The invaluable experience gained in the Ibec Global Graduates programme – Orla McAteer’s story

Orla is a Marketing Coordinator with Aramark part of the Ibec Global Graduates programme.

Tell us a few things about yourself

After growing up in Donegal, I graduated from LYIT with an honours Business degree, during which I spent a year studying in Spain. I then furthered my interest in marketing by completing a MSc in Marketing at QUB.

Before heading to Spain, I considered myself to be a home-bird, and hated the thought of stepping outside of my comfort zone. I pushed myself to go abroad and I have never looked back! Since then, I have loved travelling to new cultures and meeting people from around the world. After returning from Spain, I knew that I would love to work in an international company and be exposed to global markets.

I applied for the Ibec Global Graduates programme as it is gives you an opportunity to work in first-class, international companies and gain experience working within international markets. I also loved the idea of being able to pick up a postgraduate certificate in Global Business Leadership by the end of my placement.

Tell us about life as a Marketing Coordinator in Aramark?

Aramark is a leading integrated services supplier of facilities management, food, property and energy services. Impressively, 84% of Aramark’s clients are included on the Fortune 500 list. Aramark employs over 270,000 people worldwide and I’m excited to be placed in the Northern Europe (NE)HQ in Dublin. The NE business counts 17,000 employees.

The thing I love most about being a Marketing Coordinator with Aramark is the exposure I am getting immediately to so many diverse sectors, working on international projects. From the get go, I was given huge responsibility and worked alongside colleagues from departments such as: sales; procurement; energy services and technology. One of my favourite elements of my job is that I have been given the opportunity to travel throughout Ireland and the UK to work on various projects with a remarkable clientele. This allows me to observe some of the campaigns that I’m involved with being executed on the ground and it helps to build relationships with clients, and better understand their marketing needs.

The marketing department in Aramark is a very fast-paced, diverse working environment where no two days are the same. This type of environment has allowed me to learn new skills very quickly. The most rewarding thing about my job is having the opportunity to work on a project from the very beginning, being trusted to give my input and then being able to follow its development into a real-life marketing campaign.

My main duties in this role include developing quarterly campaigns and bespoke point of sale, planning retail promotions, creating content and social media management. After only 3 months working in this role I have gained invaluable experience and grasped an understanding of different business operations, the importance of making both internal and external connections, and the challenges faced with executing marketing strategies.

What are top tips you would like to share with graduates that wish to apply to this programme?

It is important when you are applying for the programme that you have confidence in yourself and your abilities. Prior to getting onto the Ibec Global Graduates Programme, I had worked in hospitality and retail, you would be surprised how many skills and good qualities you pick up in part-time roles – so use this to your advantage in interviews. When applying for roles, make sure that you are suited to the role and have a genuine interest in the company. Remember that you are not expected to know everything in your new role, but it is important to be willing to continuously learn and work hard to fit into your new working environment.

Why would you recommend this Multinational programme to other graduates?

I would recommend the Multinational Programme to graduates who want to experience international business whilst being constantly challenged. This is an extremely rewarding programme which requires a lot of hard work and commitment to both your placement and coursework. My biggest piece of advice is to get the most out of your 12 months by making strong connections and getting involved in as many projects as possible. This will help you develop many skills and give you an insight into the everchanging working world. The programme suits graduates who want to be given responsibility, be challenged in their day-to-day work and who want to experience the exposure of working in an international company.


If you would like to apply to a Brand Ambassador placement as part of the Ibec Global Graduates programme click here  to create your online application and apply to our August 2020 Brand Ambassador Programme!