Amanda and Natalie, recent Accenture grads, share their experience at the Accenture Technology Associate Academy, a 2 week training course that provides new Tech grads an introduction to some of the key concepts and topics within the industry. The course also gives new grads an opportunity to build relationships with their peers and leaders.
There’s nothing worse than feeling unprepared, uninformed, and unsure about what’s going to happen next. Take a bunch of people in the same situation, put them all together and you have everyone in Associate Academy! What was great about this 2 week training program, was that everyone around you was just as clueless, nervous and eager to start their journey here at Accenture.
Joining Accenture Technology, but having limited knowledge or skills about the different tools used in a graduate's day to day job can leave you feeling like you're at the bottom of the food chain again. In 2 weeks, we were able to get a taste of popular technical tools such as AWS Cloud, GIT and Splunk, as well as diving into hot topics like DevOps, Artificial Intelligence, and Continuous Integration/Delivery. Having heard these names in the past but not being quite sure what they entail, we can now confidently have a conversation and show a basic level of understanding.
As a more technical person, I personally struggle a lot with the non-technical aspects, especially planning and presenting. I was grateful for the workshops on storytelling and design thinking as it taught me a lot of helpful techniques we can apply to become more efficient and strategic, such as the Rose Bud Thorn method. As for the icing on the cake, we spent 3 days experiencing Agile with Carsten Viet, which was made interesting and fun through a mini project on the Pokémon Go mobile app. We got to see everyone's creativity through their final product, and in one group a thrilling live Pokémon battle as part of their presentation. The best part was that we all came out Agile certified!
Although there was a lot to take in, the 2 weeks didn't feel dry or exhausting thanks to our great facilitators, Jas, Zaneta and Stav from the Accenture Technology team, and the delicious food to keep our morale up! They accompanied all the technical skills that we learned, with life skills that I will carry through my entire journey, such as meditation and the importance of being 'Truly Human', a term we use at Accenture to describe looking after your total selves - mind, body, heart and soul - so we can be our best professionally and personally. They also helped organise opportunities to network and bond through events such as glamping at Cockatoo Island, a dinner and drinks with leaders of different areas across Accenture and an unforgettable experience attending International Women's Day!
My biggest highlight would have to be the trip to Cockatoo Island, it was this short trip where everyone was able to bond. We sweated our way to victory in a scavenger hunt around the ENTIRE island (on a very hot day…), built Lego robots together and played intense rounds of werewolf around the campfire (where the quiet ones succeeded as the loud ones were killed off instantly). We can learn the technical/non-technical skills anywhere, but what Associate Academy has given us that we can’t get anywhere else, is the friendships and unforgettable memories with a group of people that welcomed everyone with open arms.