Over the last 3 and half months, we have had the pleasure of hosting our newest intern, Francis, currently a third-year Economics student studying at the University of Victoria in Canada. His key duties consisted of analyzing and standardizing data, various marketing projects, as well as recruitment support. Francis’s level of responsibility and involvement in the recruitment process gradually increased over the course of his internship. In this blog post, we have outlined his experience by taking a closer look at his tasks month-by-month, and Francis discusses what he learned throughout his internship experience.
September – Settling In
Throughout September, Francis was mainly involved in analyzing and standardizing data on our database while also assisting our marketing team with various projects. Francis performed industry research for the creation of new visual marketing material which was then implemented on multiple social networking platforms.
“Early on in my internship, the most challenging part was not the work itself, but instead just getting accustomed to expectations and standards at Apex, as well as becoming familiar with Tokyo.”
“Good communication and organization skills are musts for this job. The office is a fast-paced, upbeat environment and since I was working on various tasks with several different consultants, I quickly learned the importance of effective internal communication and establishing good organizational habits for the course of my internship.”
October – Learning the recruitment process
October was Francis’s first experience being involved in the recruitment process. Francis assisted both the Legal and Pharmaceutical teams with their executive searches and also took part in training with our new associates. This enabled Francis to accelerate his learning and knowledge in the recruitment process.
“Being treated as another associate in training, I was constantly challenged whether it was practicing face-to-face sales pitches, or being asked to research our clients then present to my colleagues.”
“Since this has been my first experience in a sales-related job, training taught me how to better engage an audience by providing them with the necessary information in my sales pitches.”
November – Taking on more responsibility
In November, Francis’s main responsibility was to assist our Pharmaceutical consultants with their executive searches. This meant Francis performed deep searches of various roles on our database, as well as informing job seekers about our job openings. He also assisted our Marketing team in designing new promotional materials.
“November was challenging because I was involved with multiple searches that seemed promising but were quite difficult to fill. At that point, having the right attitude to stay positive and believing your work will pay off was tough, but it’s absolutely necessary.”
“Really digging down to understand our candidates is key before proceeding to help them find a new opportunity. Through gaining more confidence in speaking on the phone, I felt I was able to better understand the job seekers’ motives, goals, and current situation – making it clear which positions they are well suited for.”
December – Transition phase
With December being Francis’s final 2 weeks at Apex, he focused on a wider variety of projects including; new Pharmaceutical and Healthcare searches, assisting with marketing as well as helping to organize our year end party.
"Honestly, the most challenging part of December will be saying goodbye to all of my awesome colleagues who I have worked with and who have supported me since September."
Overall learning outcomes:
"There are many skills I have developed and lessons I’ve learned at Apex that I will take with me for the rest of my life. Above all, being directly involved with some senior-level executive searches and working with our Managing Director has proven to be a big learning experience for me and has helped me understand how to manage communication with multiple stakeholders."
Francis will be heading back to Canada to finish his degree at the University of Victoria. His contributions have been a great help to our teams and he will surely be missed. We wish him all the best in finishing his degree!