Why no one needs to get a grad job
They’re not necessary
People stress about joining a grad scheme straight out of uni, but there’s no rush.
Google “graduate jobs in [lets say] business and marketing” and you’ll get hundreds of results showing various schemes, programmes and entry level jobs.
So where do you start?
Job-sites offer you the best grad-job searching abilities including tests geared towards finding you your ‘ideal job’, and even the chance to get ‘similar’ jobs emailed to you on a daily basis. If you eventually manage to navigate your way through the abundance of vacanccies you’ll start to see the details of salaries, benefits and perks.
Amazing! I’ll just submit my CV and hope for an interview!
It surely can’t be that easy, can it?
Of course it’s bloody not! There’s psychometric tests, situational judgement tests, personality tests, numeracy and literacy tests all to decode who you are as a person before your CV is even considered.
Just plain unnecessary.
You’ve not just completed 17 years of full-time education to sit through hours of computer exams after uni! Especially not for a job at an obscure company in a town you’ve barely even heard of.
Around 400,000 students graduated from higher education last year, with that number expected to increase in 2016, meaning full time, paid work is in high demand with less success stories.
Of course grad schemes can lead to very good jobs – just once you’ve fetched coffee for the office (yet still not been invited out for the office party).
But the competitiveness of even these schemes is ridiculous. Employers can receive hundreds of applications per position, making a 2:1 degree the needed qualification.
So do you stay in education? Pursue a masters in your field and hope to God that you end up more employable by the end of it all, despite the towering debt that you’ve put yourself through?
That is a popular alternative it seems, with more and more people attempting to continue on their education. Out of those that graduated in 2011-12, data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (Hesa) shows 86.6% of Masters Postgraduates were working in professional positions six months after graduating, compared with 64% of degree graduates.
Pretty sound statistics, wouldn’t you say? But what do I do if not a grad job or scheme ?
If you had a part time job during uni, there’s no harm in continuing that to pay off your monumental overdraft, potentially progressing to manager or supervisor for your dedication to that shit bar job you hate so much (the hours can’t really be that bad compared to a 9-5, Monday to Friday).
There’s also the option of pursuing a job yourself. Avoiding the grad job tailored websites that “guarantee” you immediate starts and £20k+ pay straight away, you can submit your CV to companies you could actually see yourself working for.
Obviously knowing people in your chosen industry helps, but it doesn’t hurt to ask lecturers if they know of anyone taking on, or potentially applying to, your or another university for a research position.
After your degree the world is your oyster. You don’t have to stick to the stereotypical grad job system and make your way through the copious amounts of tests and stress that coincide with it.
Explore your options before you sit through that psychometric test and then the literary test and then the situational reasoning test only to receive an email to the tune of “We’re sorry but due to the high volume of entrants…blah blah blah”.
Don’t stick with the crowd, find your own way and explore your chosen field of work before thinking a Grad Scheme is the only way forward.