Country of origin: United Kingdom
Placement: Spiral Health CIC
Management and IT student Christopher worked with Spiral Health CIC in Preston for his placement year.
I had little work experience before University and being in the Management School on an open day I quickly realised the high calibre of people there. I was informed that I had two choices for my degree; a 3 year or a Sandwich 4 year degree. I decided to choose the sandwich degree as I knew the skills I would learn and the experience gained would pay off.
I took on many roles during my time at Spiral Health CIC; one was analysing data from the wards to produce a monthly contract monitoring report of the unit statistics. I was made project manager of a new incident reporting system known as ‘Datix’ and its implementation to the units, as well as being appointed the administrator of the system where I had exclusive access to edit the system and change it to the needs of the people using it. During the Datix Implementation I trained nurses on our ward in Royal Preston Hospital. Having a background in IT meant I was always on hand to develop the company’s existing IT. I went on to produce a new patient referral system helping in the referring of patients and also making it easier to pull off statistics. Furthermore I also aided implementation and took on the role of marketing a new therapy service. I did all the branding aspects with individual designs for different purposes, including the signage and creation of the logo.
From day one Spiral Health have been so supportive and understanding, opening me up to new things I never thought I could do. It was a great experience working with a social enterprise and would recommend anyone looking for something different and enjoys a good company culture to keep social enterprises in mind when considering a placement year. It didn’t always go smoothly but the company allowed me to reflect on what I had done wrong and how I can do better next time. I have met some amazing people with great stories and expertise who have listened to me and helped me grow as a person. I was able to travel to different business events for social enterprises and healthcare organisations like international conferences on healthcare systems. From this experience I know it would be an option to go into the healthcare sector aiding in the IT department to make a more IT user friendly experience for healthcare staff. I have learned different communication techniques for different people in the company from delivering presentations to senior management on where the project is at, to scheduling and coordinating meetings with the matrons of the wards.
Leading up to my placement year, the careers team helped me to develop my CV and did a mock interview giving me constructive feedback. The team were really helpful and I would definitely recommend that you book an appointment with them when applying for a placement year.