My Work Experience at OCM, by Saim Saeed

I’m in year 11 in Wellingborough School. I came to OCM Wealth Management after doing my GCSEs (which I hope went well) for 3 days as part of my school’s work experience programme. I was really happy with where I managed to get my placement as not only was it close to where I live, but it was precisely the sort of place I wanted to go to, as I am thinking about a career in finance. So on the 7th of July I started my first day of work experience.

What I expected?

My previous knowledge of the world of finance and stocks had been limited to mainly movies and TV shows which certainly dramatised it a lot. On the other hand I thought my placement would have been staring at spreadsheets the whole day and looking at graphs which made no sense at all. Luckily, OCM turned out to be better than both of my expectations.

What I did?

The first day at OCM Wealth Management consisted of a tour of the office by Maggie Stather-Lodge and learning the basic skills needed for work. This was learning some key words such as equity, shares, funds etc. After that I watched a video on the current climate of the markets to get a background of the whole situation in which the people here work. Now armed with the basic ideas of what the economy looked like, a meeting between Pritpal Lotay (OCM’s Multi-Asset Strategist) and a representative from an investment management group gave a fascinating insight into how OCM works with other companies.

The second day was when the real work began; first a large spreadsheet in which I was given the challenging task of making sense of the month’s debits and credits, under the watchful (and helpful) eye of OCM’s Finance Manager David Critchlow. Frances Noons then gave an interesting talk of what her job as a Client Services Manager and Financial Planner involved (the importance of confidentiality and a good relationship with clients) and Tom Pallant then gave some interesting tasks of making sense of what protection insurance schemes offered. The day finished with at first mindboggling work on converting Sedol codes to Isin codes delegated by the dynamic Grainne McGettigan.

On my final day I made several phone calls to companies trying to get information regarding policy information, something I had never done before so my nerves were a bit on edge. Thankfully under the guidance of Andrea Wood this task was made much easier. Finally Tom gave me an excellent test which gave me an idea of my traits and which jobs they would fit into, followed by some advice on University. Finally the day ended with a goodbye to the staff who selflessly gave up their own free time just to accommodate me into their very busy schedule.

I’d like to say thank you to Jason Stather-Lodge for agreeing to have me here and to everyone who helped and guided me during the work experience and wish everyone good luck in the future.