Catch the talent! Gradsouthwest’s guide to planning your graduate recruitment.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

We are often asked “when is it a good time to recruit graduates?”, and in all honesty the answer depends on what you, the employer, is looking for.

Here are a few scenarios for you to consider:

Scenario 1: An urgent vacancy has arisen, and you are looking for an immediate starter…

Then recruit immediately and see who is out there. Graduates are looking for jobs all year, and those moving into their second job after graduation can certainly move between roles at any time. We also see those who took some time out, did some volunteering or took on an internship entering the job market throughout the year.

Scenario 2: You are planning ahead and have plenty of time

This one is particularly true of those running grad schemes with a number of hires expected.

Many graduate schemes run annual recruitment rounds - often recruiting in the autumn before graduates finish the following summer. However, some employers wait until the spring, and some run open recruitment year-round. The choice as employer is totally yours as to the approach you take.

If you’re not running a scheme, but have been planning your recruitment in advance then you can either just test the market at any time, go for a summer push, or grasp both options by making your advert open for either immediate start or summer start – catching both those available for work immediately, and those still needing to finish their course.

Scenario 3: You want to tap into the next cohort of students as they finish

Every summer the newest bunch of students finish and become available for work. The class of 2018 become available for work from June / July 2018 once final exams are over. If you're going to catch them, you need to be planning in February. Use our handy timeline to help....

  1. March 2018 - your advert goes live
  2. April 2018 - applications come in (for students, it's a nice diversion from revision over the Easter vacation!)
  3. May 2018 - you short list, interview and make offers
  4. June / July - your shiny new graduate starts

Recruitment Guide

Check out our Recruitment Guide - with lots of customisable templates - to get started.

Post a Job

And when you are ready to recruit, don’t forget to Post a Job on