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Graduate Careers

This information is provided for general reference ONLY. We strongly suggest you consult you local or University Careers Service for professional advice.

Why do employers want graduates?
All employers are looking for employees to demonstrate a combination of knowledge, skills and personal qualities.

  • Knowledge, this usually is related to the degree subject studied but also understanding of the life experiences acquired from living independently during you University life.
  • Skills, typically intellectual and other key skills used to undertake study. Critical evaluation and interpretation of evidence, which can be used to make a decision. Other skills include oral communication, team working, IT,numeracy which are not to be underestimated.
  • Personal Qualities such as adaptability, creativity, involvement, the ability to work under pressure and initiative.

How do employers try to identify graduates with these qualities? Knowledge to a degree of accuracy can be determined by your academic record. Skills can be defined on your CV and listed and adapted for specific roles. Personal qualities is slightly more tricky, recruiters look for you to demonstrate involvement at an organisational level in university clubs, societies or sports. Additionally involvement in community based activities, vacation work and / or travel is also a plus. Recruiter want to see that you are able to organise and importantly get involved in activities over and above academic study, that you have a good balance between work and recreational activity.

Significant to graduates is their ability to bring a fresh approach, innovative thought and drive to the role. It is assumed that because graduates have not had the opportunity to demonstrate their skills in the workplace, they are ambitious to succeed. Its this ambition and drive that most graduate employers are looking to harness.

Deciding what to do?
Often graduates feel that their first role after graduation will set them on a career path that will determine the rest of their career. This is often not the case, so don't be reluctant to accept a role if its does not fully meet your expectations. In the context of you career from beginning to end your first job may not represent what you do during the majority of you career. The important thing is that you can demonstrate a clear career goal and that there are no significant gaps in your employment.

The Reality
The reality is that approximately 200,000 students graduate from UK Universities each year. There aren't 200,000 graduate jobs or training schemes for each graduate so competition is fierce. Most graduates are equipped with similar knowledge, skills and qualifications so the important thing is make the most of any opportunity that presents itself. If you don't its guaranteed that someone else will.

Making the most of an opportunity in reality means going the extra yard. Be prepared to relocate to a different part of the country, be prepared to take a reduced salary initially it may not be the £22k - 25k that you have dreamt of whilst at University but if it pays your rent and gets you started its a platform from which to launch your career.

The important thing is that you get your foot in the door, you have the ability and the drive so go out there and get it!

This information is provided for general reference ONLY. We strongly suggest you consult you local or University Careers Service for professional advice.

Here is a selection of jobs from both SMEs and large organisations recruiting graduates right now.

  • Property Negotiator - Foxtons (Pinner)

    Shortlist Location: South East, London
    Salary: Competitve + benefits
    Foxtons offices are incredible landmarks situated in the very best locations across London. Foxtons minis not only stand out from the typical branded car but also act as hundreds of mobile billboards moving through Surrey's many different towns and villages. Foxtons.co.uk

  • 6 Trainee Recruitment Consultants Required

    Shortlist Location: London
    Salary: £18,000 to £30,000 + benefits + OTE
    My client is a rapidly expanding recruitment consultancy that is looking for dynamic and enthusiastic Trainee Recruitment Consultants to join their central London team. The company is a true meritocracy where promotion is gained by those who are the most successful

  • MDS - Graduate Management Trainee

    Shortlist Location: Rest of Europe (excl. UK and Eire), Rest of World (excl. Europe), Nationwide
    Salary: Competitive + benefits
    MDS Bridges the gap between university and a successful career MDS is a unique partnership of 26 member companies, ranging from SMEs to major multiples, working together with common goals…growers, suppliers and retailers of vegetables, salads, fruit, flowers and plants. Graduate

  • Network Rail - Property Graduate Scheme

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: £26,500 + benefits
    Network Unlimited Shape Victorian stations. The UK’s entrepreneurial landscape. And everything in between. Property graduate scheme Salary: £26,500 + any regional allowances + £2,000 welcome bonus Requirements: At least a 2:2 in a RICS-accredited Property degree that allows you to follow

  • Network Rail - Finance Graduate Scheme

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: £26,500 + benefits
    Network Unlimited Shape Victorian stations. The UK’s entrepreneurial landscape. And everything in between. Finance graduate scheme Salary: £26,500 + any regional allowances + £2,000 welcome bonus Requirements: At least a 2:2 in any subject (not necessarily finance-related) along with flexibility about

  • Network Rail - Civil Engineering Graduate Programme

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: £26,500 + benefits
    Network Unlimited Shape Victorian stations. The UK’s entrepreneurial landscape. And everything in between. Civil Engineering graduate programme Salary: £26,500 + any regional allowances + £2,000 welcome bonus Requirements: At least a 2:2 in a degree accredited by ICE along with flexibility

  • Hilti - Legal Credit Controller (15mths Fixed Term)

    Shortlist Location: North West
    Salary: Competitive + benefits + Bonus
    We passionately create enthusiastic customers and build a better future! In doing so we live our values: integrity, courage, teamwork and commitment. We supply innovative solutions offering superior added value to construction professionals in 120 countries throughout the world. For our

  • Network Rail - Business Technology Graduate Scheme

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: £26,500 + benefits
    Network Unlimited Get the most out of NASA-grade technology. 600,000sq ft of retail space. And everything in between. Business Technology graduate scheme Salary: £26,500 + any regional allowances + £2,000 welcome bonus Requirements: At least a 2:2 in any subject along

  • Hilti - Specification Engineer - Greater London

    Shortlist Location: London
    Salary: £30,000 + benefits + Bonus
    Hilti offers outstanding career opportunities in one of the world`s most successful companies in the construction industry. We passionately create enthusiastic customers and build a better future! In doing so we live our values: integrity, courage, teamwork and commitment. We supply

  • Network Rail - Supply Chain Graduate Scheme

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: £26,500 + benefits
    Network Unlimited Get the most out of NASA-grade technology. 600,000sq ft of retail space. And everything in between. Supply Chain graduate scheme Salary: £26,500 + any regional allowances + £2,000 welcome bonus Requirements: At least a 2:2 in any subject (a

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Recruiting now:

turnstoneVine GraduateHigher the TalentSpencer HarringtonGraduate Fasttrack
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Santander
Cargill logo
associated british foods graduate scheme
Matalan
explore learning
sky graduate scheme
BP International
National Audit Office
Enterprise Rent-A-Car
Jeremy Gardner Assoc
BAE Systems Applied Intelligence
Barclays
HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
RM plc
John Lewis 2014
Network Rail Oct 2014
Scottish Power 2014
HILTI
Decathlon
Schroders
KPMG
CHP Consulting
BAE 2014