Work Experience – a student’s perspective

You’ve probably heard about the benefits of gaining work experience alongside your studies. It can help with career decision making, allows you to develop transferable skills like communication and teamwork and builds your confidence and resilience. In this guest blog we hear from recent graduate Natasha Barnes about her work experience with McGinley Education. Read More

Teacher Training – applications now open

Postgraduate Initial Teacher Training (England & Wales) opened for applications on 9th October and we’ve already seen a lot of personal statements at our Careers Express drop-in. If you’re thinking of applying to teacher training to start in 2019 this blog’s for you! Read More

Using your network to launch your career

Network to launch career

You may have heard of the “hidden jobs market”, well this definitely forms part of it. Small companies, that is to say businesses with less than 50 employees, make up a huge percentage of the jobs market. What you might not know is that their jobs don’t always appear on your indeed job search. These companies often use their networks to find the right staff. And, you should do the same thing to find the right job!

Whilst the big companies and graduate schemes advertise their graduate opportunities widely, opportunities in small businesses can be harder to find online but they are out there in BIG numbers. And there are perks to working for a smaller organisation.

You are likely to be given a greater degree of responsibility and opportunities to build on decision-making and leadership skills. Plus, the work is usually more varied than in larger organisations so graduates often have a better chance to explore different activities and find out what interests them.

So how can you harness your personal network to help your job hunt? Here’s our top three tips…

  1. Consider who you know. This may sound like an overly simple piece of advice, but the best place to start is to audit your connections. Think about who you know, what they do and how they could help. Does your Dad’s friend still work for that marketing organisation? Does your best friend’s uncle still work in the media industry? I promise, you’ll be surprised how many links you already have on your contacts list.
  2. Ask for introductions. Your network doesn’t just consist of who you know, it is also made up of who they know. Your parents might not work in the right area but likelihood is they know someone who does. Or, they know someone who knows someone. Have you heard that everyone on the planet can be linked by 7 degrees of separation? Well start asking for introductions and see how far it gets you!
  3. Remember your online community. Those lost hours spent on instagram and facebook aren’t wasted when it comes to your job search. Do you follow someone who has your “dream job”? Message them! Your existing online network is a powerful tool in your job hunt. Plus, it’s a great place to start in trying to build new connections. Apps like LinkedIn and Shapr are incredibly useful to meet new people who can help you take the next step.

If you want any more advice on your job hunt, book in for a 1-1 appointment with one of our careers advisers by emailing

6 ways to make a good first impression in your new job

Starting a new job is a big deal. Starting your very first new graduate job can feel like a REALLY big deal. Here are our 6 top tips to make a good first impression in your new job.

1.) Be on time

Do I sound like a broken record? That might be so, but arriving late is the #1 absolute no-go. Check your route, test drive it, do a dummy run on the bus, whatever you need to to make sure you’re there with five minutes to spare.

2.) Be yourself

Whilst it is important to make a good first impression, you also need to give a true impression of who you are and what you are about. After all, that is why they offered you the job in the first place!

3.) Be attentive

Take time to observe your new environment. Make sure you’re always carrying a note pad and pen and be attentive to everything. From the IT system to how your new colleagues’ take their brew.

4.) Be adaptable

Adaptability and flexibility are some of the most sought after traits by employers. Take early opportunities to demonstrate that you are able to handle change effectively and are ready for this new role.

5.) Be patient

Don’t rush in with guns blazing ready to change the world. In most cases, the company and the team you are joining have existed well before you arrived. Take time to understand their habits, strengths and routine. There will be plenty of time to make an impact as you develop in your role.

6.) Be friendly

Make a round of brews, remember your new colleague’s name, ask questions and actively listen to their response. These early days often set the tone for your long-term working relationships and kind gestures go a long way.

Class of 2018 we’re here for you!

If you’re graduating this summer remember you can access all of our services, free of charge, for up to three more years. Here’s our quick guide to our services and how we can help now you’ve finished university. Read More