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Find out what its like to work with SMEs

Back in 2017, I did a nine-week Business Banking summer internship where I got hands-on experience of an analyst’s responsibilities and the challenges they face. When Barclays offered me a place on their graduate programme, I had no doubt it was the right move for my career.

Business Banking allows me to do something important for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), the pulsing heart of this country’s economy. The environment is really friendly and there’s such a variety of roles, each of them requiring a different skillset. I’m now on my fourth rotation, and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I’ve joined the Direct Team taking care of Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan (CBIL) applications.

It’s been very rewarding helping people impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

Day to day, I call clients who are looking to apply for a CBIL above £100,000. I make sure they meet the eligibility requirements and I try to answer all their questions. I then check their risk grade and KYC markers, and I put them in contact with a credit writer. Throughout all of this, I’m the main point of contact for the client.

I’ve never had a customer-facing role before, but it’s been very rewarding helping people impacted by the crisis. Our decisions can be crucial for the future of their businesses and therefore their success. This makes me feel proud and important, but I’m also conscious of the responsibility we all have.

Thinking of my journey so far, something that really stands out has been the opportunity to meet lots of graduates and to build strong friendships. When I wake up in the morning, I feel motivated and excited – I get to work in a place full of friends.