It's been over a year since André from Portugal, an Accounting and public management graduate, first came to Slovakia and stayed since then. He started his journey as a P2P trainee in a multinational logistics company and since the company was very happy with his work, he got a full-time job offer with a start right after his traineeship was completed. Below you can read a brief interview with André about his life and Erasmus+ traineeship experience in Slovakia.
1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Hello! My name is André and I come from Coimbra, Portugal. I am 23 years old and I graduated in accounting and public management. Since I wanted to improve my curriculum before applying for a job, I decided to apply for an Erasmus internship and get some working experience abroad.
2. What was the nature of your position and main responsibilities?
In the beginning, while I was learning the company processes and all the tasks that I would eventually work on, I was just entering invoices into the accounting system and doing other manual work. After some weeks, I was already responsible for verification of invoices and creation of invoices towards supplier and assuring payment from clients. In short my position is AP-AR analyst (responsible for managing the accounts payable and accounts receivable for GSCO - Europe, Middle East and Africa) on a multinational logistics company.
3. Which work tasks were the most challenging for you and what do you feel you improved the most at?
Since my company's process was recently implemented, it had some flaws. Having to find out solutions to solve every problem that we encountered was probably the most challenging part of the work. Since we have a wide variety of countries and different suppliers under our scope we have to keep a regular communication with them, so, I feel like I improved both my oral and writing communication in English. Working for a multinational company also allowed me to learn a lot.
4. How has your experience with Placement Slovakia enhanced your career prospects?
The process of choosing an internship and doing all the required interviews was swift. After getting accepted, Placement Slovakia picked me up at the airport and showed me how to get to my work. They also explained beforehand the most important things I had to know about Slovakia and its culture. During my internship, Placement Slovakia always checked on me and made sure everything was going smoothly. In my country a working experience abroad is really valuable and I feel like it increases my chances of getting hired in the future.
5. How was life in Slovakia, what did you enjoy the most here?
I arrived in December so I got all the Slovakian winter. For me it was a good experience because I was able to live in different weather conditions and experience a new culture. I really enjoyed the snow and all the winter sports associated with it. The city is very calm and safe and it is really central in Europe which allowed us to travel to other countries very easily. In the summer there are lots of cultural, gastronomic and sports events in the city. There is also a wide variety of lakes to visit on which we could relax, sunbath and enjoy a good beer.
6. What's next for you after finishing your internship here?
Around two months before my internship ended I got an offer to stay in the company on a full time job and I accepted. Right now I am living in Slovakia.
7. Would you recommend our programme and Slovakia to your friends and if so, why?
Yes, I would recommend to everyone who wants to get working experience, get to know a new country, culture and practice a second language (most likely English). It is really a great experience and you would not regret it for sure. There is a wide variety of internships that you can apply on Placement Slovakia website and you can be assured that you won't be alone in Slovakia.