ING has really surprised me
Bartu Parlak recently finished his internship at ING. He spent six months working in Communication & Employer Branding as part of his degree in international business and management at Rotterdam Business School. He already had some marketing and communication experience with small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs), and it came in very useful during his time at ING.
“I’ve done a lot of freelance work alongside my studies, so I’ve picked up quite a bit of knowledge about things like search engine optimisation and social media marketing. But after so many projects for SMEs, I was keen to see how things are done inside a big international organisation. I never dreamed I would be able to secure an internship at ING, but I was wrong. Initially, I didn’t think the internship vacancy within Employer Branding was right for me either, but I soon changed my mind during the very enjoyable interview.”
Fruits of your labours
“I was assigned a number of tasks during my internship, including updating the recruitment website and organising interviews and photo/video shoots, but I spent most of my time on marketing. I had every opportunity to put my knowledge of SEO, social media marketing and Google Analytics into practice. I analysed and evaluated the results of our LinkedIn activities, for example, and worked with my supervisor – the marketeer within the Employer Branding team – to develop a new approach. The team not only gave me lots of freedom and trust, but actually made changes based on my findings, which made my work extra rewarding. After all, you often hear that an intern’s research gets stuffed in a drawer and is never seen again! It’s always nice to see the fruits of your labours, such as the results of a photo or video shoot. You know that a whole team has worked hard on it, so it’s great when you see the final version and a good response on social media.”
“I can imagine that many students feel a little daunted by the idea of approaching ING, but they really don’t need to be. It really surprised me too – I immediately felt at home here, and the whole six-month period was great fun. It almost didn’t feel like work at all! The rest of my team were fantastic. It’s a very informal atmosphere rather than a hierarchical organisation, and people are always open to your wants and needs, input and strengths. Just before my internship ended I handed over to my successor. They’re doing a different type of degree, so their internship experience will probably end up being very different from mine too.”
Bartu actually spent many years working towards becoming a pilot, but in the end he was forced to give up on that dream for various reasons. “At first I couldn’t imagine myself doing anything else instead, but I’ve now found my calling in marketing.” He is due to graduate in the summer of 2020, and then he plans to carry on studying for a double master’s in management and marketing at Erasmus University. Bartu spends a lot of time reading, and poets and philosophers such as Fuzûlî and Fyodor Dostoevsky are a source of inspiration for him. To keep fit, he goes to the gym in his home town of Delft.