Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thill Logistics Internship

Yushuang Shan

Thill Logistics, Inc. operates as one of the largest fulfillment operations in the Midwest, offering third party logistics support for its clients in the areas of fulfillment, customer service, outbound telemarketing, e-commerce, and real-time analytics.

I am currently the outbound telesales consultant at Thill Logistics. Many people have said that telemarketing is not a very good job to start with, but in my opinion, I prefer to start from the beginning. I work with our team to achieve sales goals; our job is to try to maximize the sales savings of our campaign.

We call customers that have previously ordered products, and try to convince them to reorder more products. Many sales techniques are used during the conversation. When I first started at this internship, I had no idea what to say, or how to respond to customers’ questions. There are always times that customers will come up with questions that I hasve never heard before.

At my internship, I have the opportunity to work on different campaigns. The products vary from drinks that help relieve arthritis to mascara that enhances the thickness of eyelashes. Recently, I started working on a slice machine that is a digital cutter that cuts out letters or shapes.

In order for us to gain more sales, we have to have a really good understanding of each product that we are selling. The most challenging part of this job is when customers ask questions that I am not familiar with.

When I first started, I always referred to my notes when having conversations with customers. As time goes on, I think I have learned a lot from this job and I feel this is really good practice for my future career.

For my future career, I still want to be a sales representative. This internship has gained my knowledge on sales techniques, and it has also improved my professional speaking.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wheel and Sprocket Internship

Marc Prellwitz
SCOM/ Purchasing Intern

I am currently a purchasing and sales intern with the internet sales division of Wheel and Sprocket. Wheel and Sprocket is one of the top bicycle retailers in the nation and includes six stores as well as two different web based stores. I currently work out of the Oshkosh store, which also contains the mountain bike parts division of the online sales program.

In my position I am responsible for a wide variety of daily and monthly activities relating to the web store development. I work closely with industry representatives and distributors to find closeout components and parts that we sell online through various platforms. On a daily basis I must assess the items we are bringing in or will potentially be bringing in and weigh the risks associated with them. The goal is to be constantly improving the quality and price of the items we bring in in order to improve our sales.

In addition to focusing on the purchasing side of our internet sales, I also am responsible for managing the inventory when we receive it. I developed and implemented a simpler and easier to use ID system for our items once they are activated on the web stores so that it is easier for our shipping employees to find products. Prior to the system, an employee who was supposed to ship required a rather in-depth knowledge of different types and characteristics of the components. With the labeling system I developed, it is much easier and faster for people to simply use the system instead.

The final part of my internship focuses on evaluating sales figures and deciding what we should bring back and what items we should avoid. I have been surprised multiple times with this part of my job. Items that I was sure would be high grossing and fast sellers have sat for weeks while items I was sure wouldn’t succeed have flown off the shelves.

My internship has taught me a lot about inventory management. It has allowed me to put to use some of the knowledge I have gained during my time here at UWO and utilize techniques developed in much larger companies. It has allowed me to grow and stand on my own with a large amount of responsibility. Especially during the winter months storefront sales are down, so my department becomes a much bigger part of the sales during the time period. With my applications of large-scale corporation techniques to our smaller web based sales department we should be able to improve over last year’s sales and utilize our money better with smarter buys and faster sales.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Oshkosh Corporation Internship

Jared Petersen

Oshkosh Corporation is a Fortune 500 Company that designs and builds the world's toughest specialty trucks and access equipment by working shoulder-to-shoulder with the people who use them every day. Oshkosh is continually improving the perfect by making it their business to understand the struggles of their customers' jobs, and to than deliver vehicles that out-perform anything else on the market. Oshkosh is then able to back those vehicles with a 24/7 global service network. Oshkosh has been able to maintain their excellence because they strive for diversification and with this; they are able to leverage their technologies to create profounding competitive advantages across several different markets. This strategy has earned Oshkosh a top leadership position in every truck market they enter.

I am currently the Shared Treasury Intern at Oshkosh Corporation, working directly with the V.P. of Finance and the Treasury Team to ensure our cash is being used as effectively and efficiently as possible. Our team focuses on activities such as cash management, lender management, hedging management, investor relations, and bank relations. Each responsibility is divided out among each member of the team based on each individuals strengths and areas of specialty.

As an intern I have the privilege to be involved in a little bit of each responsibility listed above. My daily responsibilities consist of EFT (Electronic Fund Transfer) verification, prior day reconciliation, account balance tracking, remitting EFT’s, calculating and positioning current day cash balances, and distributing the debt message and dashboard to senior management. The most important responsibility assigned to me is the current day cash positioning. I pull the bank reports, calculate the overall balance in all of our accounts, and then let senior management know if we are positive or negative. If we are positive, we then pursue short term low risk investments such as Treasury Bills; if we are negative we will decide where to redeem our cash with the lowest penalty.

Other than my daily tasks, I was also given various projects. These projects include creating an internal auditing database, lender analysis, bank account fee analysis, bank entitlement form organization, and credit application processing. I enjoy these projects because it allows me to see different departments within Oshkosh, and gives me a taste for the type of work they each do. Any time a project is offered, I am more than happy to take it to further my understanding and knowledge of the different business activities.

Whether it is a project or a daily task of mine each responsibility requires reporting. There are two main daily reports which I distribute all the way up to the CFO (Chief Financial Officer) level. These two reports are the daily treasury dashboard and the daily debt message. Both reports show our daily activity, interest expense, debts spread, and weekly debt forecast. The difference between the two reports is the dashboard is sent via e-mail, where the debt message is sent verbally over voice messaging. Being given the responsibility to report directly to senior management is very rewarding to me.

My experience with Oshkosh Corporation has been nothing but excellent. I have been able to provide Oshkosh with an internal auditing database, a foreign currency analysis spreadsheet, a more efficient foreign exchange filing system, and an automated dashboard. On the other hand, Oshkosh has demonstrated to me the importance of a hard work ethic, has taught me fundamental business ethics, has increased my knowledge of accounting procedures, has introduced me to the corporate environment, has surrounded me with the most knowledgeable and talented personnel to work with and learn from, and most importantly, showed me the qualities and attributes of a company I would enjoy working for full time.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Oshkosh Corporation Internship

Emily Merten

I am an Accounting/Finance Intern with Oshkosh Corporation. Oshkosh Corporation currently has four business segments: Access Equipment, Defense, Fire and Emergency, and Commercial. McNeilus Truck and Manufacturing is part of the Commercial segment and one of Oshkosh Corporation’s nine major business units. One of my responsibilities in the Shared Credit Services department is to identify accounts with credit risk for McNeilus Truck and Manufacturing. With this responsibility, I must contact McNeilus’s customers to ensure accounts are within their assigned credit limits. It is important to any company, as it is to Oshkosh Corporation, to promptly collect their credit sales to keep their business running. I also facilitate credit card transactions, gather information on dispute issues, collect delivery information, and distribute copies of statements and invoices to customers.

Along with my everyday responsibilities, I am able to strengthen my professional development in other ways. I sit in on conference calls with our customer support representatives located throughout the country so that I can get a greater understanding of how my department’s responsibilities fit into the “big picture” of the company. I also attend meetings with other departments that inform the employees on what is happening with the business and what its goals are for the future.

I have found that everyone is very helpful at Oshkosh Corporation. My supervisor and coworkers are very willing to take the time to explain any questions I have. They motivate me to not only work hard in the office, but in my schooling as well. It was humbling that from my first day, everyone in my office was so welcoming.

The College Relations department work to insure that interns enjoy their experience with the company. They are always willing to listen to any problems interns may have and help to find a solution. Also, the College Relations department sets up events for the interns to further their experience and professional development. These events allow you to get to know other interns and learn about their role in the company.

My experience so far with Oshkosh Corporation has been wonderful and has taught me many skills that I can use in future roles. I have been able to grow not only as a student, but an employee as well. I am so grateful for knowledge I have gained throughout my short time with Oshkosh Corporation.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Sarah Kissinger
BBA: Human Resources

Society Insurance is located in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. It is a regional niche player in insuring commercial-only small to mid-size businesses in Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, and Indiana. They specialize in insuring restaurants, grocery stores, taverns, cleaning services, and other niche markets like movie theatres and dining restaurants. If you take a walk in downtown Oshkosh, all those types of businesses are what Society insures.

I am currently the Human Resources Intern at Society Insurance. One of my responsibilities includes assisting in the recruitment process. This involves job posting, entering candidate information in the applicant tracking system, assisting with phone screens, setting up interviews, and administering testing. I also help with the on-boarding process when we hire a new employee. I prepare salary analyses for open positions by collecting data from various reports; I submit internal salary data to authorized data vendors, and track insurance institute training. I also work on different projects assigned and help with coordinating employee events.

Along with all my responsibilities, I am able to shadow my supervisor to experience everything that is done in the Human Resources Department. For example, I was able to sit in on a court hearing over the phone. This was a really neat experience for me to be able to see how the law fits in with Human Resources and apply the knowledge from my classes to the court case. My supervisor tries to include me in on as much as he can so I can grasp the full aspect of what it is like to work in the Human Resources department.

Society Insurance has an internship program that has taught me a lot about insurance. In this program, we attended presentations where we learned about each department and then went on various job shadows. This showed me how Society Insurance runs as a whole and not just in the Human Resources department.

I have learned a lot in the first few months of my internship. I have been able to apply what I have learned in the College of Business to real life experiences. This has given the opportunity to grow as professional and not just as a student.