Graduate Schemes 2020

What is a graduate scheme?
Graduate schemes, or rotational graduate schemes, are employment contracts offered to recent University graduates, usually from large organisations. Typically the schemes last between 6 - 24 months, often involving graduates rotating between departments to develop an understanding of each business function.

  • What's the starting salary for a graduate scheme?

    The overall average salary for a UK graduate scheme was £23,714 over the last 12 months.

    Avg salary:

    £23,714

  • When do graduate schemes open?

    In the past 3 years the majority of graduate schemes opened during the final week of September.

    Mostly:

    September

  • When do graduate schemes close?

    In the past 3 years the majority of graduate schemes closed during the final week of January.

    Mostly:

    January

  • Do you need a 2.1 to get on a graduate scheme?

    In the majority of cases when graduates schemes are advertised on graduate-jobs.com employers specify that candidates have a 2.1 (or above) award for their degree.

  • Applying for graduate schemes? Give yourself the best chance

    Firstly, it is important to start early. Applications begin at the start of year three, with a view to starting in September of the following year. Make sure you don't miss your window.

    In the period between applications and commencement, you can expect a number of interviews, online tests, video interviews, assessment days, and tasks to complete. These will help narrow down the competition until only the lucky few are left - so make sure you do your best at every stage.

    Take a look at the tips below to make sure you're as successful as you can be:

    • Be smart with your applications.
      Companies screen their applications early on for predicted classifications, and rarely accept anything lower than a 2:1. If you have a 2:2 and the application criteria is a 2:1 don't waste your time applying in the hope that a company will make an exception. Do something more meaningful instead.
    • Do your research.
      Make sure you know the company, know the details of the position, and that you have been thorough when filling out the application. Expect them to be extensive. Take your time and do it correctly.
    • Sell yourself... show you're passionate about the role
      There are few places it is acceptable to brag about yourself, and job applications are one of them. Remember, nobody can be impressed by what they don't know. They are looking for the best - show them why that might be you.
    • Stand out from the crowd.
      Pair a good academic record with a list of achievements and activities that show you go beyond what is expected. Think about work placements and internships, work experience, academic achievements, roles in sports or student politics, and any other extracurricular activities that might make you shine. Define your Personal Brand.
    • Don't be afraid to try.
      Worried your course might not be applicable to the graduate scheme you are looking at? Take a shot - many schemes will take graduates from any degree as long as they have a high classification from a decent institution.
    • Be specific.
      When filling out endless application forms, the temptation is towards blanket answers, stock phrases, and clichés, which will never make you stand out. So be concise with your answers, and be specific.
    • Above all, be positive!
      The process may be tedious, but the payoff is worth the effort.

    However, if you are unable to secure one of the coveted positions, remember that most graduates go on to have amazing careers without being offered a place on a graduate scheme.


    There are plenty of opportunities out there!


    For more advice read our Guide to Getting a Graduate Job.

Ministry of Defence