Hi, my name is Harry and I am a final year Management with Innovation student at the University of Bristol. This course is a four-year integrated master’s degree, combining specialist core disciplines such as Management, Economics, Physics and many others, with Innovation, to tackle the growing needs of the 21st Century.
Over the summer, I had the wonderful opportunity to join INVISTA, a global manufacturer of fibers, polymers and chemical intermediates, and a subsidiary of Koch Industries. I worked as a Business Operations Intern, joining the wider EU Supply Chain team.
I engaged with the Careers Service at the University of Bristol several times in my third year, when I was looking at, and applying for internships. The service provided me with resources to help my application stand out and signposted internships, including the INVISTA summer programme that I recently completed.
During this internship, I worked in the relatively new Centre of Excellence (COE) team. This formed part of the wider Enablement team, where the focus is very much on innovation. I found the opportunity to be a part of this team exciting, as it allowed me to use the theory I had learned in my course and apply it in the real world to improve efficiency within selected Supply Chain processes.
From a more tangible perspective, I got the chance to experiment and use tools new to me, such as ChatGPT to automate a process, and worked with developers to enhance a current system of capturing customer information. Through the culture of Principled-Based Management™, I also had the opportunity to ‘fail’, and take it as a learning opportunity for when things don’t go to plan – as they so often do. Therefore, this role provided an opportunity for both personal and professional growth.
Following the conclusion of my internship, INVISTA kindly offered me a full-time position as a Business Operations Specialist beginning in 2024, following my graduation. I will be joining the Customer Experience team, where I will be the focal point for my customers to ensure they get the very best service we can provide. I am really looking forward to beginning my career at INVISTA and furthering my knowledge in supply chains and the manufacturing industry.
Whilst studying, I found taking part in activities such as representing the University in tennis and being part of the innovation society, (firstly as Kit Secretary before moving on to Equality Director) will help me develop skills for working life, through teamwork, leadership, and people-skills.
I think one of the key skills to work in this industry would be the drive to continually keep learning. However, there are some skills which would be more obvious to increase your chances of getting into this sector, like teamwork, customer service skills, and experience using software such as Salesforce, SAP, and PowerBi.
I would also encourage you to want to keep learning more about whatever it is you are doing. For example, before my internship, I had very little knowledge of supply chains, business operations or the manufacturing industry, before my internship, but I was given a chance to learn because I showed the drive and commitment to constantly and quickly learn or adapt.
Starting an internship soon?