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*HELP* What to do until Sept 2017 Grad Schemes

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Why bother with a post grad? Are they even worth it? Have your say! 26-10-2016
    • Thread Starter


    Bit of background about me: 21, Just graduated from Lancaster University with a 2:1 in Management & Organisation (BA Hons). Now obviously I'm over the moon with my results, with Lancaster being a top 10 uni I feel I've given myself a real chance of finding a good job. Also I have had quite a bit of work experience for someone my age, holding down 5 part time/ full time jobs since I was 14. Covering Admin, Telesales, Production line operative, Football Referee (achieved highly in this) and also have worked in Wetherspoons Kitchen. But here is my problem...

    I am looking for a grad scheme in Management consultancy or a general management scheme in London/ Down south (I'm from Preston, Lancashire), such as those that national rail, united utilities, etc all offer. However I have missed this years applications for the grad schemes, and am left with grad jobs, mainly in the recruitment industry to apply for.

    Initially I held the view that recruitment would be good, gain some experience, apply for grad schemes whilst working and then go to interviews later on in the year/ in early for 2017 (hopefully). However I have now found after researching and through interviews with recruitment companies that they truly want recruitment to be my life, and although they advertise 8.30-18.30 hours, the reality is it'll be even longer than that. Now I understand the reality in grad schemes is that this will happen too, but I actually want to do a grad scheme, I don't really want to work in recruitment. Not only are the hours atrocious, thus affecting my chances of being able to take time to submit applications for 2017 grad schemes, it also seems like such a soulless industry and definitely isn't something I want to do.

    (Broken down. Recruitment = very long hours, no flexibility and i'm worried I won't be able to submit applications and attend interviews, etc for grad schemes if I took the job, and thus become stuck in recruitment)

    A 2nd option I've looked at is to work in warehouses, manual labour, etc. This is a job I should easily get having worked on a production line before and being a fit and healthy 21 year old lad. I also live in a working class town and there are so many warehouse jobs around, so it really shouldn't be a problem. The problem I've got with this is not the money, but the loss of knowledge and intelligence I have gained from being at Lancaster, constantly being around extremely clever individuals, etc. I'm worried to some extent that I will lose that professionalism after having worked in a low skilled job for over a year (from now till sept 2017). I'm also worried that when these companies view my application for their grad schemes, it will serve as a deterrent, with them wanting to recruit more 'professional' people than those who would lower themselves to manual labour. Obviously in my view I wouldn't mind it, sure it'd be a bit boring, but at the end of the day it's local, so I don't have to move (as I might have had to do in recruitment), but it also gives me the flexibility I desire. I need to just be able to book off, for example, next Thursday because I've got an interview in London, and I think that jobs such as this will allow me to do that.

    (Broken Down: Warehouse/ manual labour/ any low skilled job = flexibility I desire and NEED, normal working hours (8 hour shifts). Negatives - May lose knowledge/ professionalism and may be frowned upon by employers)

    If you've made it this far then thankyou, your time is much appreciated and I'm sorry for the essay.

    So what do you think I should do? Recruitment really isn't what I want to do, so worried of getting caught in it and not getting the grad scheme I so desperately want, and believe me I will not have the time or energy to apply and research after working in recruitment. But at the same time is working in a normal, low skilled job where I have the time and flexibility to go to interviews and do applications/ research going to actually hinder my chances of getting on a graduate scheme in such a professional industry as management consultancy (very corporate).

    Any advice you could give me would be massively appreciated, I'm sure there are a lot of us in a similar position!

    Thanks a load, Liam

    Apply to off cycle internships, or apply to smaller/ less well-known management consultancies which allow you to start the grad job later in the year, e.g. L.E.K. consulting. I know graduates who started there in March.

    If that fails take a gap year and go travelling (if you can afford to) or work abroad. This will only add to your CV in terms of language skills and well-roundedness.
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