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My software engineering summer internship with FactSet

During the summer of 2021, I completed a Software Engineering Internship at a financial services firm called FactSet. FactSet provides datasets and data feeds for financial institutions to make better informed decisions and has over 5,000 clients. The internship lasted 10 weeks and although the UK office is based in London, I completed my internship completely virtually.

How I landed the job

I applied to FactSet as I knew a software engineer who worked there and I enjoyed hearing about their experiences. The application process was relatively straightforward and quick. The first stage (after sending my CV of course) was a telephone interview, which comprised of questions about motivation and previous projects, as well as a few technical questions. Shortly after, the final stage was an online face-to-face meeting, involving two technical interviews and a more detailed look into the company. After that, I was offered the internship… and was given a really warm welcome when I joined!

What did I do during the ten weeks?

During my internship, I was placed into a team of six engineers, some of whom had over ten years of experience and some who had only graduated the year before! The team was split between both the London and Manila offices and oversaw an internal tool that was used by FactSet engineers millions of times an hour. My project was to help aid the cloud migration of some components that provided key functionality to this tool. I took part in daily stand-up meetings with the team to gain a wider understanding of the product while completing my project with the help of my manager, a junior software engineer in the team. I finished the internship by presenting my work to the whole London office!

I also got to collaborate with both Software Engineering and Consulting interns on a Mergers and Acquisitions project. We had to research and find a company that would be ideal for acquisition by FactSet and pitch it to senior directors at the company.

What did I enjoy the most?

  • Learning Software Engineering principles that are crucial when building products on such a large scale. The importance of code versioning and code reviewing was made clearer than ever
  • Working with highly skilled engineers and learning from them and their past experiences
  • Being introduced to some new technologies (Terraform, FastAPI) and learning a new language (Perl)
  • Communicating across borders with engineers from all around the world

What could have been better?

  • Working in the office and meeting the team in person would have made the experience even better
  • There were not many social events within the team due to COVID

Final Reflection

I thoroughly enjoyed my internship at FactSet, and I have developed so much as a professional during that short period. I would recommend all students to try as many internships as they can and get a taste of the world of work. It prepares you a lot more than any amount of lectures and practical sessions can.

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Steve Thomas

Hi, I'm Steve, from Collingwood College and I'm a level 4 Computer Science student.
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