Raji profile pic Business areas

6 months down the line: Raji Khaira, Marketing IP

Hi my name is Raji and I am currently an undergraduate placement candidate, in marketing at the wonderful world we call Unilever. I study Business and International relations at Aston University. I have worked in retail as a part time job for many years mostly at phone shops, so I enjoy a good sale and definitely love the evolving world of technology. Read more “6 months down the line: Raji Khaira, Marketing IP”

Maria profile pic Finance

Finance, it’s not just sitting in an office all…

Hi- my name’s Maria and I’m three months into my Industrial Placement in the Finance Function. I work in Brand Development for Homecare, which is a really exciting global role that gives me a first look at some of the newest innovations coming out of Unilever. I’ve already been given lots of responsibility after just a short while- including leading a Strategic Plan for the Living Hygiene brand in Household Care, updating the quarterly results scorecard for the Homecare VP and creating a cost model to identify potential for margin improvement.

It was pretty daunting coming in for my first day working in central London. However, I was soon put at ease since everyone in my team was so welcoming; my manager even took me for lunch on the rooftop terrace on the first day! Day to day it’s not just creating and updating spread sheets- I’m also having conversations with people all over the world about some of the key issues affecting the Homecare category. I’m constantly liaising with new people, learning about different aspects of management accounting and problem solving, which definitely keeps me on my toes.

But it’s not been all about finance- I’ve also done had some additional voluntary work towards Unilever’s Sustainable Living Plan. In September, through Unilever I got the opportunity to spend a day with a fantastic charity called Fareshare, who distribute surplus food from supermarkets to places that really need it- including homeless shelters, rehab and community centres. We spent the day delivering food all over London and meeting the people who benefit from their work. You can see us below (I’m second from the left) enjoying a cuppa before we set off on a hard day’s work!

Maria Finance

I also contributed to Dove’s Self Esteem Project by delivering a body confidence workshop to a group of Year 8 students. It was a pretty nerve wracking experience- and a long way from the days at the office that I’ve been used to! But it was incredibly rewarding to see how well the kids responded, and we even got some freebies at the end of the day.

I’ll soon be rotating to a new role, so I look forward to seeing what the next few months will bring!

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My UIIP Experience: Cinzia Corroppoli, Marketing IP

Hello,

I am Cinzia and I am a Brand Development Intern in the Unilever Marketing & Innovation Hub in Rotterdam, Weena. I am Italian and I graduated this year in International Management at Bocconi University. I joined Unilever in March after another internship in Amsterdam and, after almost a year in the Netherlands, I can definitely say this a great country to live in!

I always wanted to join a global firm where it is possible to touch the lives of millions of consumers through amazing products and brands while working in an international office environment. At the same time, I was looking for an organization committed to sustainability. This is why Unilever has always been a dream for me and I was thrilled when I knew I was going to take part to the Unilever International Internship Program in the European HQ!

I currently work in the Baking, Cooking and Spreads company on several expert baking margarine brands. Margarine is one of the oldest Unilever categories and it is fascinating to work on brands with such a strong heritage. During my internship, I worked on several digital marketing projects as a digital campaign to support the launch of our new product in the UK market and the launch of a new website for the brand. Every day I deal with agencies, programmers and local teams and no two days are the same.

You might still be wondering if Unilever is the right company for your internship. Is FMCG the best industry for me? What my roles and responsibilities would exactly be as intern? How does the office atmosphere look like? Based on my experience, I can say that if you wish to work in a challenging, fast-paced, international environment, the UIIP will exceed your expectations. As an intern you will take part in big projects and the support of your manager and your colleagues will help you improve your Marketing skills while contributing to your personal development. On top of everything, you will have the chance to meet amazing interns coming from all over Europe that will immediately become your family (the so-called ‘Unilever family’ J).

But let me tell you more about our adventures as interns in the next post.

Stay tuned!

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My UIIP Experience: Kiki Huangm, Marketing SP

Hi everyone, my name is Kiki and I am currently on the Unilever International Internship programme based in Rotterdam. I am a Marketing intern working on Axe.

“Advertising and marketing products for men is not necessarily a girl’s dream.”

This is exactly what I thought when I moved to Unilever from another internship in the cosmetics industry. But this brand is definitely one of the coolest brands in male FMCG and is, in my opinion, the holy grail of Unilever.

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My internship started in mid-March 2015 and I had to relocate from Germany to the Netherlands. This was however not my first time in Rotterdam because I went to University here back in 2011. Growing up in a small German town as one of the only two Chinese kids in school (the other kid was my brother), I was always left with a feeling of curiosity for the undiscovered and foreign. Moving to a city abroad turned out to be a great decision and solution to this problem!

And then the day came. With the end of three great years studying business in an international environment, a choice had to be made. Despite the feeling of being so much older, wiser and accomplished than before, I was still not ready to define my future path yet. So, I ended up taking one year to get some real work experience.

Long story short: I set foot in the Rotterdam offices on March 18 for a 6-month adventure in brand development. As the name reveals, you are involved in developing how a brand sounds, looks and feels. All concepts and ideas behind a brand must be clearly defined and expressed. The other part of this department is concerned with communicating and aligning with the local markets and to provide them with the right tools to land the products in the best manner.

After my first week I was assigned my first project: Planning a 2-day launch event. I had to organize this workshop for 60 people coming from the European headquarters and all of our European markets. This really big challenge showed me right away how much responsibility was assigned to me after just one week. As an intern you really feel like a full team member and are accounted for your projects. It was a real emotional and physical rollercoaster during the planning period with a peak at the actual orchestration of the event. Think of building retail spaces and point-of-sale materials, ordering mock-ups for products, setting up virtual reality, getting creative for the goodie bags and in the decoration of the locations. In these two months of planning, it was a real challenge to be aware of all the things happening around me and to pull the right strings. Finally, the event took place and turned out to be very successful. This was my first milestone of this internship.

After these intense months, my main responsibility became artworks – not necessarily the most fun part of working in Brand Development. Nevertheless, it is a job that needs to be done and is a significant part of the bigger picture. This is the part where I actually learned the most about the FMCG industry but also ways of working within Unilever. It is quite insightful in terms of how the company operates and how decisions are made. You will not believe how much of a deal these artworks are!

But let me tell you more about the whole UIIP experience in my next post. Stay tuned!

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persil dig Business areas

My UIIP Experience: Olga Szafonov, Marketing SP

Hello Everyone,

I am Olga Szafonov from Budapest, Hungary. I am currently working as a Brand Developement Intern in the Laundry Team at the Europe HQ of Unilever. I studied International Business Administration at Corvinus University Budapest and I have graduated from Rotterdam School of Management as a Master in Strategic Management in 2015.

I originally moved to the Netherlands to study at Erasmus University Rotterdam but I planned to do an internship in the summer from the very beginning. I believe that an internship gives you valuable learning experience and boosts your CV at the same time. My Masters was a 12-month-long program starting at September 2014 and finishing in July 2015. As I really wanted to find an internship, I was actively looking for one from February-March. Fortunately, Unilever is recruiting interns all throughout the year for its 6-month internship program. I joined in the March recruitment round. In the first part of my internship I still had some classes and projects at university but I could manage both of them thanks to the flexible environment.

When I was searching for an internship, I was looking for a multinational company which is well-known all around the world. As my main interest is in Marketing, I searched for internships in this field. The Europe HQ of Unilever is a great opportunity for those who do not speak Dutch as it operates in a multinational environment – in the department where I work there are colleagues from approximately 20 different countries! I thought I would fit perfectly in an environment like this. Unilever has really strong brands, which is a nice opportunity from a branding perspective. An additional reason for joining Unilever was that I have never worked in the FMCG industry and I was interested in how it works. Finally, I saw it is a great opportunity to start working in the Europe HQ right away, as real strategic thinking and innovations are part of the everyday work here.

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As a Brand Development Intern I am working on marketing materials: key visuals, product packages, product samples, digital assets or TV spots. As this is the Europe HQ, a big proportion of my time is for communication with the different countries where we operate, supplying them with materials, aligning the regions with each other. A usual day for me consists of proceeding with 2-3 bigger projects, and solving several minor issues. I was lucky in my internship as I have received not only support tasks, but my own projects as well where I could lead the work. I am the most proud of an internal activation, where we introduced our new product to our colleagues in the building – it was a day full of fun.

Working at Unilever has given me a lot of insight into how the FMCG industry operates, what does it mean to sell products directly to the people and how you can convince them to buy your products every day, again and again. It was a nice learning in terms of communicating and working together with many agencies and countries from all around the world. I was impressed how much Unilever is focusing on sustainability and protecting the environment. I have discovered that Unilever is a great, innovative and modern company, and I am proud to belong one of the biggest FMCG companies.

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Marketing

London Fashion Week, Creating a New Brand & Free…

This makes it sound like my first placement on the Marketing UFLP has been all fun – which a lot of it has – but there has of course been a lot of hard work too!

I am nearly 5 months into my first marketing role on the UFLP.  I am currently in my global role sitting within the Global Brand Development (BD) Team for TIGI.  TIGI has been a really interesting place to begin my Unilever career as it was a brand acquired just 3 years ago. This has meant that I have come into a brand with a strong heritage and unique ways of working.  For example, TIGI rarely use marketing agencies and instead we have an in house creative team. This means I get to work closely with designers and as a result am heavily involved and have a real input in the creative process.

My main project since I began has been working on the creation and development of a completely new brand for TIGI.  As a result I am gaining a real understanding of how a product makes it to market, right through from concept development to execution.  I have been leading decisions around what fragrance and formulation to use right through to planning the best communication strategy for the brand. The early stages of developing the brand have also meant that I have been working across functions a lot. I spend a lot of time talking to R&D, supply chain and legal which is great and demonstrates how marketing allows you to work across the whole organisation. Working in a global team means you are creating a product that will go into a number of regions and markets and so I spend a lot of time talking to colleagues in local markets to ensure what we are developing in BD will be successful in different markets.

In February I was fortunate enough to attend some shows at London Fashion Week.  Catwalk one of the brands within the TIGI portfolio works with a number of designers, and members of the TIGI hair creative team do the hair at all the major fashion weeks around the world!  This is why I never turn down an opportunity to get my hair done for free at the TIGI Academy by one of the team!