Graduate schemes and graduate training
Graduate schemes and graduate training programmes are offered by many large employers. They typically last a year or longer; some extend to 18 months, while others last for two or three 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 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 and in sector-focused careers publications like TARGETjobs Finance and TARGETjobs Engineering. 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 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. The process of 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 the 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. Ideally, 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.
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 and financial services and insurance graduate schemes and programmes
- CBRE ACA trainee chartered accountant scheme 20 January 2019
- Allianz engineering insurance graduate scheme 31 January 2019
- Liberty Global finance scheme 31 January 2019
- nucleargraduates (Nuclear Decommissioning Authority) 2019 commercial graduate scheme 7 February 2019
- Neon graduate catastrophe analyst 12 February 2019
- KPMG 2019 graduate programmes – information risk management 28 February 2019
- Smith and Williamson private client tax services graduate scheme 28 February 2019
- Deloitte business and financial advisory graduate programme 15 March 2019
Banking and investment graduate schemes and programmes
- Deutsche Bank Birmingham graduate programme – global markets 3 February 2019
- Smith & Williamson investment management graduate scheme 28 February 2019
Civil engineering graduate schemes and programmes
- Atkins civil and structural engineering graduate scheme 2019 – Infrastructure 31 January 2019
- Mace project management (consultancy) graduate development scheme (highways) 17 February 2019
Construction and building services graduate schemes and programmes
- Kier Group 2019 graduate construction manager non-cog 31 January 2019
- Lendlease construction 2019 graduate programmes (construction and planning roles) 3 February 2019
- AECOM graduate opportunities in the UK and Ireland 2019 28 February 2019
Consulting graduate schemes and programmes
- FTI Consulting strategic communications graduate consultant role 31 January 2019
- Operis analyst graduate scheme 31 January 2019
Consumer goods and FMCG graduate schemes and programmes
- Mars procurement leadership experience scheme 21 January 2019
- Nestlé customer development graduate scheme 24 January 2019
Engineering graduate schemes and programmes
- RWE graduate engineer programme 18 January 2019
- Lockheed Martin manufacturing graduate programme 31 January 2019
- MBDA manufacturing engineer graduate scheme 31 January 2019
- Rolls-Royce engineering graduate development programme 1 February 2019
- William Jackson Food Group graduate engineering scheme 6 March 2019
- Balfour Beatty mechanical engineer graduate programme 12 April 2019
IT and technology graduate schemes and programmes
- Colt Technology Services cyber security scheme 28 January 2019
- Amazon software engineer graduate scheme 9 February 2019
- Virgin Media technology and innovation scheme 31 March 2019
- Sky graduate automated tester scheme 31 May 2019
Logistics, transport and supply chain graduate schemes and programmes
- Gist operations management graduate scheme 11 February 2019
Management and business graduate schemes and programmes
- McDonald's trainee manager positions open all year
- INEOS commercial graduate programme (Europe) 31 January 2019
Property graduate schemes and programmes
- The Berkeley Group graduate scheme 25 January 2019
- Barratt Developments ASPIRE graduate programme 30 March 2019
Public service, charity and social work graduate schemes and programmes
- Police Now national graduate leadership programme based in Essex 1 March 2019
Retail graduate schemes and programmes
- Amazon retail graduate programme 18 January 2019
- Farmfoods graduate scheme 31 January 2019
- Next trainee merchandiser graduate scheme 31 January
- Lidl buying graduate management programme 28 February
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. You can find out more about the UK's most popular graduate employers in a range of career sectors from our UK 300 pages.