In my student job at SEB, I get to put my knowledge to the test
Students who do spare-time work at SEB in addition to their studies get an opportunity to complement their theoretical skills with experiences that can be really important when they take the step into working life.
“This is definitely something I can recommend to other students. I am gaining an experience of this sector that I would not otherwise get.”
So says Thea Prytz, a third-year student at the Gothenburg School of Economics. Hannes Svensson, who is in the final year of his master’s programme at the same college, agrees with her.
“Seeing how things actually function in a workplace is a major plus as a complement to studies,” he says.
Both Thea and Hannes have student jobs at SEB’s customer service, 24/7 telephone bank, at the bank’s Nordstan branch in Gothenburg. Working alongside studies is naturally a good way to strengthen your finances but the experience of working at a bank is probably just as important.
“Absolutely,” says Hannes, who has worked at SEB since 2019,
“Here I get a feeling for business that I don’t think I would get otherwise. In particular, I learn to identify problems and find solutions,” he continues.
“Here at SEB, I get to put my knowledge to the test,” adds Thea, who has been at the bank since 2020.
What does the practical work at SEB look like for Hannes and Thea?
“I started working at customer service and there it was often what you might call everyday banking matters. But after further training here at the bank, I now also work with advisory services, mainly related to mortgages,” says Hannes.
Thea explains that her work at the telephone bank mostly involves informing customers about what they can do themselves and how to do it.
“In addition to issues I help customers with, I do a lot of guiding on the Internet bank. I am not involved with direct advisory services so for me the job also includes passing customers on to the right person,” she explains.
Both Hannes and Thea believe that this direct contact with customers is enormously instructive.
“It means there is a big focus on problem-solving,” says Hannes.
Are customers ever irritated and angry and, if so, how do you solve this?
“This does happen, above all with customers who had to wait for a very long time. But then it’s important to handle this in a professional way. But most customers are very pleasant and those who are irritated do lighten up when they find that we are actually trying to help them solve the situation,” says Thea.
Before they started their jobs at SEB, both Hannes and Thea, like everyone who has similar jobs, received a short training at the bank. There are also opportunities for further training, which Hannes has used.
“In addition to the practical work, the course also provided a very good insight into the banking world,” says Thea.
When, and how much, do you work at SEB per week and how does this affect your studies?
“One big advantage is the flexible working hours. The Telephone bank is open every day so there is often evening and weekend work. Personally, I work between 20 and 25 hours a week,” says Hannes.
“For me, it’s often 15 hours a week,” says Thea.
Neither Hannes nor Thea believe that these many hours of work have had a negative impact on their studies. Rather the opposite.
“When I work, I switch off studying and this actually gives me more energy for my studies,” insists Thea, who like Hannes has no problem recommending other students to work alongside their studies.
“When we finish our studies we will already have experience from a workplace. This is a big advantage,” explains Hannes.
“Furthermore,” Thea adds, “we also have our summer jobs at the bank when we work full time. So our summer jobs are already fixed.
SEB is also actively seeking students who would like an extra job alongside their studies. The bank takes part in career fairs, at the School of Economics and elsewhere, and is also greatly helped by social media when it comes to attracting students who want to gain experience in the banking world. One aim, as far as the bank is concerned is, of course, to also present an attractive choice when students apply for their first job after graduation.
Both Hannes and Thea have absolutely nothing against continuing at SEB after their studies.
“Where I now give me an extremely good overview of the bank’s organisation and different functions. When I see all the different career opportunities available, SEB appears to be a very good place to work,” he says.
Thea feels the same and would also like to highlight another key factor.
“I work with a very good group, so it’s always fun to go to work.”