Saranyah Shanmugam on her internship at Tech Mahindra

In 2017 a number of students studying at Victorian education providers were chosen to participate in the newly created Victoria India Internship Program. The program, hosted by the Australia India Institute in Melbourne and the Australia India Institute @Delhi and supported by the Victorian Government’s Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources gave students the opportunity to work for Indian organisation based in Melbourne and India.  To learn more about internship opportunities, please email marianna.sarris@unimelb.edu.au

Saranyah Shanmugam, a recent graduate from the University of Melbourne, had the opportunity to intern at the Tech Mahindra office in Melbourne between November 2017 and January 2018.

Q:  Tell us a little about your internship, your duties and how you heard about it?

A: I’ve been a regular attendee at Aii events throughout my master’s program. I heard about the internship from a faculty member, who encouraged me to apply.

I interned for two months at Tech Mahindra Ltd (Tech M), an Indian multinational company which provides technology solutions. It is ranked one of the top five IT companies in India. I was fortunate to be selected as an intern within their Technological Sales Team

During the internship, I had the opportunity to attend several client and vendor meetings and obtain insights about emerging technologies. I submitted a report on Robotic Process Automation (RPA) explaining how Tech M can potentially leverage their business in future project developments. I was also one of the organising committee members for Christmas and year-end celebrations.

Q: When you talk to people about your internship what’s the first thing you tell them?

A: The first thing that comes to my mind is the friendly people at the Aii who helped me get this opportunity. Furthermore, the learnings I gained while working within the sales team were phenomenal. Not only were the sales team members some of the most senior and experienced people in the organisation but, at the same time, they were open to the ideas and suggestions I proposed, which motivated me to learn more and thrive at Tech M.

Q: What was the work environment like at your internship?

A: The organisation has a diverse and inclusive culture. Even in the short time I was there, I had the opportunity to collaborate with people from various departments, such as knowledge management, pre-sales and human resources. New ideas are encouraged and all staff members are empowered to speak up at all forums.

Q: What surprised you about the internship?

A: The complete recruitment process was very flexible and I was not expecting the internship offer to be rolled out so swiftly. I commenced work as an intern immediately after my graduation which helped me utilise my time efficiently. Furthermore, I got the opportunity to attend client visits and vendor briefings right from the outset, which is something I wasn’t expecting – especially at the beginning of the internship.

Q: What was a mistake you made that may assist other interns finding work in the same industry? What was the lesson you learnt?

A: I come from a strong technical background with prior work experience in software development. Therefore, it took me some time to understand sales and marketing strategies. I was able to address this by establishing a personal connection with the people in this area. My colleagues were only too happy to share their insights. Given the chance again, I could have better prepared for the internship by acquainting myself with some standard sales jargon, as well as basic accounting knowledge.

Q: What skills did you gain from the internship?

A: This internship was my first experience in a sales team and gave me a holistic idea of technology from sales engagement point of view. I also learned about how to interact with various stakeholders and vendors and, most importantly, how to deliver a short sales pitch. Furthermore, I had the opportunity to get hands-on experience on doing cost and revenue analysis.

Q: What’s next for you in your career?

A: After my internship, I was offered a full-time job at Accenture as a Security Consulting Analyst. The focus now is to take the learnings from my stint at Tech M and apply it in my new role at Accenture.

If you’re interested in undertaking an internship, visit the programme page here.