Summer Internship experience at HPCL

 | July 11,2011 06:14 pm IST

I had my apprehensions about my summer internship project, particularly, because HPCL was a Public Sector Company and I was not sure what kind of work environment I would find. But I realized on my joining day that the picture was very different from what I had imagined.


As soon as I reached HPCL office I was assigned a cubicle which was next to my mentor’s cabin and I was also provided with all necessary paraphernalia to successfully complete my project. My mentor introduced me to other members of the LPG SBU including the DGM. Since I had already talked to my mentor regarding my project before joining HPCL, I had spent some time in understanding about the HPCL businesses, which later proved very beneficial to me. I strongly advise the same to everyone to have an interaction with your mentor before going for your internship. It gives you a brief idea about the project and leaves a good impression on your mentor!


After a brief introduction, I and my mentor sat down for a detailed discussion on the project where he explained to me the deliverables and how I was supposed to go about the project. As I had already handled a live project on the related topic in my first year of MBA, under the guidance of a faculty at IIM Rohtak, I was able to understand the intricacies of the project better. My project was titled “Market Realignment and LPG Market Assessment”. I was supposed to analyze the LPG Market and to develop strategies to increase the penetration of HPCL in Domestic and Non –Domestic LPG cylinders market. I also had to study the Supply Chain network of HPCL in Punjab and establish which plant is strategically and logistically suitable for Punjab and other states in vicinity. I had a theoretical knowledge of supply chain management and basic marketing strategies now it was time to put all those theories into practice.


I spent the next 2 weeks visiting dealers, plants and distribution centers to learn about different stages in the Supply Chain of LPG. Since it was the end of financial year, most employees in my office as well as the plants I visited, were under tremendous work load but still helped me out in providing me with all the necessary data. I regularly used to inform my mentor, either through mail or personally, about my daily activities and the project’s progress. He would then give me feedback and suggested the improvements. This helped me to keep my focus on the core issue. After gaining a comprehensive understanding of the supply chain network, I brought my attention to the second phase of my project, which was suggesting a better transportation model to ascertain the most economical routes for LPG transfer from central plant.


Next step was to collect Point of Sale data and conduct a market survey. I prepared a questionnaire, with guidance from my mentor. This initiated the most daunting task of my internship. I covered around 300 Domestic and 200 Non-domestic LPG consumers under my survey.

 

At the end of this task I was left with only 3 weeks and still a long way to go. I spent the next two weeks compiling and analyzing the data with the use of various qualitative and quantitative tools to develop the strategies for market expansion.


During the last week, I prepared my final report and presentation. I gave a presentation in front of panel of four members which included my mentor and DGM. They were very impressed by my recommendations. I suggested whole sole changes in the distribution routes which would help HPCL prune spending due to inefficient network, which was currently under discussion as the possible network.


The best way to learn is to apply and that is what my summer internship was all about. I applied many principles of management and it has helped in ingraining these theories in my mind. I loved the challenge of working in a large scale project which was an enriching experience.


As I belong to the first batch of IIM Rohtak, I had a great responsibility as an ambassador of the institute. I wanted to make an impression so that the organization realizes the potential of the new born institute and am happy to say that I was able to do well in the project.

 

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