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Nottinghamshire graduate retention through the County Council

Nottinghamshire County Council have recently set up their Graduate Development Programme – a two-year scheme designed to shape the next generation of public sector/local government leaders and managers and which targets graduates and final year students who are studying at either of the two Nottingham universities or who live in Nottinghamshire.

Nottinghamshire graduate retention through the County Council

Through a partnership approach, the Careers and Employability Services at both universities worked with the Council to help raise awareness of the programme and promote opportunities to a wide range of students. This included the Council’s attendance at careers fairs, conducting employer presentations and involvement in sector specific events. Coupled with remote, targeted promotion through online jobs boards, relevant careers newsletters and via widening participation initiatives, the Council were able to engage with a broad range of students and encourage applications to the scheme.

Out of the 288 applications received in 2019, 167 were from students or recent graduates from the two Nottingham universities of whom 26 attended assessment centres with the result that three of the five trainees recruited to the 2019 cohort were graduates from the Nottingham universities. Feedback from successful graduates highlighted how they were made aware of the opportunity through their university careers service and how becoming a trainee on the scheme had helped them stay within Nottinghamshire.

“Working with the universities has helped us promote our scheme to our target audience of current students and recent graduates and has been a contributory factor to the success of attracting high quality trainees to our organisation.”

Adrian McKiernan, HR, Workforce and Organisational Development, Nottinghamshire County Council