This post was written by Oliver, currently on placement at Coca-Cola Enterprises
Although it is early days, I think it is fair to say on 8th July 2019, my life transformed as a new chapter in the life of a BSc Accounting and Finance student began.
This was the day that I took on the role of a procurement intern at Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP) for my year in industry, located in Uxbridge. First things first, would this blog really be a Coca-Cola blog without a Coca-Cola related pun? Or maybe I’m just not Spritely enough to come up with one. Sorry, I couldn’t resist! On a serious note to placement students who will be submitting applications this upcoming year, the process will be tough. You may be unsuccessful with some applications, however, do not let that be a reason to give up. This year has potential to be the best year of your life and I’m going to tell you why.
A bit about my job role at CCEP so far: my main focus during this placement will be to support some of the procurement focused pre-work alongside SAP Ariba to implement a new system to improve the efficiency of the supply chain process and to reduce the costs incurred by the procurement department across all European partners. This includes contract review and conversion, buying channel analysis, commodity code to GL Mapping and supporting the testing and development of training. Not sure what that means? I wasn’t either before I started, but with the support of my colleagues here, I’m learning quickly. I will initially work closely with the internal project team, IBM, and Ariba to develop my understanding of the capabilities of the tools we are deploying.
The project team I am a part of is relatively small and involves colleagues from across their various European partners. Much to my surprise, particularly with the importance of technology to a multi-national corporation like CCEP, there is a vast amount of travel involved to frequently meet with the “procurement champions” representing their nation as part of the deployment of this system. This role is allowing me to explore different regions and alternative cultures from a professional, as well as personal perspective. In my first three weeks of work, I have already ventured to Brussels, Belgium and Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Both provided me with incredible experiences and I look forward to exploring other offices in various locations such as Sofia, Frankfurt and Prague in the next few months. The luxury travel, executive hotel rooms and unlimited Coca-Cola owned drinks is an alien concept for me, but I can confidently say that it is a pleasant change from having to wear seven layers in my university bedroom to keep utility bills at a minimum!
I hope whoever finds the time to read this has enjoyed the insight into my Coca-Cola experience thus far. To conclude my debut blog: sipping on a complimentary Peroni on my bedroom balcony in Brussels, and watching the sunset whilst cycling the lowlands of Rotterdam has helped me realise that corporate life may be for me.