work experience

The Total Media work experience programme is just one of the many ways we work with young people in our local community. Explore the details of our work experience program and understand its significance by reading the below.

What is the Total Media work experience scheme?

At Total Media, we recognise that most students are expected to rely on pre-established connections in order for them to gain awareness and access to work experience opportunities. That’s why at Total Media we offer our work experience programme to local candidates who might not have connections that grant them access to these opportunities.

We partnered with 2-3 Degrees, a member of the Young Westminster Foundation, to select these candidates through their ‘Mastering My Future’ programme, which aims to equip young people within the borough with imperative personal development skills. Once identified, these students embarked on a two-week paid work scheme where they gained firsthand insights into the operations of a media agency.

How does Total Media’s work experience programme work?

Open day – To identify students for our work experience scheme we hosted an open day where enthusiastic young individuals had the chance to visit our office and learn about all the teams in the agency, ranging from finance to activation. This not only gave them a preview of what to expect during their time with us but gave us the opportunity to discover what they were most interested in learning, so we could tailor their programmes accordingly.

Students apply to the programme – Following the open day, the students were sent an application form in which they can pick the departments they were most interested in working in to ensure their time with us is most valuable. Once the candidates were selected, we liaised with internal teams to create customised schedules based on their selections so that each student had their own unique rotations.

Candidates each spend three days, in three teams – Over the course of two weeks the students have three-day placements in each of their chosen three departments. This gives them enough time to engage with each team, whilst seeing as much of the wider agency as they can. They completed tasks ranging from research, to creating presentations, using different tools and platforms, and sending all staff comms.

Introductory sessions with external partners – Alongside their day to day tasks, the students were provided with the opportunity to learn about the wider media landscape through a number of external presentations that we organised. This included training sessions from Yahoo, Channel 4, Posterscope and RadioWorks. These experiences can be valuable additions to their CVs and university applications.

Individual coaching sessions – The students also had the opportunity to have a one-on-one conversation with an experienced staff member. This allowed them to discuss any concerns, as well as seek guidance regarding future steps, careers, interviews, university, and more.

Final presentation about their time here – On the last day of the programme, the students were set a task to reflect on the past two weeks and think about the things they had learnt, what they enjoyed and what they can take away with them. Their feedback and presentations were really heartwarming and insightful, and outlined the significance of how these programs positively impact young people’s growth and development.

Why are work experience programmes important?

Work experience programmes are beneficial for both participants and employers. For the participants, they get to explore different career paths within an industry, helping them make informed decisions about their future career goals. They can learn from real-world scenarios and gain hands-on experience that classroom education cannot provide. It allows them to push themselves out of their comfort zones, resulting in increased confidence and growth, and of course, creates chances for recommendations and future job opportunities.

But don’t just take our word for it! Some of the amazing feedback we got from students included:

“Work experience at Total Media has allowed me to gain first-hand experience in a professional office environment.”

“I enjoyed being able to experience the different types of tech used in advertising such as the eye tracking for Behave and seeing our emotional responses.”

For employers, the benefits of offering work experience includes identifying potential future employees and therefore, reduce onboarding time as the individual will already be familiar with how things operate.

It also enables us to foster a culture of learning and development within the agency, while investing in our local community’s development and future workforce. Offering work experience aligns perfectly with our values as an accredited B Corp because ESG is at the forefront of everything we do, so to be able to support and actively be involved with our local community is very rewarding!

Work experience is just one way we work with young people in our community

We are involved in several other programmes which supports our local community such as:

WYK – This is a programme for young people looking to kickstart their learning in the digital marketing industry. We have recruited through this programme and hosted open days for them. It gives those an opportunity who may not have obtained experience through the normal channels. It not only opens the industry up to everyone, but diversifies our talent pool, which is incredibly beneficial as it leads to diversification of ideas and ways of working.

Advertising Unlocked – This programme exposes secondary school age children to the digital marketing industry through an open day via the IPA. It opens young people’s eyes to an industry they may not have been aware of, and we encourage those old enough to apply to Total Media to keep in touch.

Unfold Mentoring – Some of our employees have become an Unfold mentor. This requires each mentor to go through bespoke and comprehensive training to ensure they are ready for at least 6 months’ worth of one-on-one mentoring where they will meet with their mentee on a weekly basis. The aim of the mentoring programme is to support the development of a growth mindset and to boost confidence and wellbeing.

For more information on all our employment opportunities contact us today, or view our current vacancies here.

Alix Troy - Office Manager

Author: Alix Troy - Office Manager

Alongside her role, Alix leads our ESG strategy and manages our B Corp, Green and Social Teams. Alix enjoys going on sunny holidays, walking her dog Teddy and isn't shy to a little self pamper.