TARGETJobs AGCAS Award WIN for Careers Service Engagement

TARGETJobs AGCAS Award Winner 2015The Careers Group, University of London is delighted that Phoenix Education Trust (PET) has won the TARGETjobs AGCAS award for excellence in careers and employability service engagement 2015.

Nominated by The Careers Group, University of London member college, Queen Mary Careers & Enterprise Centre, PET are a small London charity that work to support and promote democratic education. They received the award for their exceptional contribution in providing quality work experience placements for young people through Queen Mary University of London’s work experience programme, QProjects.


Emily Huns, Head of Careers and Enterprise at QMUL, said:

This award reflects the extraordinary commitment of the Phoenix Education Trust to our QProjects programme, which provides project-based early work experience to QMUL students. Not only has PET, a small London charity, hosted 40 students over three years, they have also looked after all of these students extremely well, ensuring they make maximum use of their project to improve their employability and can present this persuasively to future employers.

The panel identified PET’s outstanding effort especially given their size. The other shortlisted nominations all came from commercial businesses across a range of sectors:

  • Atass Sports (nominated by the University of Warwick)
  • Jesmond Engineering Ltd (nominated by the University of Hull)
  • Midland HR (nominated by Nottingham Trent University)
  • Standard Life (nominated by the University of Edinburgh)
  • Web Applications UK (nominated by the University of Salford)

Find out more about The Careers Group, University of London’s career development and employability services.

The Careers Group to Present at UKCISA Conference: What Makes a Global Student

Abi Sharma, Deputy Head of Queen Mary Careers & Enterprise, part of The Careers Group, University of London will be speaking about global employment and employability at the UKCISA/Warwick Integration Summit 2015: What Makes a Global Student on 6 May 2015.

The conference, which is being held at the University of Warwick, will be considering ways to encourage greater integration between international and UK students to enhance the student experience during study. It will also look at how universities can provide students with the necessary outlook, self-awareness, communication and intercultural skills required to succeed in a global workplace.

Abi’s interactive session will explore research from NUS UK and NUS Scotland on global employment and employability, looking at international and UK students. It will draw on Internationalgood practice from across the University of London colleges and showcase how careers services such as UCL, Kings College London, Royal Holloway and Queen Mary, University of London train students to be employees in a global workplace.
Delegates attending the session will gain an understanding of global employment and employability for both international and home students. The workshop will provide a broader understand of how we can help students recognise where they have gained an international outlook and intercultural skills from a year abroad or overseas internship, and how this can be marketed to potential international employers.


The session will also invite delegates to consider how we can equip students for an international job search and hear about some of the ways this is being done at the University of London.

Abi Sharma has over 6 years’ experience of one-to-one careers guidance and group facilitation for UK and international students across a wide range of career related topics.

The Summit organised by the University of Warwick, Warwick SU and UKCISA is an excellent event for students, researchers and practitioners interested in promoting greater integration between home and international students.


The Careers Group Comments On Luck’s Role In Careers

David Winter, Head of Consultancy at The Careers Group, University of London was lucky13recently interviewed by Ignites Europe about the role that luck plays in careers. He has written several articles on the subject and his unit provides coaching and training to help people understand what they can do to increase their chances of career success by adopting approaches that increase the probabilities of favourable events. Much of this is based on up-to-date theory and research about career success.

David has made sure that one of the distinguishing features of The Careers Group Consultancy is that it integrates the latest career thinking to provide a better service to its wide range of customers.

Working with both organisations and individuals The Careers Group Consultancy specialises in how to make organisations become successful by enabling people to be successful.

David says:

You often have consultancies who specialise at the organisational development end, looking at the strategic side of developing an organisation, and then you have other organisations who specialise at the training and the development/coaching of individuals. It’s a somewhat artificial distinction, because these two things are intimately related.

This different approach which looks at an organisation’s success in relation to its individuals means that the team can take the learning they gain from dealing with leadership and management issues and relate it back to career management issues and vice versa. A lot of the problems are the same. How do you get the information you need? How do you make decisions? How do you plan for a future when you don’t know what unexpected things might happen on the way?

The Consultancy unit started by focusing on career management for individuals, covering traditional areas such as how to find jobs or get jobs or make career transitions. But it has gradually extended its remit beyond that to provide training and coaching on how to perform well in an existing job so that it yields further opportunities like promotion or attracting attention through personal effectiveness so that more opportunities come your way.

In David’s view:

We take a holistic view of success. That’s why we deliver skills training, such as assertiveness, personal effectiveness and communication skills. These are abilities that help you to excel in your job and therefore contribute to your overall success in your career. We also provide coaching and training on leadership and management because, if you’re successful in your career you are likely to progress to more senior levels and take on more responsibility. Most training in this area tends to look at what skills you need to do the job of a manager but because of our background in career development we also consider how you successfully manage the transition from an operational identity to a management identity as a personal process.

One of David’s main interests is learning – how people learn, how people learn effectively and why they sometimes fail to learn. When he or one of his team run training — whatever the topic — their primary aim is to enable people to become more effective learners. They know that most of the real learning will happen outside of the training room. They equip people with the tools, habits and attitudes that enable them to engage in real world learning more effectively. They also prepare them to take advantage of the unexpected opportunities that luck may bring.

To find out more about The Careers Group Consultancy visit

The Careers Group’s Member College Presented with AGR Award for ‘Best Preparation for Work Initiative’

Royal Holloway Careers & Employability, part of The Careers Group University of London has won the Association of Graduate Recruiters national awards in the category of Best Preparation for Work: Single Initiative 2015.

AGRAward2015The award recognises the work of a single initiative within a university careers service in preparing students effectively for the world of work.

Royal Holloway Careers & Employability’s innovative initiative was especially commended for its gamification methodology, and its 5 month careers education process which simulates the competitive process of recruitment and delivers the most impressive students to employers, while also reaching 1 in 3 of the eligible second years and delivering formative feedback on their CV & interview performance to all participants. The 2-4 weeks micro-placement offer students an exploratory experience of the labour market, not just the confirmatory effect offered by longer internships, and so this programme enables good careers decision making as well as providing career-enhancing credibility and contacts.

Some of the elements that impressed the judges most were:

  • The focus around Key Performance Indicators against clear objectives.
  • The marked shift in the culture of placements at the university and engagement with students that wouldn’t ordinarily have come to the career service or undertaken work experience.
  • The panel liked the innovative approach and the competition element prepared students for realities of world of work.
  • Very clearly articulated impact results against objectives

Liz Wilkinson, Head of Royal Holloway Careers & Employability said:

This achievement has been a real team effort both within Royal Holloway Careers and Employability and across the campus. Royal Holloway is delighted with the award and the Principal, Paul Layzell, has already written to express his appreciation of the hard work and innovation from Careers and Employability that has gone into this success.

In two years placement provision has developed from a simple scheme for around 20 students in two academic departments, to an integrated employability and placement RoyalHolloway_200curriculum for eight departments impacting 37% of eligible second years. The departments that are currently involved include Media Arts, English, Classics, History, Music, Criminology, Biological Sciences and Maths.

The innovative aspect of the scheme is that it also helps students who don’t win one of the career-launching placements. The scheme appeals to all students, including those who are least likely to proactively access the careers service early. The two-week micro-placements allow students to experience work in a particular sector, while enhancing their skills and CVs through coaching sessions. The process of competing for a short placement engages students in mastering job hunting techniques before their final year.

Bob Gilworth, Director of College Careers Service, The Careers Group, University of London remarked:

Our team at RHUL is breaking really important new ground in the availability of exploratory work experience for students amidst dominant discourse which suggest that all HE level work experience is part of the talent pipeline and must therefore be purely confirmatory for those with an already defined career path. This is becoming a hot topic and Liz and co are leading the way.

Winners were announced at the AGR Development Conference 2015, on 19th March.

Not only will the initiative be expanded at Royal Holloway, SOAS Careers Service is now launching its own version and The Careers Group, University of London is happy to talk about how this approach could be adapted for different contexts.  Find out more about The Careers Group, University of London‘s career development and employability services.

Hugely Successful Careers and Employabilty MOOC Back in June

With 96% of participants in the first iteration of the Enhance Your Career and Employability Skills MOOC in 2014 rating the course excellent, very good or good it’s little surprise that the demand for the course to be run again has been accepted.

MOOC2015With over 89,000 active participants last year, recent research by Coursera indicates that this MOOC is the seventh largest ever to be offered through the Coursera platform, in terms of number of registrations.  These factors, plus the fact that over 20,000 participants have already registered an interest in a re-run of the course, means that The Careers Group, University of London is really looking forward to sharing the course in just a couple of months’ time.

Building on from the successful content of last year’s course The Careers Group are looking forward to some innovative features this year.  These include involving a greater diversity of featured employers, including those who recruit professionals at a later stage of their career in addition to the range of graduate recruiters already featured in the course materials.

One of the course instructors, Laura Brammar said,

‘One of the really exciting features of last year’s Enhance your Career and Employability Skills MOOC was the sheer diversity of participants, from those who have just graduated right through to experienced professionals looking for more senior roles.  This year we aim to reflect that diversity more widely by incorporating the views and perspectives from a wider range of organisations and employers’.

Whilst participants across the world need to wait until June 2015 to gain access to the expertise and guidance of careers consultants within The Careers Group, those same careers professionals are available for individual careers and professional development support via The Careers Group Consultancy.

Both Senior Careers Consultant Laura and fellow instructor, David Winter, Head of Research and Consultancy regularly see clients for individual careers guidance appointments as do a range of colleagues, such as Hilary Moor, who also feature in the MOOC, which was shortlisted for a Career Development Award in 2014.
For more information about The Careers Group Consultancy and to find out how you can access world-class careers and professional development support on your doorstep visit

The Careers Group Joins Market Research Society (MRS)

In light of the extensive market research undertaken by The Careers Group, University of London, we are proud to announce our partnership with the Market Research Society – the world’s largest trade association for the research sector.  Our membership signifies a promise to all clients to deliver the highest research standards whilst abiding by the MRS Code of Conduct.


All of our market research staff will undergo formal training, and will have immediate access to professional standards advice and guidance to ensure we uphold the trusted sign of credibility amongst research buyers.

Director of College Careers Services at The Careers Group, University of London, Bob Gilworth commented:

“Being on top of the data is essential for a professional organisation in the graduate employability field. MRS membership is a sign of our commitment to high standards in gathering, analysing and interpreting data for our member Colleges and other clients.”

This will be hugely beneficial to the large-scale operation we run for the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey (DLHE) for over 150 education institutions, and other alternative surveys we are undertaking for other organisations.

Guardian Careers Webchat

Senior Careers Consultant at The Careers Group, University of London, Laura Brammar, will be appearing on the Guardian’s live online Q&A today to answer questions from graduates about how to choose the right career path.

The panel of experts will be looking in particular at:

  • How to decide what you want in a job
  • CV and cover letter tips for school leaver and graduates
  • Which careers would best suit your personality and skillset
  • How to find your dream job

Laura Brammar has been supporting students, graduates and careers changers since 2004. By working at The Careers Group, who provide careers services for dozens of HEIs including The Courtauld Institute of Art, she has helped many graduates take a step towards career success through finding employment or another career related opportunity.

The live Q&A Thursday 26 February from 1-3pm GMT .

Find out more about The Careers Group, University of London’s employability services.

TARGETjobs AGCAS Award for Careers Service Engagement – Phoenix Education Trust & QProjects

Queen Mary Careers & Enterprise Centre, part of The Careers Group, University of London has had its nomination, Phoenix Education Trust, shortlisted by the judging panel for TARGETjobs AGCAS Award for Careers Service Engagement. The panel shortlisted six employers in total from a strong field.

The award recognises organisations who have been eQueen Mary Studentsspecially active and effective on campus in working with a service. Phoenix Education Trust is a great advocate of the QProjects Work Experience Scheme which places Queen Mary students into east London charities to deliver projects that would otherwise be delayed or not go ahead because of a lack of resources. Last year they employed maths and economics students as ‘Data Analysis Project Leaders’. A spokesperson for the Phoenix Education Trust described the students as “exceptional”, adding: “They have been competent, confident and full of ideas.”

Eluned Jones, AGCAS President, said:

“We invite HE careers services to nominate an employer with whom they work collaboratively to ensure that students are equipped with the knowledge, skills and experience that will allow them to enter, thrive in, and gain satisfaction from the world of work. This award recognises and promotes the important contribution many employers make to the work of careers services.”

The winner will be chosen by the AGCAS board and announced at the TARGETjobs National Graduate Recruitment Awards at Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London on 1st April.

Response to High Fliers

The High Fliers graduate market report released yesterday, showed that the market continues to improve and that university careers services remain the key channels to graduate talent for the UK’s top employers. As the largest Higher Education careers service in Europe, The Careers Group, University of London can confirm these trends and add some further information due to the scale and diversity of our operation.

For understandable reasons, High Fliers relates to the Times Top 100 employers only. Whilst a number of our Colleges are specifically targeted by those employers, the Careers Group’s collaborative job vacancy system covers a much broader spectrum of graduate opportunities and has also shown growth of 65% from August 13 to July 14. The increase spanned every industry including arts and heritage, education, government and politics, the environment, leisure and science.

Similarly there has been significant growth in paid graduate internships beyond the Times Top 100 employers demonstrating the increased understanding that SMEs have of the value added by graduates.

The Careers Group’s Member College Wins High Impact Award for Global Entrepreneurship Week 2014

Goldsmiths careers service, part of The Careers Group, University of London has won a High Impact award for Global Entrepreneurship Week 2014, in recognition of its contribution.

Vanessa Freeman, Senior Careers Consultant and the events’ organiser said:

From business planning to denim recycling, co-operatives to corporations, the week of enterprise events, run in collaboration with the Institute of Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship (ICCE), covered the practical and the creative. 

The Global Entrepreneurship Week campaign is hosted by Youth Business International, a charitable network of initiatives helping young entrepreneurs in 40 countries around the world.