Graduate Advice

Leaving university is both an exciting and nerve wracking time, after three years of studying it’s finally time to enter the real world and put that degree you’ve gained to good use. We’ve compiled some top tips to help you get your life after university off to a good start.

Your CV

Writing your CV straight out of University may seem like a daunting task but a great CV can make the difference between whether you get that interview or not.

Your graduate CV should contain the following;

  • Personal statement

Ensure this is tailored to each individual application as the reader will most likely be able to tell it is a generic statement.

  • Education

Within this section your degree will be the main focus as it will be the area in which you will have gained the most relevant experience within your chosen field.

It’s not necessary to list all the modules you took whilst at University but if you feel they are relevant to the job role then be sure to include it.

  • Previous employment

Although you may feel that your previous employment may not be relevant to your application but don’t be dismayed, as a recent graduate potential employers will know that you will have limited industry experience.

Don’t forget to include any internships, work experience or voluntary work you may have undertaken, these are a great way of showing any relevant skills you have developed.

  • Hobbies and interests

This isn’t a vital section to include but it’s nice to let a little bit of your personality shine through to your potential employers.

You can read our full article on Graduate CV’s here.


Internships are a great way to gain real industry experience after leaving University. As well as helping to get your foot in the door of the industry, internships also benefit your personal development and enables you to improve on key skills such as time management and team work. You may also find that internships can potentially lead to job offers.

You can read our full guide to Internships here.

Graduate Schemes

Graduate schemes are notoriously popular amongst University leavers, with the chances of gaining a place within a large organisation statistically being 1-in-10. Most graduate schemes take applications from January – September for the following September with an average starting salary of £25,000.

The career opportunities for those accepted onto graduate schemes can be huge, as all of your training will be done on the job your chances of progression within the company are vastly increased.


Networking is a great way to engage with other professionals within your industry and will help you grow both personally and professionally. By regularly attending networking events you will find that your personal profile within your industry will start to increase.  Networking not only allows you to find out the latest industry news and developments and engage with other professionals but you may also find that it presents potential work opportunities.

You may come across individuals or business that are hiring or looking to collaborate and you can use the opportunity to talk about your experience and the skills you have gained whilst at University. Even if this isn’t the case you can utilise the time with experienced people within your industry and get advice on how you can get your career off to the best start.

You can read our full article on the benefits of networking here.

Recruitment agencies/ Job boards

Whether online or in the local paper, job boards and local advertisements are a tried and tested way of finding jobs.

ESA Group have a variety of Graduate roles available throughout the West and East Midlands region. Our dedicated team of consultants deal are specialists within their fields and can help you find your ideal job with Marketing, Technology, HR and Procurement and Supply Chain. To find out more click here.