I have worked in the graduate recruitment industry since May 2000. Over the last 20 years I have had the chance to observe the recruitment process from three perspectives: as a campus recruiter working for a large IT Services company, as Business Operations Manager for the industry’s trade association, and as Director of Careers for a London university.
I started working in graduate induction in 2000, and then from 2004 spent four years running the graduate recruitment team at Logica UK Ltd (now part of CGI), a multinational IT services company where I worked for 17 years after joining as a graduate in 1991. I recruited and inducted more than 1,500 graduates, placement students and school leavers during this time, focusing on developing relationships with over 50 universities, building robust and efficient candidate attraction, selection, on-boarding and induction processes, and creating seamless links with our graduate development programme. I visited Higher Education Institutions all round the UK delivering skills workshops and running company presentations and other campus engagements.
In 2008 I became the Institute of Student Employers‘ first Business Operations Manager following two years on the Board of Directors. Formerly known as the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR), ISE is a membership-led trade association that creates links between employers, universities and suppliers, promoting research and best practice across the sector. I chaired industry sector focus groups, managed the AGR Standard training programme, and worked with the Chief Executive Carl Gilleard to deliver the Annual Conference at the Celtic Manor.
From 2011 I spent four years as Director of Careers at City University London. I grew the service from 11 to 34 people, delivering careers guidance, employer engagement activities, a Unitemps part time and temporary work franchise, and a suite of Student Development opportunities. My team worked with 17,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students across five academic Schools. In 2013 I took on responsibility for City’s Widening Participation Outreach activities, managing a team that works with more than 7,000 young people from underrepresented backgrounds at local schools and colleges every year as part of City’s OFFA Access Agreement.
These three roles have given me an unusual opportunity to view the graduate recruitment industry from different standpoints as I have worked as a graduate recruiter, for the industry’s professional body, and for a university. As a result I understand the recruitment process from the employer and the university perspective, and I am well placed to offer advice and support to both sides to help them work together more effectively to enable the transition of graduates into the workplace.