(by Jennifer Mbunga)
One day at the end of 2013, I was on Facebook looking at different multinational companies to apply to, as I was thinking about doing an internship back in Germany. This is when I first came across Blind Applying. I started filling out the application, but never completed it. At that time I was in the U.S. doing a year abroad and was thinking about leaving after a term, but I ended up staying the whole academic year (really great decision by the way!). In November 2014 I fully filled out the application for Blind Applying. There was no dreadful cover letter – I hate them-, all I had to do was give in my contact information and upload my CV.
Months went by and I completely forgot I had applied. In January, I got an email from Alex who works at Blind Applying. I was in the TOP 40 and got invited to a phone interview. This was conducted by Jessica who works at Enterprise’s headquarters in Eschborn, Germany (near Frankfurt). I was then invited to the assessment center in Eschborn as a part of the TOP 15, which was crazy in itself when you think that there were over 10k applicants in the beginning.
Long story short, at the day-long assessment I got to meet 5 other candidates, the Human Resources (HR) Team from Frankfurt as well as Matt, the European Talent Acquisition Manager from the headquarters (HQ) in Egham, England, who I am now reporting to.
A week or so later we all got feedback and I got a call from Matt. He delivered the news to me like this: “As you may know I have a bit of bad news for you.” (He paused and my heart sank!), “You are going to have to tell your friends and family that you will be spending three months in the UK!”
Fast forward to now – My Internship in May 2015
My first day at Enterprise Rent-A-Car was a Tuesday, May 5 – internally called the Enterprise anniversary, which is a tradition celebrating every employee’s anniversaries with the firm by giving them a card and having a “cake day”.
The office space here at the corporate HQ is new and really modern. Enterprise moved in here in March 2014, so the atmosphere is warm and welcoming at least for someone like me who likes interior design. Working at HQ can get quite hectic as everybody here is really busy. Luckily, Matt introduced me to my coworkers and showed me around. What I liked is that I can bring my own devices so I can use my iPad and apps at work. I was also given a quick tour of the city and Matt took me out to one of my favorite restaurants for lunch, which was very kind.
What I do during my internship
On my second day, I attended a Media Day taking place at our media agency Bernard HODES. As my internship revolves around HR Brand Development for Enterprise’s “new” markets in Germany, France and Spain a lot of my tasks have to do with employer branding – which is similar to consumer branding but aims at getting people to want to work for you as opposed to buying your products.
On Media Day, different companies came to pitch their ideas on how they would be able to help Enterprise reach its recruiting goals. The office’s balcony had the best view on landmarks like St. Paul’s Cathedral, the London Eye and the Shard. Another bonus was the different gifts and goodies the companies brought, like macaroons, chocolate and stationery stuff. Lunch was also on the house.
The following day, we attended a panel discussion about “The Evolution of Candidate Attraction”. In case you are wondering, breakfast was served there too and it was pretty good (big foodie here ;) ).
After heading to the media agency once again, I got an idea of what type of work they do for Enterprise and how companies develop Employer Branding strategies. I am going to be spending a week with them in June and I’m looking forward to that.
It’s not all work though
Even if it was my first week, a lot of emails were waiting for me already. One of them was for the company party at Thorpe Park – an amusement park- next month. I am really excited to go!
So far I truly enjoy the prospects of moving around a lot and learning different aspects of HR brand development. Working in such a big company can be quite intimidating. I tend to be shy when I am placed in a new setting so I am still trying to find my place and look forward to connecting with my coworkers even more as time goes by. Come back to read more about my adventures in the beginning of June.