I was introduced my first Lego set when I was six. And from then on, I knew what I wanted to be. I wanted to build. This made me decide to take up Business Management to establish and manage my own construction firm.
I was always intrigued by the acronym “MDC” posted on almost every construction site I see around Makati and Taguig. I did my research and called Makati Development Corporation around the 1st week of May. I passed my resume and all their requirements, followed up on my application practically every other day, to no avail. Finally, after what seemed to be a year’s waiting, the Training Associate of MDC returned my call. She gave the good news to report to MDC as soon as possible. This was when I learned patience is truly a virtue.
Upon arrival at MDC head office, the Training Associate greeted me by asking if I could start working that day! I was dumbfounded! I was not interviewed nor orientated and yet I was told to begin working. Everything came too fast and so we have agreed I would start the following day, May 16th.
So that’s how I landed in my OJT position at the Procurement Department of Supply Management Division to train as a Procurement Specialist. The procurement team acquires and manages the goods and services needed for MDC’s construction projects.
On my first day, they really tested me, especially with my Tagalog. I’m sure they were all wondering who this “Dollar speaking” person was. Basically my job description is to create, encode and handle purchase orders and be the assistant to my supervisor, who is a Procurement Specialist.
Neil Tacderas However, they offered me more; I handled price negotiations with suppliers, closed deals with them as well as joined meetings with different companies for different projects, sent requests for quotations to vendors, and a great deal of crucial and important obligations. The people I worked with in the Procurement Department gave me so many opportunities to learn about handling their operations and the overall corporate environment.
During my first month in the MDC Head Office, I met a lot of different people with diverse culture and of different backgrounds and stories; from engineers to heads of the departments to the suppliers of materials for MDC. I even met people who worked in the Middle East where I grew up and I also met in the HR department. All in all the people there gave me a sense of family and friendship.
Every Monday there was free food for the new hires, and since the HR staff are so nice, they always let me have some. Also every day, a lunch lady sells restaurant grade, home-cooked food in a Styrofoam for around 50 pesos only. And for some reason, almost every other week, someone was having a birthday, and me being an opportunist, I had to have some of that cake. I honestly thought I would lose weight because of the stress and exercise I get running around the office, but no, there was always food available!
Since I’m always looking for something to do and yearning for adventure, my supervisor sent me to two project sites, one of which is the field office for Westgrove Estates in Sta. Rosa Laguna to actually train an employee. Westgrove was beautiful and it looked like Beverly Hills, and this is where I trained the newly hired Procurement Specialist. The field offices are like the front lines in a battle. They get all the dirty work and are exposed directly to the project site. Therefore most of the engineers and laborers are stationed there. It was a different environment where real construction work is.
Subsequently, I was stationed in Makati field office, located right on top of the Park Square parking, opposite Dusit Thani. There I worked with MDC’s procurement team for a week. They’re currently handling the supply of materials for Park Terraces, an Ayala premier residence, Holiday Inn, Glorietta redevelopment, Pittsburgh Residences, and other Ayala projects based in Makati. I was extremely lucky and grateful to get the chance to be brought to project site visits.
Near the end of my internship, I felt a bit uneasy for the fact that this epic journey is coming to an end. For all the people I met and all the friends I made, it was really hard knowing that I would not be able to work with them for a while since I still have one year left in SISFU.
I can proudly say, I could not have asked for a better internship experience.