The 4 Stages of a Graduate Recruitment Process

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The graduate recruitment process can be a brilliant way of

helping a business find the next generation of superstars to inject their organisation with new ideas, innovation and vision.

Regardless of sector, a common thread uniting the best performing companies is a realisation that teams are their most valuable asset. If you want your business to stand out and be a market leader, then it is essential to have a robust Graduate Recruitment Process in place to attract the most exciting new talent available to help you.

By following a rigorous graduate program application process, clients can help source the next generation of top professionals to innovate their business. Here, we’ll look at each stage of the graduate recruitment process journey, how to get your graduate program application process right and what companies need to do to make their graduate program application process run as effectively as possible.


What is graduate recruitment

Using an effective graduate recruitment process can help your organisation in a myriad different ways:

  • Source innovative new talent
  • Instill long-term loyalty within your workforce
  • Access new ideas and perspectives
  • Benefit from enhanced productivity

According to ISE, graduates contribute approximately £1 billion of added value to the UK economy annually while the estimated cost to hire in 2019 was £4,739.

On average an employer retains 57% of its intake after five years. The average length of stay in a first job is just under 4.5 years showing that hiring talent at this stage in their careers can have real benefits in terms of staff retention.


Future outlook for job opportunities after Covid-19

At this point, it’s still difficult to predict which companies will be damaged in the long-term as some industries have seen plenty of activity as restrictions have eased. Some new permanent changes could be a reduction in the amount of business travel as well as increased automation in certain roles

New Types of Jobs Emerge From Covid-19

The pandemic accelerated existing trends in remote work, ecommerce, and automation. According to McKinsey, up to 25 percent more workers than previously estimated potentially needed to switch occupations due to Covid-19, underlining the extent of the disruption to the working world.


Before beginning to search for great new talent, businesses should sit down and consider their graduate recruitment plan. This could involve:

  • Reviewing and assessing your current staffing resources, skill sets and see where there might be any knowledge gaps or extra team members required.
  • Evaluate budgets to see what you can afford and plan the type of staff you hope to take on.
  • Consider employing skilled graduates on a contract or temporary basis.
  • You also have the option of working with graduate recruitment services as support.


Plan ahead. You need to invest some time into evaluating your business needs to ensure you not only find but retain the right talent for you and your organisation.


The graduate program application process usually begins with an advert on a website featuring a detailed job specification and a link to apply. From here, a company or recruiter will collect submissions from potential candidates via the completion of applications or CVs.

In these applications, graduates need to demonstrate:

  • Suitability and enthusiasm
  • Their experience and why a role is a good fit for them
  • In some scenarios or for certain roles, applicants will need to complete a test as part of this process, again aimed at showing their skills and suitability for the post.


Psychometric tests can be a great way of going beyond grades on a CV. They are not aimed at finding the brightest candidate but instead assess different character traits and competencies.

Graduate Recruitment Process Experienced Hires Interviews

An important stage of the graduate recruitment process is interviewing applicants. Candidates will be chosen based on their written submissions and how well they have demonstrated their expertise on paper. The interview process will then allow clients to ask questions raised by the applications and find out more about their experience and skills. If there are any specific questions, then this is a good time to ask them. At the same time, this interview process also gives the applicants the chance to raise any questions they might have too.

For some positions, there may well be more than one interview. For example, sometimes, there will be a telephone or video call, followed by a face-to-face meeting.


Look for a willingness to learn in any candidate. If they have demonstrated their commitment to activities or clubs outside of their studies, then this can be a great indicator that they will be wanting to do what it takes to adapt to the needs of your business


This is the point in the process where a company or graduate recruitment services comes together to decide on the successful applicant.

They will review the applications and assess performance against the role requirements. If you’ve been successful, then expect to be notified by phone with a follow up email to confirm the job and make this official. The final stage in this graduate recruitment process UK is for a candidate to sign and return an employment contract.


Selecting the right candidate is the final stage in the graduate recruitment process so it’s critical you get this right. Make sure this decision comes from different stakeholders within a business and that the skills and experience demonstrated match what you’re looking for.

Conclusion | Why Graduate Recruitment Services are Important

If your organisation is looking to source the next generation of top talent, then hiring graduates is a must. This way you can benefit from professionals full of energy and ideas at the start of their careers. Our teams are experienced in the graduate recruitment process UK and can help you find the best new talent to help you design and implement new processes. By sourcing additional great graduate talent, you can boost output and operational efficiencies and stay ahead of your competitors.

Get in touch to find out more about how our graduate recruitment experts can help you find the best talent for your business.


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