The next instalment of inspirational blogs in our series entitled “Graduates of Global Distinction” comes from NBS alumna Danielle Hatley. Danielle fought off fierce competition to secure her dream job at one of the world’s leading technology consultancy practices, Accenture, with its UK HQ in London. Accenture has an annual turnover exceeding $30Bn and employs more than 370,000 staff worldwide. Its client base includes major blue chip organisations in more than 120 countries. Director of Employability, Dr Graham Manville who had the pleasure of teaching her in 2015 commented “Danielle is the kind of role model who will send a clear and unequivocal signal to our female students that they can achieve their goals if they set their minds to it”. As Danielle approaches the end of her first year at Accenture she has already worked on several overseas projects and has become qualified in some state of the art business technology software. Check out her story in her own words:
I had my job at Accenture secured before graduation which made graduating even more enjoyable, knowing that I had an incredible opportunity waiting for me. I joined Accenture in October 2015 and in my first year I have already developed professionally and socially here. The opportunities to develop you professionally at Accenture are endless and I have taken full advantage of the support and prospects on offer.
In my first month I extended my accomplishments by becoming certified in the ISEB Programme and Project Support Office Essentials (BCS, The Charted Institute for IT). My first role was working on a core system migration at TSB with the Spanish bank Banco Sabadell, followed by an Oracle transformation at The Kier Group and now I am positioned on an internal DevOps project, where I am looking to grow my knowledge further.
I also look forward to becoming certified in Workday, a growing area in the Cloud practice, later this year. There are numerous rewarding aspects to working at Accenture, aside from the opportunity to develop myself academically, gain further certifications and work with major clients. The social side of work is also important; you need to work somewhere you enjoy. I have met some great people at Accenture and made friends for life. I have had the opportunity to travel all around the UK and abroad, including Madrid and Amsterdam.
Accenture also put on great social events which I help to organise – recently we had breakfast at The Shard! Although, while at University my priority was my degree, I have always had the ambition to work in a big company. I focused first on completing my final exams and then I began the search for my ‘dream job’.
With the support of my father I wrote a list of the top 10 firms I yearned to work for, with Accenture being one of them. I found the Client and Delivery Graduate programme on their website and it ticked all the boxes for what I wanted. After applying, I completed the online tests, video interview, assessment day and the final interview. The process was very quick; within 2 days of my final interview I was offered the job, and I was overwhelmed with joy to say the least. It made all the long library days and stress worth it.
A main part of my job is dealing with clients, whether this is in a positive or a more challenging environment. Interpersonal skills and the ability to build relationships with ease is key. Modules such as Entrepreneurship, Strategic Management and Project Management all contributed to my development and I see the skills I learnt at Norwich Business School coming into practice every day at Accenture.
My role is based upon confidence; producing quality work for clients, ensuring the project is on time and simply getting things done. Building these skills at University gave me a huge advantage when coming into the world of work.
As part of my Entrepreneurship module I was able to compete in the NatWest Employability Awards, in which my team came runners up. This involved project work, team management and meeting deadlines – all of which I practice daily at work.
UEA happened to be the first university I visited when I was 17 and since then no other university has come close. The sense of belonging that I felt straight away I did not get anywhere else. I liked how UEA was a campus university – everything was in one place, like one giant family! I was attracted to NBS, the modules they had on offer and the academic team appeared enthusiastic about you as an individual. This opinion remained throughout my three years there.
My first word of advice would be to continue to build yourself outside of term times. I found my internships crucial when searching for jobs and my job offer was dependent not just on having a degree but the industry experience coupled with that. My experience was based in Technology at EE and Claranet and formed by a desire to work in a Tech/Consulting firm.
Use the resources you have around you, always ask for advice if you need it, there are plenty of people that will help your journey to a career. Work out what industry you would like to go in and apply for what you feel would suit you. Don’t just apply for a job, apply for a career. Lastly, do not get disheartened if you do not get the first job you apply for – the right one is out there, even if it takes a little longer than expected.
With many thanks to Danielle Hatley for contributing to the NBS Blog.
If you have graduated from NBS within the last five years or more we would love to hear from you.