Female graduate in hijab walks during July 2019 graduation

Finding Graduate Jobs

Discover the best paths to finding a graduate scheme or graduate job, with help from our Graduate Recruitment Consultancy

Graduating this summer or within the last 5 years? We'll help you take your next step.

If you're trying to work out what to do when you've graduated, we can help you look at your options and explore career plans. If you don't know where to start, you might find our career planning section useful. You can also use our career guides to find information and resources for getting into different sectors.

Want to stay in the Portsmouth area after you graduate? Our graduate recruitment consultancy work with a wide range of local employers and can help match you with quality graduate jobs. You can also use our online jobs board, MyCareer, to look for roles across the UK and beyond. If you'd like to speak to an adviser 1-to-1, you can book a face-to-face, phone or video appointment with us.

Graduate schemes and jobs

There are 2 main paths to getting into graduate employment. These are:

  • Graduate schemes – usually offered by larger companies
  • Graduate jobs – usually offered by small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs)

There are advantages to both paths and our advisers can help you choose the right one for you. Remember, we offer support for graduates for up to 5 years after graduation.

Graduate schemes

Graduate schemes (or training programmes) are the most visible type of graduate job and are widely advertised. However, they can be competitive and only a minority of graduates find employment directly through one of these programmes.

The details of graduate schemes vary, but generally they are:

  • Opportunities with large organisations that take on many graduates each year
  • Usually aimed at final year students and new graduates
  • Part of an annual recruitment cycle – closing dates Autumn-Spring, interviews in Spring, new candidates post August-September
  • Based on a recruitment process that may include aptitude tests and assessment centres

Many graduate schemes are open to students from any discipline in fields such as Retail Management, Marketing, Accountancy and Human Resource Management. They provide a high level of structured training, and often include professional qualifications.

Find a graduate job

Graduate jobs at small to medium-sized enterprises (SME)

Graduate schemes aren't the only jobs available to you after graduation. You can also apply for graduate jobs with small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Small to medium-sized enterprises or businesses are companies where the number of employees or turnover falls below certain limits. The European Union defines companies with less than 50 employees as small, and those with less than 250 as medium-sized.

If you're part of the growing number of entrepreneurial undergraduates on campus you should look at careers that offer early responsibility and the chance to stand out and become involved in all aspects of a growing business. This might suit you better than being 1 person in 1,000 graduate recruits and economic growth comes from small high-growth businesses as much as from the larger businesses.

You should start looking out for these vacancies from March in your final year. We recommend using our in-house Graduate Recruitment Consultancy and the MyCareer jobs board. Vacancies are advertised when the need arises and employers will normally want someone in post within a couple of months.

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