Engaging with companies throughout your undergraduate studies

23 September 2021

We appreciate it can be daunting thinking about your career from the first week of term so our Employer Relations Team have worked with companies to provide you with a suite of employer activities to support your career journey.

You will find everything you need on my.wbs split into different employer activities to both prepare you and help you to engage with employers. Think outside of the traditional ‘box’ when preparing, take a look at those sectors you’ve not considered working in too, such as healthcare, not for profit, or energy as these sectors have a whole wealth of graduate opportunities you may not have previously been aware of.

How to prepare
Before you engage with employers you need to be prepared. Use the resources available to you to fully understand the different sectors and what is open to you by accessing country guides if you are looking to work in a different country post-study. Access the range of sector guides available on my.wbs to you, giving you insights into each sector, and make sure you attend careers workshops and one to ones available to you with the CareersPlus Undergraduate team. Revisit your UG careers resources pages on my.wbs each week and save the Placements & Internships Online Vacancies and the Graduate Online Vacancies Platform to your favourites.

How to engage
Once you are prepared, it is time to meet with alumni and employers to gain knowledge to help you when applying for your ideal job. Make sure your online profiles are professional and up to date and engage with alumni who are working in the companies you want to apply to via the WBS alumni directory and LinkedIn.  Make sure you are clear in your communications and that you open up dialogue, networking is not just about connecting on LinkedIn and liking the odd comment! Ask alumni about their career path, what is it like to work within that company/sector? What is their experience of the recruitment process? Ask for any other hints and tips they may be able to give you, ideally over a short call.

Attend our A Career in… series to gain a sector overview from an industry expert along with learning about available career paths within each sector from a panel of alumni speakers - look out on my.advantage and my.wbs for how to sign up to these sessions.

  • A Career in Finance (Festival) – Saturday 2 October
  • A Career in Technology (Festival) – Saturday 9 October
  • A Career in Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals – Monday 11 October 2021
  • A Career in FMCG – Tuesday 12 October 2021
  • A Career in Consulting (Festival) – Saturday 16 October 2021
  • A Career in Entrepreneurship – Monday 18 October 2021
  • A Career in Charity & Not for Profit – Tuesday 19 October 2021
  • A Career in Energy – Monday 25 October 2021
  • A Career in Law – Tuesday 26 October 2021

Our Employer Relations team has arranged some WBS Virtual Employer Engagement Days for this academic year. The first one will be taking place on Wednesday 6 October 2021 15:00 – 19:00 UK time, where you will have the chance to meet employers and learn more about the work experience and graduate programmes available to you. You will be able to view companies and sign up for this from the first week of term and it is open to all years. The second event will be taking place on Wednesday 23 February 2022  15:00 – 19:00 UK time, enabling you to meet employers who may still have a few opportunities available which will be more relevant to 3rd and final year students. Finally, our employer relations team also works closely with many of the Warwick Student Societies to host employer events and the Warwick Alumni Networks to host networking opportunities so make sure you make the most of every opportunity to engage with these events.

In addition to the events listed above, you also have access to lots of employer activities hosted by the Central Careers and Skills team including employer presentations and careers fairs. So, now you are aware of all the opportunities for you to prepare and engage with employers throughout this year, we thought you may value some advice on what employers are actually looking for when hiring new talent…

To help you to stand out from the crowd, be specific in your application and interview answers. Ensure everything you talk about links back to the specific role and part of the company you are applying to. Employers are always looking for any experiences, work or voluntary, that you can relate to the role you are applying for. A common question from employers is how did you fill your time during COVID-19? They want to hear how proactive you have been in using your initiative during this challenging time. Common soft skills sought are an entrepreneurial mindset, adaptability, curiosity and willingness to learn, along with a real passion for the sector and role.

A few other tips...

Even though industry is beginning to open back up, most employers will be keeping their recruitment processes virtual. This has allowed them to reach a far wider pool of talent from diverse backgrounds but also means we are able to work with far more companies, now travel is not involved so you will be able to meet far more employers during your studies than colleagues in previous years.

Remote working trends really depend on the sector but most companies are aware of flexible working being a priority for graduates when deciding which companies to work for, along with a priority on sustainability and inclusion.

In the current climate, companies are receiving hundreds of applications for every role they post, and some will close applications as soon as they have enough rather than giving specific closing dates, so if you do see a role you like, apply immediately, don’t hang about and risk missing out!

We hope this is helpful in preparing you for this coming academic year and look forward to meeting some of you at the events and activities we’ll be hosting.

If you are a current WBS student and would like any further support in preparing to attend a careers event, then you can book in a 1-2-1 appointment with our team by clicking here. Good luck, happy networking and most of all have fun!