Being an engineering graduate may often feel like you’ve been thrown in the deep end and you’re not quite sure how to emerge with your first industry job. However, there are loads of graduate schemes available for you. Graduate schemes can offer a huge range of prospects, including, global opportunities, skills training and a chance to network with professionals. Whether you decide a graduate scheme is good for you or not, as a graduate you have a lot to offer and it’s important to know your worth when applying for jobs. Graduates have just gone through a rewarding 3-4 years of higher education and businesses want to hire you for a reason. You will have some highly sought-after skills, so if grad-schemes sound like they are for you, embrace this time and enjoy what they have to offer.
You’ve come so far
One thing most recent engineering graduates can agree on, is that gaining their degree was some of the most enjoyable years of their lives, where they had some of their best and worst days. It can be a very difficult time, but with the benefits engineering has to offer in a career, seems to be worth all of the work. You should be proud of everything you have achieved so far, with an engineering career ahead of you, there are so many more achievements to look forward to. Your degree is something that will back the skills you will have mentioned on your CV and your experience at university is a great thing to talk about in interviews, especially if you don’t have much work experience. Typically, companies offering graduate schemes will be aware of any industry and knowledge gaps you may potentially have. They should be understanding when it comes to your past work experience. What is important to do in graduate interviews is to make them aware of the passion you have for engineering and your chosen sector, this will be highly appreciated by the interviewer.
Often, companies that hire new graduates are aware of the lack of work experience. Graduate schemes are put in place to support you and help you learn. Most businesses are open to training new starters with the skills you will need to complete the role with competency and skill. You’ll find that companies offering graduate schemes are open to the training because you often get paid a little less than other employees, due to lack of experience and the time and money they are using to train you. The money may seem like a small disadvantage to begin with, but the training they are giving you will help you get your next venture and you’ll find that it will make it all worthwhile. Companies are seeing the huge benefits that hiring graduates has on the business and the teams within. Training schemes may allow you to feel more comfortable accepting a new job and keeps they try and keep you full of motivation to learn whilst you are at work. Take full advantage of these learning periods and really explore what they have to offer, you’ll enjoy the probation time in your job a lot more with an open mind. Explore all of the benefits your workplace may provide. Take a bit of initiative and if you feel like you would benefit from a programme they offer, just ask!
Provide a new perspective
Compared to anyone that has been working for several years, a new person, fresh out of university is bound to bring a new perspective to the team. Bringing fresh and new creatives into the work place opens up room for unique and important developments to be made in the industry. In engineering, it’s important to have new ideas to keep things evolving at a good speed. Businesses need all kinds of workers, from all stages of life, to lead a successful work environment. You should understand that as a graduate your ideas and opinions are valued just as much as anyone else’s. New ideas bring new successes to any business, don’t be afraid to share the ideas you have. With the endless supply of motivation graduates seem to have, motivation plus creativity, can lead to huge success.
You have less responsibility
This statement can always sound a little negative. However, the beginning of your career can be a very difficult and busy time. As an engineer, you will more than likely have a very busy schedule and coming up with good ideas may be crucial. But, you are still learning and depending on your job role, people shouldn’t expect everything you do to be flawless at the beginning so it’s important to stop striving for complete perfection at this stage in your career. Mistakes can happen, and they will only strengthen you as an engineer. It’s important to not give up and not to let failure blind you. You should enjoy the minimal stress aspect. It won’t be like this forever.
Benefits of your industry
It’s important to understand how valuable you are as a graduate because some people tend to link this time with an uneasy feeling. You have so much to offer and the achievements you have made so far are worth being proud of. It’s only the beginning. The engineering community has so much to offer and it can be hard to hold onto this when things may get tough. Remember why you wanted to be an engineer in the first place!
Engineering opens so many doors and as a graduate you can often wonder if you made the right career choice. However, engineers have a list of never-ending options. You could go into design or research elements or even push on with further education, engineers can do anything they believe to be possible, it will always be a very exciting industry and the opportunities are endless. Not to mention the shortage of qualified engineers. You can become a chartered professional and the job opportunities are just as plenty. As well as the jobs, the location opportunities are not restricted, engineers are needed all the time and everywhere. Every day will be different and the work you do, no matter what sector you chose will be both challenging and rewarding. You may even decide to explore multiple sectors to find the one for you, you have that opportunity! A huge bonus to an engineering career is the financial aspect– if that’s what you’re after in a job, engineering staff are often very well paid.
University is a very popular choice with young people, however it’s not the only choice anymore. When applying for a graduate scheme, you may be in competition with some very strong applicants. It’s a field with so much passion built around it and the community are very open to inviting people in. You need to understand the benefits you will have on this community one day, if not already. You are needed by employers as well as highly desired. They want graduates to come in and show them what you’ve got. Fight for your position and show them why you decided to be an engineer.