Student practice is an opportunity for both students and companies

By: Nermina Kelic, UM Sarajevo

The UM Sarajevo agency, through its twenty-year activity on the BiH market, first as a media department, and then as a specialized agency, has always placed an important focus on the recruitment of young, curious people. Whenever there was a possibility to do so, we provided the opportunity for students to have their regular practice at our agency. Apart from considering this to be part of our socially responsible behaviour, it is a fact that it also brings a lot of benefits to the company. That is why we have a practice program that we have been implementing for several years now, and I must admit that it is mutually beneficial for both students and the agency as an employer.

Generational gap is becoming an increasingly serious problem for companies lately. It is very important that we adapt our business policy to the generations that are joining the labour market. These are young people who have grown up on significantly different concepts – concepts which we need to respect. But in order to acknowledge them, we need to understand them first. The mentoring program provides the opportunity for more experienced team members to come into contact with the generation of late Millennials, and partly the Generation Y, in a business setting. Having people with new, fresh mindset at your disposal is important for companies, especially those that work in our industry.

Good cooperation with the academic community is one of the important tasks of every business entity. Providing students the opportunity to practice is just one of the ways we can make a contribution. Perhaps it is time to stop looking at this as just an act of good will, and rather accept it as our duty, if we want to have quality staff on the labour market.

Call for doing student practice is constantly open, but occasionally we also do active recruiting of students at the Faculty of Economics. In cooperation with the Career Development Center there, two years ago we organized a presentation of the student practice program. In addition to having the chance to fill out the application forms, students could see a brief presentation of UM and the possibilities for practice, and they could ask everything they are interested in regarding work in this challenging industry. Our presence has caused great interest among students. The presentation has resulted in 114 submissions, of which, by careful selection, ten were selected. After arriving at the agency, students were given their mentor who, in this relatively short period, introduced them to agency’s work. They had the opportunity to go through all the departments active in UM Sarajevo.

Upon completion of the practice, we decided to give several of them a chance for a permanent engagement. We believe that a marketing agency is an excellent choice for the first work experience. It provides you the possibility to interact with different industries. Each new brief requires you to get acquainted with the sector from which the brand comes. When working with diverse clients, it’s as if every time you make a “field trip” into a different industry. One day you’re in retail, the next in the banking sector, then in the automotive industry, etc. Even if you decide not to spend your life in an agency, you’ll get a sneak peek into range of other industries.


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