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Joy Manuel

A placement programme at IBM


IBM manufactures and markets computer hardware and software, and offers infrastructure, hosting and consulting services in areas ranging from mainframe computers to nanotechnology.

Joy Manuel is currently working as an Analyst at Cisco Systems within the Communication & Collaboration IT PMO(Project Management Office). During her one-year placement whilst studying Information Systems at City University, she worked as a Business Analyst at IBM.

Working at IBM Southbank, London; Joy worked on a number of initiatives throughout the year, with the majority of her time on a project called SNAP (Strategic North-East Account Planning), working within the Project Management Office (PMO) team. Her responsibilities included preparing for and scheduling over 300+ account planning sessions for high profile account teams across Europe, as well as training sessions for the facilitators beforehand. The project was intense and had various tight deadlines to keep to and in total took around 5-6 months for completion, however the results were a success and the team was acknowledged; receiving the award for 'Business Transformation IT', which recognises teams and employees who have worked on innovative and successful IT projects within IBM. Joy also gained two individual awards throughout the year for her efforts on other various pieces of work, as well as having the opportunity to travel frequently to various cities around Europe including Zurich, Frankfurt and Munich.

Since graduating, Joy secured a job as an Analyst at Cisco Systems, where she is involved on a number of various IT projects such as IT projects such as Budget Finance Portfolio Management, Software Support & Operations, Metrics related projects as well as designing and contributing to the internal workspace.

Reflecting on her year in industry, Joy says that 'leaving University with a year's worth of practical industrial experience gave me a positive boost in increasing my chances of finding full time employment. I can honestly say that without my placement year at IBM, I would probably have had an extremely tough time finding a job after graduating.

Having work experience helped me to become more confident in my approach to employers during interviews as I was able to give first hand examples of situations faced whilst working within my role at IBM. When I left IBM, I gained invaluable skills and business acumen, as well as gaining knowledge from others with different roles, cultures and skill sets'.