Should You Hire Grads During a Downturn?

Historically, graduate recruitment has taken a dip when economic times have been tough. On one hand, this is entirely understandable – letting loyal employees go as you hire younger (and cheaper) models doesn’t do much for morale. On the other hand, there are a whole host of arguments to say that grad hiring during the…

Loneliness Can Be an Issue for New Grads

Starting at a new company can be a lonely time, but starting for your very first employer can be even lonelier. Many fresh grads are not used to the norms of office behaviour, and while in a bigger company they might have a group of fellow grads to share their growing pains, in the mid-sized…

But Won’t Ambitious Grads Rock the Boat?

Ambition isn’t the only quality that a new grad brings with them on their first day, but that desire is often what will get them through those initial few testing months. They are starting out on a successful career, with no intention of failing. Such an attitude can be a little intense for those around…

Not All Grads Know What They Want to Do

Too many grads worry about their lack of direction when they are starting out on their careers. They work with us in hospitality roles during their studies, but when the moment comes to make that “big” decision, many adopt the look of a rabbit in the headlights. After an academic career of certainty and achievement,…

Hospitality is a Breeding Ground for Great Grads

Many students find that their introduction to working life is way before their graduation day. For many of the students who work for Brightsparks, the pay they receive for work in our event and hospitality side is a vital source of the funds they require to be able to get through university; to pay to…

One Question to Ask Every Grad at Interview

Whenever someone comes into an interview, it is vital to gain an understanding of their personal values. When someone has a track record of previous employment, it is not so hard to perceive their values from their past behaviour. However, when a grad comes in who knows little else but work placements and holiday jobs,…

3 Tips for any Graduate’s First Interview

The nerves are jangling, but the door to their future is now slightly ajar. They have the first interview at the company of their dreams, but will the door swing invitingly open or slam in their faces? A lot will depend on how the grad handles themselves during the interview. When you have a stellar…

Not All Grads Want to Be Entrepreneurs

There is so much hype about the explosion of entrepreneurial success and the expansion of the “gig economy” that you might be fooled into thinking that the modern-day grad has one eye on a solo career from the day that they graduate. They crave the freedom that they had at university, they want to be…

Writing Is a Unique Weapon in Every Grad’s Arsenal

The art of written persuasion is sadly lacking in the modern business world. Written communication is as succinct as possible. One-word emails are not unusual, and the abbreviations of text messaging and Twitter are acceptable for many millennial-oriented companies. You’ve got to be down with the kids, right?!? It is true that the Millennial generation…

Don’t Save on Pay for Graduate Talent

“Stack them high and pay them peanuts” is not an attitude to take when you are looking to hire graduate talent. A key part of any HR department’s work is to deliver value to the business by organically developing every employee. As they deliver more value, their remuneration and benefits equally start to ramp up….

Sociable grads are good for business

They are used to getting on well with hundreds of near strangers. They are practiced in the art of empathy and are surprisingly good listeners. Humour is never far from their lips, and with their infectious enthusiasm, they are often a pleasure to be around. When a new wave of graduates joins a business, it…

Is Mental Health a Risk for Recent Grads?

This subject is not one that is touched on very often, but it is something that sometimes crosses my mind. Graduates are often seen as indestructible machines, with their energies simply redirected from party hard to work hard. Many of them will have completed some work experience while at university, so how hard can their…

Do Grads Care About Perks, Pay or Promotion?

In the soul searching for the perfect culture, some companies seem to have lost sight of what really matters to graduates and young professional starting out on their career: they need to pay the rent, put food on the table and go out on the weekend. They also must have some sort of hope for…

How to Get on with People You Have Never Met

When you walk in the door, a shiver of fear runs down your spine. You don’t know anyone. We’ve all been there. Whether it is your first day in a new job, a sales meeting at a new client or a dinner party with a load of strangers, we are all familiar with that brief…

Millennials are not a panacea for all agencies’ problems

Amid all the Christmas ad hoo-ha one story really stood out for me. And it didn’t have anything to do with a bouncing dog. It was around the John Lewis spoof and W Communications’ decision to hire the clever lad behind it. Hiring an 18-year old with no agency experience is a bold move. And I look…

Treat Grads Mean & Keep Them Keen

I am not suggesting that you chain your Grads to the coffee machine, but taking on relatively inexperienced new starters does require certain boundaries to be set. It is great to welcome them with open arms and an effusive smile on their first day, but unless you set them to work in a rigid and…

Are Mentors Cheerleaders or Taskmasters?

The job of a mentor is to enable change in their charges by getting them to think and act in a more effective way. They help them to see the light and give them the tools and the belief to move towards it. Due to the very fact that graduates have little experience in their…

Grads need to be solid, not spectacular

The undergraduate existence is an interesting one – they spend their days striving for academic excellence (as well as enjoying the social side of university life!), while their weekends and holidays are often spent in a somewhat mundane introduction to working life, in jobs such as shelf-stacking and data-entry. Yes, they can be more interesting…

Student jobs can provide so much more than just some extra cash

Getting a Student Job – Why It Matters (Guest blog by Emma Mahdavi, staff member at Brightsparks) Paying your way through university and building your CV at the same time, without it encroaching on your studies, can be challenging. Here’s why bagging yourself a student job is can help you. The cost of University and all…

What are graduates looking for in a role?

Graduate Roles – Will They Stay On-board? Graduate recruitment is one of the most important parts of any business. From foodie start-ups to major financial institutions, everyone needs a pipeline of fresh talent. It is easier, cheaper, and much more rewarding to promote from inside than out, and having an established team that you know and…

Happy Accident!

Graduate Recruitment Jobs – Don’t Listen to the Bad Reviews Are you considering applying for graduate recruitment jobs? Here’s my story – and here’s why you should go for it. As a young guy, I graduated from Loughborough University with a 2:1 in French and Politics having always wanted to be a professional sportsman; I had…

Standing out from a distance – how to nail a phone interview

Graduate Work Tips – Phone Interviews Done Right The graduate work environment and the world of job applications is an ever-changing landscape. Whereas 10 or 20 years ago face-to-face interviews were the norm, in today’s increasingly digitised and connected world it is increasingly common to companies to use webcam or telephone-based interviews, saving them time…