Fun, prospects or money: what are you looking for?
Not everyone wants money or status. Some graduate roles offer different types of reward such as job fulfilment, satisfaction and enjoyment.
Graduate career ideas: big fun jobs
TESOL (teaching English to speakers of other languages) offers a world of opportunities. With an accredited qualification, you can teach English anywhere in the world and there is usually no requirement to speak the local language. Many TESOL teachers combine their work with travelling and the flexibility of the role means that it is easy to fit the work around your lifestyle.
Product developers or innovators work mainly in the retail industry, designing and realising new products. Communication skills are vital as developers must listen to the requirements of the customer and feed this into the production process. The role involves elements of marketing, research and design and encourages innovation and creativity.
Media production is a vast area including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines and the internet. There are a huge number of roles from script writing to set and prop design, with something applicable to every discipline within the arts. The industry is notoriously competitive so picking up any experience you can is vital.
You might also like to consider museum curation, environmental conservation, charity fundraising, gallery management or even party organising!
Some graduate job roles offer more opportunities for progression than others. For high-fliers there are plenty of options that will help you climb the ladder fast.
Graduate career ideas: jobs with big prospects
Management positions are available in pretty much every industry in the UK, from construction to logistics, leisure to retail. Many large graduate employers offer management training schemes to help you get your foot in the door and once you've picked up the core skills they can be applied in any area of business.
Surveying offers another broad career option with plenty of opportunity to progress. Surveyors operate across many areas of the property industry, from commercial property sales to residential valuations. Graduates without a property-related degree accredited by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) have to take a postgraduate conversion course. Salaries of £30,000 after qualification are the norm.
Careers in the armed forces, local government and retail also provide opportunities for fast career progression.
There are loads of graduate roles out there that will turn your degree into big money. Unsurprisingly, most of these are in the financial sector.
Graduate career ideas: jobs that offer big money
Investment banking is all about the raising, investing and managing of money. Graduates seeking work in this profession need to be creative and ambitious with an entrepreneurial flair and business nous. It's a competitive industry so you have to sell your analytical and quantitative skills. The average starting salary for graduate jobs with investment banks or fund managers is now around £38,000, with perks and bonuses on top.
Law is another option, but requires a bit more work and commitment. Without an undergraduate law degree you'll need to take a one-year conversion course and then a vocational course: the legal practice course (LPC) to become a solicitor. After this comes the training contract which, at a City firm, pays in the region of £37,000 before you even qualify! Competition is fierce so real effort must be made in applications.
Management consulting involves analysing organisations and recommending changes to improve productivity, profitability and general performance. Communication and teamworking skills are highly desirable to consultancies, as is attention to detail – all things you should have picked up during your degree. Consultancy is a varied, interesting career and well paid with it. Starting salaries are in the region of £28,500.
Other options you may like to consider include careers in the IT business, accountancy, actuarial work and other financial services.