When graduation looms, so does the big question of what the next step to take is. Do you walk straight into a job? Go wandering on a gap year? Or even plan to start your own business? Most students choose the former, and for that reason we want to share the difference between graduate schemes, & graduate jobs so it’s clear for ever and eva.

What is a graduate scheme

Graduate schemes are offered by most large employers and consist of a very structured training period within a company that can last for 1 to possibly 3 years depending on the specific organisation. During this time, you will learn and gain experience working in various sectors of the business allowing you the opportunity to see where you shine. Probably the best thing about grad schemes is they also involve a series of placements – allowing you to improve your skills in different areas. Employers are known to use graduate schemes for finding & recruiting future manager positions.

What is a graduate job

A graduate job on the other hand is the entry-level role that requires people with graduate level education. This usually means you begin from the word go in the position you apply for, and the training may not be as varied & structured to that offered on a grad scheme. You will probably have more control over your own development & progression.


Graduate schemes vs graduate jobs

Graduate schemes:

  • Allow graduates to experience many aspects of the role and organisation as a whole.
  • Intense training, development and support.
  • Access to various departments and issues faced by each function

Graduate jobs:

  • Training provided, but graduate is expected to be pretty knowledgeable & ready for chosen position.
  • ‘Learn on the job’ approach.
  • Faster progression in role and within the organisation

So there you have it! Both have their perks, the important thing is what works for you.

If you want to have experience in various areas of an organisation with more structure, then a grad scheme is the way to go. Instead if you’d prefer to jump straight into the job and get stuck-in and learn as you work a graduate job is what you are looking for. Check out which companies are currently offering graduate schemes or which companies are currently offering graduate jobs in the UK.