Coming into my internship at Source One Management Services this past fall, I felt both apprehensive and enthusiastic. Entering a new profession can be stimulating and I was eager to learn as much as possible about strategic sourcing and procurement. I remained slightly nervous because after graduating with a chemical research background, this would be my first practical experience in a business setting. Even though I had scoured the company website and memorized what my expected tasks would be in the analyst internship position, I still couldn’t picture what an average day’s work would look like.

Though I was mistaken in my assumptions about the workload, I was certainly correct about not being able to picture an average day at work. I never have to worry about being without an assignment, because there is always a project that someone needs my help with. My first few weeks with Source One consisted of mainly data entry and cleansing which proved to be some of my most valuable training because even though I mastered the tasks relatively quickly, it gave me a solid understanding of how the company operates. I learned the list of services we offer to clients, what subject matter experts are included in the Source One team, and what the sourcing process looks like from a hands-on point of view. Additionally, as part of my training, I completed readings from Managing Indirect Spend, written by members of our management team, which has given me a strong foundation in procurement and supply-chain management.

As I gained more experience, I was given progressively more analytical assignments that spread over a number of different industries. My projects have ranged from researching landscaping companies to benchmarking different marketing firms to executing company wide database overhauls for internal systems. I have particularly enjoyed doing auditing work for a company that supplies natural resources. As I graduated with a major in economics and a minor in chemistry, these assignments especially allowed me to merge my interests and gave me a deeper understanding of how I am contributing to impact everyday business.

In essence, it was the perfect transition from the classroom to the workplace.

The Source One workplace environment is open in both a literal and figurative sense, and the company culture fosters employee growth. Everyone from the director to the project analyst level know each other by name and is willing to answer the phone if even someone like myself, in an intern position, has questions. Source One has also hosted a variety of social events such as a Thanksgiving party, ping pong tournament, and industry happy hour which have reinforced the amicable and collaborative atmosphere.

Initially, I had hoped to gain some practical business experience, but I never expected to receive such a diverse breadth of exposure! In the future I hope to continue learning about new fields and eventually hone in on a few to master. Up until now I have particularly enjoyed working with direct spend, because it takes advantage of my economic based studies, and IT/Telecom, because it is a very forward-looking field. Based on my experience at Source One, I plan to continue a career in consulting so that I can continue to use fundamental knowledge and analytical skillsets to change the way people do business. 
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Zakariah Kulam

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