Events & News

The Top 10 Questions We Get Asked

Every year the ScotGrad team meets thousands of students and graduates at careers fairs to answer questions and provide tips on applying for placements.

Published: 10/10/2016

ScotGrad table at Careers Fair

After travelling around Scotland manning the ScotGrad stalls, programme manager Kelly Barbour answers the top ten most frequently asked questions from prospective candidates.

1.    What type of placements does ScotGrad offer?

The first thing candidates tend to ask is about the kind of placements ScotGrad offers. ScotGrad placements are designed to provide you with project-based, paid work experience during your studies and for after you graduate – no previous experience is necessary. Placements can be anywhere up to 12 months within small to medium sized organisations in an array of sectors across Scotland. Projects are varied and could cover innovation, internationalisation, maximising digital opportunities and improving business processes.

2.    Are ScotGrad placements limited to specific industries?

Another of the most commonly asked questions at careers fairs is whether ScotGrad placements are for specific industries. They aren’t. We work with a whole range of organisations across a number of sectors from finance to tourism, life sciences to IT, and engineering to textiles.

3.    Is there a minimum degree level/mark required?

No – we accept all levels of degrees. For graduate placements, you need to have graduated at degree or postgraduate level, or with an HNC or HND in the last four years. For student placements, eligibility varies – check details here.

4.    Does ScotGrad only work with Scottish candidates?

We accept applications from all nationalities and universities from around the world as long as candidates meet the eligibility requirements. Since 2010 ScotGrad has successfully helped students and graduates from around 25 different countries secure placements.

5.    Can ScotGrad offer Visa sponsorship?

ScotGrad is unable to sponsor graduates, but advice on visas and sponsorships is available from TalentScotland and the UK Visas and Immigration websites. 

6.    Where are the placements based?

At careers fairs, we meet graduates who want to stay in the town or city they studied in as well as those who want to move elsewhere. Thankfully for both, ScotGrad’s placements are all over Scotland. In the last couple of months, we’ve placed graduates in major cities and smaller towns, from the Scottish Borders up to the Highlands and Islands. Click to see a full list of our current placement opportunities.

7.    Can ScotGrad offer relocation advice?

If you’re a candidate looking to move, finding and funding accommodation is your responsibility. For some remote placements, we encourage employers to suggest suitable options, but this will be on a case-by-case basis.

8.    What makes a good application?

Candidates often ask for advice on how to make their application stand out from the crowd. There is information available on the ScotGrad website, from application dos and don’ts to what employers are looking for. However, in the first instance please speak to your careers service who will provide expert advice, even after you have graduated. Ultimately each organisation will have an idea of the person it is looking to recruit, so read the vacancy description carefully and tailor your application and CV accordingly.

9.    When can I apply?

For graduate placements, you can start applying up to 6 months before you graduate. As long as you graduated within the last four years and have no more than 12 months of graduate level work experience since your latest graduation you are eligible to start a placement. There is no age limit for applications. For student placements, check out our overview page.

10.  How do I apply?

You apply through the ScotGrad website. Once you have found the placement you want to apply for and you’ve registered your free ScotGrad account, click the ‘apply for position’ button. We recommend writing your application offline first and spell-checking it before submitting the online form. Once submitted, the employer will contact you directly to let you know the status of your application.

Find out when the ScotGrad team will be at a careers fair near you. Come say hello and we’d be happy to help answer any of your questions.