My first 6 weeks in Information Systems...

Johnnie tells us about his IS graduate scheme experiences

Hi, I’m Johnnie and I’m on the Information Systems stream working in the Finance and Debt department of Core Systems. I’m currently doing an integrated Masters in Physics at Manchester University and have just finished my 3rd year. IS may not be the first thing to spring to mind when you hear “physics” but I’ve found the skills I’ve learnt and developed during my degree have served me well in my placement so far.

To say that the past six weeks have flown by would be an understatement. To use the old cliché, it seems like only yesterday I was a fresh-faced intern walking up towards the Orbis building, knees knocking and tie getting tighter the closer I got to the door. My nerves were misplaced, of course, and – thankfully – the tie was off within minutes of being introduced to my line manager. It seems fitting that the dress code would be smart-casual for such a relaxed and friendly office. For the past few weeks I’ve been made to feel welcome by everyone I’ve met, no matter how many times I’ve had to interrupt them to ask what the latest acronym stood for!

I’ve been working on two projects during my time here, both pretty different in scope. The first is to create library and folder structures for the Finance and Debt TeamSite and to make it more user-friendly. A TeamSite is essentially an online repository for documents and information relevant to the projects and day-to-day operations of the team. My second project is a collaborative effort with a fellow intern – Joe Bass – where we’re mapping out the Incident Management process for all support levels, including user-facing support staff, contractors and the development teams in Core Systems. We’re also responsible for delivering this formalised process to the various levels in a series of Workshops and Brown Bag Lunches.

In both cases, the scope has been wide enough for me to pursue each project as I’ve wanted to, although that’s not to say I’ve been pushed out into the cold with no guidance at all! My line managers have been more than ready and willing to provide help and insight whenever I’ve asked. With their support, along with my team’s and fellow interns, I’ve gradually built on my understanding of the projects and am well on my way to (hopefully!) delivering on my objectives to the highest standard I can.