Nicole’s Internship Reflection (Gifting.sg and Swapie.co)

During the internship for the past 2 and a half months I have been working at Swapie.co and Gifting.sg , I have had the privilege of working in a fun and productive environment. I was able to try my hand at various tasks from different departments and gained an experience that I believe is rare for interns today. 

Human Resource Management

At the beginning of my internship, I was entrusted with the task to list job openings on various hiring platforms and to shortlist potential candidates for the position of a Developer and a Marketing Intern. As an intern who joined the company for less than a week, I was surprised that I was asked to be involved with the hiring process of another intern. During that week, I read a total of over 30 different resumes from people from all walks of life ranging from students to those who are going through a mid-career switch. 

After I shortlisted 5 applicants, I sent out an email for them to schedule an interview and that was the beginning of the interview rounds. My boss invited me to sit in for the interviews and I learned the traits that a hirer looks out for first hand. This was a unique experience as I have never experienced being on the hiring committee for a corporate setting. 

Social Media and Content Marketing 

My initial job scope was to manage Swapie and Gifting’s social media platforms and write a blog article for each company per week. After my company hired another intern, Jun Wei, to help with marketing, my workload decreased to writing an article per week and managing both platforms.

In an attempt to improve our copywriting skills and the quality of the blogs, we read each other’s articles and leave comprehensive comments and suggestions. After our first round of edits, our boss, Kang Liang, would vett through once more before the blog gets posted. Although I am used to writing academic papers, I was a complete newbie when it came to writing blogs. After reading comments from both Kang Liang and Jun Wei, I spotted common slip ups I made in my writing and have improved since then. 

As part of marketing efforts, our company decided to redo the ads campaigns. I was tasked to design a new ad campaign and launch it. This was my first time launching an ad campaign and I had to familiarise myself with the dashboard of the ad manager for facebook. This was an interesting internship experience as I learnt many aspects of marketing at one go ranging from cost-per-click, analysing demographics, drafting good call-to-actions and search-engine-optimisation. After analysing the data of my ad campaign, I churned out a marketing report and presented the contents and analysis to my team. 

Partnerships and Outreach

At the start of my internship during the first check-in, I mentioned that one of my learning goals was to run campaigns. My proposal for the campaign was accepted and I started to outreach. The current August campaign involves onboarding merchants to our page to provide their product or services at a discounted rate to charities while Gifting reaches out to everyday donors to sponsor the cost of the items. After reaching out to many merchants, we are in the proposal stage with 10 SMEs offering a variety of services and products.

During this campaign, I was grateful to be taught how to pitch my idea to merchants and conduct myself confidently. I had never done any business pitches prior and have definitely gained insights into the dos and don’ts of outreach and establishing partnerships. I have also learnt to accept rejection and move on with my plan instead of harbouring too much of my time on a merchant who does not wish to collaborate. This experience with partnership has taught me the importance of pitching quickly and catching my audience’s attention as well as providing just enough details in the email where they will reach out if they are interested. 

To consolidate my learning, I wrote all the tips I have learnt in a blog article titled 5 Skills for Investor Pitches.

Working from home for the internship

This whole internship was conducted remotely due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the restrictions. Thus, I had to work independently and liaise with my colleagues using online tools such as Slack and Trello to track our task progress. This allowed me the freedom and flexibility to work at spaces I felt comfortable with and work productively at home. The remote working experience did not diminish the quality of work and allowed me to work comfortably and efficiently.

I have only met the team once during a quick sprint and went out for dinner where I got to know the rest of the team better. After our conversations, I quickly grew closer to my team as I realised we had more similarities in interests than expected. It is a blessing to have met colleagues who get along well in the workplace and outside of work.

Conclusion 

With that, I would like to thank the team for offering me the support to explore so many different areas of work and my bosses for trusting me to try out any proposals I have in mind without limitations. This internship environment allowed me to grow and explore all aspects within reach and the insights I gained will definitely stick with me for a long time to come.

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