Before you apply for graduate roles, you’ll want to do two things. First, you’ll need an idea of the kind of graduate role and workplace that’s right for you. Second, you’ll need to find roles that meet your criteria.
Read our tips to help you assess what kind of graduate jobs to apply for.
Choosing the kind of job you want
If you’re not sure what you want to do after your degree, you’re not alone. But it’s worth noting that 70% of graduate jobs in the UK are open to any degree discipline, so loads of opportunities will remain open to you, whatever you studied.
There are a few places you can start to figure out what role will be best for you.
Your careers service
The first place to go for help is your university’s career service. They will be able to help you figure out what kind of role you want to apply for. They can also point you in the right direction to find the right roles.
Your careers service can help you through this process during your degree, but they can also usually support you for up to three years after your graduation.
The Prospects website also has advice and guidance, including:
- Advice on on what you can do with your degree
- Quizzes to help with the question: what job would suit me?
Prospects also has resources about applying to work in particular sectors, as well as a range of adverts for specific jobs and postgraduate study.
You can use LinkedIn to see what alumni from your course or place of study have gone on to do. This can provide you with ideas for your own career journey.
If you search for your university and click on the “Alumni” tab on the left hand side, all the graduates from your university with accounts will appear. You can then search by degree and find out what alumni from your course are doing now.
The further you scroll down the list, the more likely you are to find unusual and smaller businesses who are likely to receive fewer applications. It can feel daunting, but if you are feeling bold, you could connect with a few people whose jobs look interesting to you. Tell them you studied the same course and ask them about their line of work. The chances are they will be more than happy to talk to you.
Finding the right role
Once you know what kind of role you want, you can start looking for specific roles to apply for.
Look beyond obvious graduate employers
If you only apply to work at companies you’ve heard of, chances are it’s likely that everyone else has heard of them too. Only applying for these highly competitive roles will give most applicants a high rate of failure, even if they’ve put together a great application. This can be disheartening.
You might also find the most interesting work in smaller businesses. These will also offer different benefits: for example, great exposure, accountability and progression routes.
Unfortunately, there’s no single place where all graduate roles are listed. So you’ll need to use your research skills to find roles with smaller businesses. We’ve listed a few useful job boards below, but you shouldn’t stop there!
Here are some places you can look for opportunities.
Smaller businesses making single hires are more likely to use generalist jobs boards such as Indeed or advertise through LinkedIn.
- International students
If you are an international student, try Student Circus for a list of employers who offer visa sponsorship.
- STEM roles
If you are looking for a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) role then Gradcracker is an excellent resource.
- Industry-specific roles
There are also a range of industry-specific jobs boards that might have roles suited to your skills and interests, including: