Programme Support Officer, Operational Excellence
I have had the pleasure of experiencing both the Finance and Management training schemes, having joined the former in late 2014 and transferring across to the latter in mid-2016. I have been lucky enough to be able to experience the full depth of the College’s machinations, from working with students and academics on costing their research proposals in the Department of Mechanical Engineering through to researching and creating exhibitions for the public in Communications and Public Affairs. The range of opportunities available on the scheme makes it a fantastic opportunity to experiment and develop your knowledge of the myriad of functions required for a world-class university to run – particularly useful if you’re still not really sure what you want to do in life yet!
I now work in the College’s Operational Excellence team, which aims to help makes people’s lives easier by producing simpler, more effective services for staff and students. My role involves trying to ensure we make the best use of Imperial’s available space, whether it be for meetings, teaching or exams.
It is an exciting role that involves a lot of research and evidence building in order to help demythologise rumours and legends about College spaces. This makes it immensely satisfying – it is all geared towards ensuring staff and students have an improved experience of the College, and it's nice to be able to see the work you do making a noticeable difference in how the College is perceived.
The role is diverse in that it rolls the best parts of my previous placements into one – there’s the data collection and analysis from Finance, the need to communicate visually and engagingly from time spent developing international-themed infographics in Communications, and the influencing of and engagement with the College community from Operational Excellence. The scheme has been immensely supportive in helping me gain confidence and build a repertoire of skills to be able to move into a role, as well as adapting to my personal ambitions to help me develop in the direction I wished to go.
I would absolutely encourage anyone who wants to see behind the curtain of a large public institution to apply to the Graduate Management Training Scheme. You will get stuck in to an assortment of stimulating projects, gain exposure to an extensive range of roles and responsibilities, and make some wonderful friends along the way.