What attracted you to the Aon Graduate Programme?
Insurance was a career I hadn’t thought about before and came across it whilst researching applications during my Masters programme at Bath University. The more I read about the industry, the more interested I became. It provided the chance to work with clients from all over the world, whether SMEs or large corporates and I really felt it would suit my personal skill set. Following a lot of research, I became particularly interested in the reinsurance segment of the industry. Aon is a multi-faceted market leader and has a reputable Insurance graduate scheme. As such, when I was lucky enough to be offered a position within Aon Benfield on the graduate programme, it was something I couldn’t turn down.
What have you learned in your role so far?
Where to start? My skill set has improved hugely since life at Aon began. This ranges from technical understanding, both proficiency and efficiency, contact base within the market and trying to be as strong at my role as possible. I have also nearly completed the ACII qualification with one exam left so that will be really useful to get under the belt. The graduate programme was also a great environment to improve my wider skill base, taking part in activities such as presentation skill training and team building exercises, not to mention exposure to some really exciting people within Aon and the wider market place.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I am an early starter and get in to the office just after 7am. I will tend to spend around an hour sorting through emails that have come in overnight before addressing any high priority issues. Given the nature of the business, there are times of the year during renewals season where we are very busy. Therefore, this will involve running analysis, liaising with clients and discussing strategy internally.
Towards late morning I will normally head out of the office and in to Lloyd’s to see re-insurers which will last until around 1pm. Dependent on how busy I am, I may try and pop to the gym but otherwise, I will do a working lunch at my desk. The afternoon again will be mixed with meetings and maintenance of accounts along with working on up coming renewals or potentially any new tenders we are participating within. My day usually finishes around 6:30pm. I have just joined the cycle to work scheme through Aon so have begun cycling to and from work which is an enjoyable way to start and end the working day.
What have you enjoyed most about your graduate programme?
There are many factors but I would say overall, the people I have met and the amount I have learned. Every day feels like a school day and I have not stopped absorbing information since I began but I hope this continues as it is a great way to stay motivated. Aon has made me feel exceptionally welcome and I have felt part of the team from day one, which can only be a positive for any newbie commencing life here.
What’s next for you?
I have now been with Aon almost two years and over the next two, I am very much focused on increasing my knowledge base and skill set further. I would love to be able to turn around five years into life here and feel as though I had really made a head start into my career and was well on the way to a great journey.
What advice would you give to someone considering applying for a graduate or internship programme?
Do it! Make sure you try to meet and experience as much of a company as you possibly can early in your career.