With demand for graduates incredibly high, the competition for top talent can be fierce. However, more and more people are graduating and thus joining the talent pool trying to secure positions amongst the best firms.

A study conducted by Bright Network revealed that over 90% of graduates think it’s important to gain work experience whilst at university and 70% believe it is important to secure a graduate job when they finish.

The research also highlighted the need for more to be done to educate students about the importance of gaining work experience. Despite the importance of internships helping to secure a position after university 35% of undergraduates are not applying for them.

Benefits of work experience

Work experience is a great way to sample all career options out there, it is a way of exploring different jobs without actually committing to anything or anyone for a sustained period of time. Often jobs will be portrayed a certain way in the classroom, such as learning about the ins and outs of business or accounting, but doing work experience is the best way to get a real sense of the particular industry.

Employers are looking for motivated and passionate employees and that can be shown by your willingness to do work experience. The right attitude goes a long way and once you dip you toe into the water you can be fully certain that it is the right avenue that you would like to pursue.

Graduates approach

The study also revealed that work experience, along with family and friends, have the biggest influence on a graduates’ preference regarding their employer or the sector they want to work in.

Ideally, graduates are looking for professional training and development, and a clear path for advancement in their role, which can very rarely be known until they experience life within the company.

If you’re a graduate looking to kick-start your career, have a chat with Discovery Graduates and see how they can help get you started