In July 2020 Jasmine, an Interior Architecture and Design student, started her placement in visual merchandising for L’Oréal in London. Jasmine tells us what she’s been working on and how her confidence has grown already.
Who do you work for?
I am the Visual Merchandising intern for LDF at L’Oréal. This means I get to work on a range of fragrance brands such as Valentino, Ralph Lauren and Diesel.
L’Oréal have acquired new brands such as Mugler and Prada which I am very excited to begin working with. Most recently I have been working on the new Valentino fragrance launch. This has been super-challenging and exciting.
Tell us about your placement
Visual merchandising is a super fun and creative role. I get to help design sites, point of sale units and graphic design pieces. In visual merchandising we get to work with suppliers on a range of projects which is great exposure and experience. I also go on site visits and installs to help set up new stores or event sites to ensure the retail design is beautiful.
What have you learnt so far?
I have really developed my skills over the first 3 months of my internship. For example, my confidence when speaking with colleagues has shot up. Already I’ve started to improve my time management and organisational skills which is something I have always struggled with previously at university.
It has also really helped me develop an understanding how the business side of a creative role works. This is something I wouldn’t have learnt going straight into work from university.
I am using Adobe on a day-to-day basis which is really helping to develop my graphic design skills. This will be beneficial for my final year as it will help me to reach the top band of the mark scheme and elevate my designs on the page.
Have you met other interns?
L’Oréal has a large community of interns and apprentices which is great as we all support each other and can socialise after work. It’s great to have other people going through similar situations that you can talk to. We also have an intern committee which are hoping to arrange social and sport events in the coming months if the restrictions lift.
What training can you do?
L’Oréal also offer free courses on a learning platform which you can sign up for to help improve your skills. This is a great resource as you can choose the training you want/need, the courses which interest you and would be beneficial to your role or help with your degree.
Most recently I took a photography training session which I found interesting and helpful for both taking pictures of the sites I’m working, It’ll help when taking images for my final year projects.
Is there help if you want go back to L’Oréal after graduation?
L’Oréal also have two progression opportunities that you can apply for. The first being the grand scheme and the second being talent track which puts you in a top position for entry-level roles.
You work throughout the year with your manager to improve your competencies and skills in the role. This helps to put you in the best position professionally, as well as preparing and guiding you through the process of applying for these positions, if this is what you decide to do.
Do you recommend a placement year?
To anyone considering doing a placement, I would apply as you really have nothing to lose. My personal and professional growth so far has been huge, and I am only 3 months in. I am performing tasks that 12 weeks ago I would never have had the ability or confidence to achieve.
I also feel like with the current circumstances anything you can do to elevate your CV and life skills is so important to set you apart from the majority in such a competitive time.