Year in industry – Ben’s story
My 13-Month Supply Chain Placement at Boots UK started back in July with a 1-month store placement at a local Boots retailer in Derby.
During my time in store I was able to gain extensive knowledge of how Boots operates as a retail business, learning more about customer relations, how the operation itself functions and how different job roles in the support office play a huge part in the day-to-day running of a Boots store. For me personally, I thoroughly enjoyed working in a Boots store, I built great relationships with all my store colleagues and everyone was extremely focused and clued up on why I was there and how important my month in store was to my year in industry development.
After my store placement finished back in September, I have since spent my time working in the Support Office for PDC (Pharmacy Delivery & Collection service). PDC has been a great department for me personally as it enables me to work on multiple different projects and BAU tasks that keep me very busy, occupied and engaged, whilst having the chance to work on something new every day. My role in PDC is different to what you would expect when applying for a traditional supply chain placement, and this suited me perfectly. I design and create the monthly communications pack for PDC, this includes a pack for managers and a pack for drivers. The content includes any details of recent operational changes and any relevant news articles from across PDC and Boots for that month. This is then distributed to all involved in PDC, from managers to the 1,746 drivers who deliver pharmaceuticals to patients across the country. My other tasks and responsibilities include working closely with the fleet of vehicles that we use every day to deliver pharmaceuticals.
A key point in all of this is that I am given a wide array of key tasks and responsibilities that are meaningful and very much important to the department as a whole. I think it’s very important that placement students are aware that they are not just ‘placed’ into a meaningless role within Boots that has zero impact on the overall business – this couldn’t be further from the truth, whatever role you are in comes with a great deal of responsibility and a guarantee that your work will have an impact to the company.
In just the short period of time I have been at Boots I have learnt a great deal about my role itself, but also business as a whole. Working in a huge multi-national corporate environment has enabled me to improve on my professionalism and has given me a chance to get a clear insight into how the world of business works first hand. For me, that insight is invaluable, whilst University and Sixth form can teach you the theory behind business, the chance to network with top level people from across the business and learn first-hand how an organisation such as Boots operates will help massively next year at University and for the rest of my career.
Amongst other things, the support and development programme that is offered at Boots is a tremendous help in your own personal development. With regular one to ones with line managers, mentors and members of the talent programme, you are provided with all the feedback you need to get the most out of your time at Boots.
It is important to realise that Boots appreciate that each individual who applies to a placement scheme is entirely different to the next and what each individual wants to gain from their year will be completely different. In just three months I am very pleased with what I have already achieved from my time at Boots. I’m looking forward to pushing myself further and getting involved in more projects and exploring the different functions of the business. I would definitely recommend working for Boots and supply chain to anybody who is keen to learn more about business and gain first-hand experience with a company who cares about your progress and development.
Would you like to become part of our story? Have a look at our Year in Industry opportunities here – www.boots.jobs/graduates-and-early-careers/year-in-industry/