Graduate schemes and graduate training
Graduate schemes and graduate training programmes are offered by many large employers. They typically last a year, but some extend to 18 months or even two years. It's the defined time frame and structure that normally distinguishes a graduate scheme or programme from the wider class of 'graduate job', which is the catch all term for entry-level roles that require people with graduate level education.
A single employer can run more than one type of training programme within their organisation. For example, investment banks typically run separate streams for their operations, sales and trading, investment banking and technology roles, among others.
Engineering employers can run a management programmes or finance schemes alongside their engineering training. Accountancy and professional services firms will specialise in training graduates in particular areas of work such as tax, audit, assurance or advisory.
Graduate employers promote their graduate jobs, schemes and training opportunities on targetjobs.co.uk, in sector-focused careers publications like TARGETjobs City & Finance and TARGETjobs Engineering, and in graduate career directories like the TARGETjobs GET Directory. These publications can be picked up free from most university careers services or departments, or you can download the latest editions on our graduate careers publications page.
Employers offering graduate schemes are very active on campus during the autumn and spring terms.
Employers offering training programmes are also very active on campus during the autumn and spring terms, taking part in graduate recruitment fairs and hosting employer presentations and events. (Graduate recruiters doing the ‘rounds’ of universities to promote their opportunities and meet with candidates has traditionally been called the ‘milkround’.)
Graduate schemes enable new recruits to settle quickly into a professional work environment, receive relevant skills development and get hands on experience, either working in a specific role within an established team, or through working on a number of assignments in different areas of the organisation over the duration of the programme. If an employer has a large graduate intake, it is more than likely that you will have opportunity to network and socialise with your peers.
The golden rule of graduate schemes: apply early, even if the employer has an 'open' or 'ongoing' recruitment process.
You may have opportunities to work overseas or at different locations in the UK, or you may be based in one place. If you would prefer not to travel and you like a regular home life make sure you are aware of how much mobility is expected when you consider careers and employers.
Training in career areas such as engineering, accountancy, human resources, law, construction, management and property is often accredited by a relevant professional association. This type of support will assist you in qualifying to practise professionally.
The majority of training schemes have application deadlines between November and December for programmes starting the following September/October. You need to do your employer research and be ready to apply early during the first term of your final year.
An increasing number of employers have ‘ongoing’ or ‘open’ recruitment processes meaning that, in principle, they take applications year round. Despite this seeming flexibility, you are still advised to apply early. While these recruiters don’t give a hard and fast deadline, they may make offers from the start of the application period and they may close their scheme once they have filled all their vacancies. Some employers do give a specific closing date, but also state that they will close their recruiting process as soon as they have filled their spaces. KPMG is an example of this.
For recruitment success, make sure you’re clued-up on the applications and interview methods used by employers (check out our employer hubs for employers with tips to get hired). Many large graduate employers use online application systems to sort prospective candidates for their schemes and training opportunities. If your application is successful you may then be invited to an assessment centre or interview. Be prepared for psychometric tests – they can crop up in online applications and at interviews and assessments.
Accountancy and financial management graduate schemes and programmes
- KPMG (27 in The Guardian UK 300) opportunities for graduates in audit, tax and consultancy 31 December
- Barclays operations opportunities for graduates 31 December (Barclays is 24 in The Guardian UK 300)
- National Audit Office graduate accountancy scheme 31 December (the National Audit Office is 151 in The Guardian UK 300)
- E.ON finance graduate programme 31 December (E.ON is 110 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Phillips 66 commercial graduate development programme 31 December (Phillips 66 is 244 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Towers Watson actuarial consulting training and development programme 31 December
Banking and investment graduate schemes and programmes
- Baillie Gifford & Co investment operations graduate programme 31 December
- Mercer graduate investment analyst graduate development programme 31 December (Mercer is 179 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Fidelity Worldwide Investment graduate programmes 31 December
- Royal Bank of Scotland Group RBS Ulster Bank programme 31 December (Royal Bank of Scotland Group is 115 in The Guardian UK 300)
Civil and structural engineering graduate schemes and programmes
- Bechtel graduate programmes 31 December (253 in The Guardian UK 300)
Construction graduate schemes and programmes
- Barratt Developments PLC graduate programme 1 January
Consumer products graduate schemes and programmes
- Arla Foods F15 graduate programme 1 January
Engineering graduate schemes and programmes
- Cisco UK graduate schemes 15 December (128 in The Guardian UK 300)
- BP engineering graduate programmes 16 December (BP is 13 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Jaguar Land Rover graduate manufacturing engineering programme (Jaguar Land Rover is 20 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Lloyd's Register marine graduate training scheme 31 December (Lloyd's Register is 189 in The Guardian UK 300)
- nucleargraduates 2014 electrical engineering graduate scheme 31 December (nucleargraduates is 133 in The Guardian UK 300)
- BOC engineering graduate scheme 2014 31 December
- Raytheon UK aeronautical engineering graduate leadership development programme 1 January 2014
- Ford Motor Company Limited graduate manufacturing engineering programme 2 January (Ford is 145 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Rolls-Royce plc engineering graduate development programme 3 January (Rolls-Royce is 11 in The Guardian UK 300; key areas of work are civil and defence aerospace, energy and marine.)
Financial services graduate schemes and programmes
- American Express 2014 graduate programme 15 December (161 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Hiscox graduate operations consultant scheme 27 December
- Lloyds Banking Group risk graduate programme 31 December (Lloyds Banking Group is 60 in The Guardian UK 300)
Healthcare graduate schemes and programmes
- NHS general management graduate development scheme 9 December (NHS Graduate Schemes is the top employer in The Guardian UK 300)
IT and telecoms graduate schemes and programmes
- United Biscuits 2014 graduate programme 11 December
- Bank of America Merrill Lynch technology programmes 12 December (Bank of America Merrill Lynch ranks 81 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Capital One graduate technology rotation programme 15 December
- LCH.Clearnet IT graduate programme 20 December
- PA Consulting Group technology practice programme graduate recruitment 31 December ( PA Consulting group is 152 in The Guardian UK 300)
- International Financial Data Services IT graduate training programme 31 December
Logistics and transport graduate schemes and programmes
- Toyota Motor Manufacturing (UK) Ltd logistics graduate scheme 31 December (Toyota is 126 in The Guardian UK 300)
- FirstGroup operations graduate management training scheme 31 December
- apetito UK supply and logistics graduate scheme 2 January
Management graduate training schemes and programmes
- Enterprise Rent-A-Car (ERAC) management training programme 30 December (297 in The Guardian UK 300)
Management consulting graduate schemes and programmes
- CHP Consulting graduate scheme (215 in The Guardian UK 300) 31 December
Media and publishing graduate schemes and programmes
Quantity surveying and building surveying graduate schemes and programmes
- Kier Group plc graduate quantity surveyor development programme 31 December
Retail graduate schemes and programmes
- Tesco commercial general merchandise graduate leadership programme 31 December (Tesco is 85 in The Guardian UK 300)
- Morrisons Supermarkets plc graduate schemes 31 December
This is just a selection of what you can apply for on targetjobs.co.uk just now. To find more, go to the graduate job search.
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