Izzaty binti Zaini <br> Graduate of Alliance Bank Management Trainee Programme <br> Senior Executive, Capital Markets, Corporate Finance<br> Alliance Investment Bank Berhad<br>
What attracted you to the financial services industry? <br>I have always been interested in learning about how different companies in various industries operate and analyse financials of each of the companies. That is why I felt that the financial service industry is the best place for me.
How did you find out about the Alliance Bank MT (Management Trainee) programme? <br>I found out about the programme during a career fair. The representative was very friendly and helpful. She went out of her way to explain in greater detail about the programme structure. I also learned that Alliance Bank won the Best Graduate Programme, which attracted me to apply for the programme.
Why did you join an MT programme in the first place? <br>Fresh out of college, I have always known that I wanted to start my career with a smaller firm/corporation. Contrary to my peers’ views, I believe that it is the best avenue for me to kick start my career and learn as much as I can in a smaller organisation. As a small and compact banking institution, Alliance Bank’s Management Trainee programme gives fresh graduates a taste of how each department works and let them figure out their interests during the rotation.
Can you share your experience about the programme: <br>a. Getting into the programme itself <br>b. The projects you’ve been a part of <br>c. What learning opportunities you were given <br>d. The different departments you were involved with <br>e. Learning under different leaders <br>f. The most important lesson you learnt from your experience <br>g. Your mentor and how he/she helped shaped your view of the industry
I am glad to say that I have been enjoying my time at Alliance Bank. I had great team members for my rotation, as well as for my placement. We were given the opportunity to work on various projects and assignments during our rotation which have led to a better understanding of where the Bank is heading in the future.
Working under different leaders pushed me to become more agile and adaptable to changes. One of the perks of the MT programme is that each MT is assigned a mentor, most of whom are team leads. My mentor was very helpful in advising me when I am faced with challenges at work and generous with sharing her experiences being in the industry. The mentor-mentee journey has really given me a broad view of the corporate world.
The next step for you? <br>Continue to learn about the various types of corporate exercises and keep myself well-informed of the latest news, in order to give meaningful ideas to my team or advice to the clients.
What’s great about the programme and why would you recommend it to other? <br>After I graduated from college, I was unsure of what I wanted to do or how I wanted to start my career. I feel like the rotation was a good platform for me to figure out my interest. We are also given an opportunity to connect with the top management and understand the Bank’s initiatives in greater depth.
What skill/quality do you think is needed to be successful in this programme? <br>Be resourceful. Coming in as an MT, you are given a lot of opportunity to work in different departments. It goes without saying that people have a certain expectation on your performance. Always ask questions proactively, voice new ideas, and do not merely rely on your supervisors.
George Teh Graduate of Alliance Bank Management Trainee Programme Senior Executive, Middle Office Support, Group Corporate, Commercial & Transactions Alliance Bank Malaysia Berhad
What attracted you about the financial services industry? <br>In my opinion, the financial services industry is one of that is very broad, as it not only focuses on a specific sector but all financial services components as a whole. It is a very interesting sector to go into, as banking and financial services are not as straightforward as they seem.
My role in the Bank calls for me to understand our customers’ business, so we can structure a product or facilities to cater to their financial needs. The customers come from different industries, which means we have to have an in-depth understanding on not just their business, but what is happening in their respective sectors as well. This provides me with a diversity of experience and I strongly believe it is an interesting yet challenging career path.
How did you find out about the Alliance Bank MT (Management Trainee) programme? <br>I discovered the MT programme through Jobstreet while looking for opportunities in banking. The process was straightforward which includes multiple assessments, interviews and interactive activities with other fellow applicants.
Why did you join an MT programme in the first place? <br>It is a holistic programme that provides young graduates opportunities to see how the bank operates as a whole through its multi department rotation.
Can you share your experience about the programme: <br>a. Getting into the programme itself It was a straight forward online application with very prompt follow-up by the HR.
b. The projects you’ve been a part of Throughout the rotation, under different departments, I had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects. For instance, I was involved in process improvement, credit review and setting up a customer care channel for customers, under the tutelage of more experienced colleagues.
c. What learning opportunities you were given Through the rotation, we were exposed to the different areas of the Bank which, without a doubt, provided insight and in-depth understanding of various processes and each department’s function and contribution to the Bank.
d. The different departments you were involved with In short, we went through at least 15 departments in the Bank, covering almost every department available. The most memorable attachment I had was with Group Corporate, Commercial and Transactions, where I was given a glimpse of the day-to-day task of a relationship manager. From there, I could see myself enjoying the task which includes understanding the business requirements, preparing a paper and attending to the customer’s needs.
e. Learning under different leaders Having the opportunity to engage and interact with respective head of departments as part of the programme rotation was definitely an eye opener. I had the chance to personally witness their business practices and also received insightful advice from them.
f. The most important lesson you learnt from your experience The programme taught me that working in silo will not get me to the finish line. It takes collaboration and team effort to achieve the final objective.
g. Your mentor and how he/she helped shaped your view of the industry My mentor, Mr Chan Kin Yoong played the role of a career advisor as he took the time to understand what my goals and aspirations were. After understanding my professional likes and dislikes, he guided me to the roles which he thought I would enjoy doing in the long run. For this, I am very thankful to him for his guidance.
The next step for you? <br>To dive deep into my role currently as a Relationship Manager, especially in understanding the required skills for the role. I would then hone my skills so that I can perform better in that role.
What’s great about the programme and why would you recommend it to other? <br>The hands-on experience you obtain throughout the MT journey will inevitably provide you with a holistic view of the banking industry. Having this one of a kind programme and experience definitely added value to my personal experience and exposure.
What skill/quality do you think is needed to be successful in this programme? <br>To keep an open mind and be willing to learn.