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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.

  • Digital Media Sales Executive – Graduate Position

    Shortlist Location: London
    Salary: 23k Basic, 35k OTE + benefits + OTE + Bonus
    Role: Digital Media Sales Executive – Graduate Position Salary: 23k Basic, 35k OTE Location: Central London Client My client is a multinational organisation that helps businesses to construct effective solutions to increase their investors and aid companies in reaching all their

  • Graduate IT Recruitment Consultant £20,000 - £35,000

    Shortlist Location: London
    Salary: £20000 to £35000 per annum negotiable depending on experience + benefits + OTE + Bonus
    Graduate IT Recruitment Consultant £20,000 basic salary £30,000 - £35,000 OTE in Year 1 West London We are an industry leading specialist IT Recruitment Company. Our approach is driven by improving service standards, learning, evolving and a willingness to enter new

  • Kuehne + Nagel - Graduate Programmes

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: £24,000 + benefits
    KNOW-HOW + NETWORKS Graduate Programmes Nationwide Opportunities £24,000 and a generous benefits package • Be at the heart of a million journeys • Join a global organisation running a 24/7 365 operation • Structured 2x year programme Kuehne + Nagel is

  • UK Account Manager (Phd Life Sciences Sales Jobs)

    Shortlist Location: North East, Nationwide
    Salary: £25 to 35k
    Job Title: UK Account Manager (PhD Life Sciences Sales Jobs) Job Location: Teesside Job Salary: £25-35k Contract Type: Perm / Full time Job Sector: Life Sciences / Sales / Pharmaceutical An exciting job opportunity has arisen for a bright PhD Life

  • Arriva UK Bus, General Management, The Shires & Essex

    Shortlist Location: South East
    Salary: £22,500
    Location: The Shires (Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire) and Essex Start date: September / October 2015 Starting salary: £22,500 Other benefits: free travel on Arriva UK Bus services. Learn to drive a bus. About Arriva UK Bus Arriva UK Bus has a

  • HP Intern Programme – IT

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: Competitive + benefits
    What do you think about when you hear the name HP? Is it printers? Laptops? Maybe it’s Beats Audio™? Most people do. It’s understandable – these are our products people see every day. But what about the other sides to HP?

  • IT/Legal/Financial Recruitment Consultant

    Shortlist Location: London, Nationwide
    Salary: £18 to 24k negotiable + benefits + OTE
    RECRUITMENT!! What can it provide you with? • A Long Term career, with successful prospects • A competitive basic salary • £18-£26k BASIC!!! +OTE £40-£60k • Achievable commission structures • Genuinely Lucrative Opportunity • Target Smashing rewards – holidays, cars, money

  • Graduate Sales Executive - Digital Media - £35k OTE

    Shortlist Location: Central
    Salary: £20000 to £25000 per annum negotiable + OTE + Bonus
    Are you a graduate looking to start your career in a fast-paced environment with rapid career progression?We are offering you the opportunity to work in one of the most innovative Digital marketing and international SEO companies in the UK. This is

  • Raytheon - Finance Graduate Leadership Development Programme

    Shortlist Location: The East, Scotland
    Salary: £24,000 + benefits
    Summary of Role: Graduates will complete rotations across different areas of Finance to ensure a rounded overview of the function. There will also be the opportunity to complete the Chartered Institute for Management Accountants (CIMA) qualification. The programme will involve rotations

  • Technical Delivery Graduate (Including Electronic Engineers)

    Shortlist Location: Nationwide
    Salary: competitive
    Role Profile The Applied Intelligence branch of BAE Systems delivers solutions which help to protect and enhance the connected world. Our solutions combine large scale data exploitation, ‘intelligence-grade’ security and complex services and solutions integration. We operate globally, with over 2,800

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