Careers advice and planning

The benefits of graduate training programmes

22 Jun 2023, 13:19

Most large companies employing graduates have graduate training programmes in place. These can be a valuable bridge between university and working life.

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Most large companies employing graduates have graduate training programmes in place. These companies tend to invest thousands in recruiting graduates who have demonstrated impressive academic ability but who have little or no experience in the world of work. A graduate training programme is a way of bridging the gap. Graduate training programmes ease candidates into the world of work and give them the skills necessary to become part of the larger team. They tend to last either one or two years. Some will offer students the opportunity to experience several different areas of business before choosing a final career path within the company. Employers’ websites and/or recruitment brochures give details of these.

Graduate schemes in all sectors

Graduate training programmes have long been popular with banks, insurance companies and financial institutions but they have become increasingly more common with employers across all sectors, particularly the IT and technical spheres. Advantages include:

  • A good level of support when starting your career
  • Training and development opportunities
  • A mentor to talk through any problems
  • The opportunity to study for a professional qualification (normally funded by your employer)
  • The chance to rotate through different departments and gain experience of different functions.

Start your search early as programmes can attract thousands of graduates annually. Having previous experience – such as work experience or an internship – can give your application the edge. If you’re not successful there are other options: many employers recruit graduates straight into positions and train them on the job. Smaller companies tend to attract fewer applications so their entry requirements aren’t as stringent but this does not mean the work is any less prestigious. The opportunities exist if you’re willing – so get out there and start researching now.


We spoke with Kerri Murphy about her experience in the Board Bia International Global Graduate programme. In this conversation, we cover what her job involves, the skills needed to be successful, what she loves about her job, and the advice she would give to current students.

gradireland editorial advice

This describes editorially independent and impartial content, which has been written and edited by the gradireland content team. Any external contributors featuring in the article are in line with our non-advertorial policy, by which we mean that we do not promote one organisation over another.

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