What are candidates really looking for? Milkround revealed all at this year’s graduate Insight Breakfast

On the morning of 20th June we held our annual Insight Breakfast, presenting our findings from the latest student and graduate Candidate Compass report. We had a full room full of conscientious employers waiting to find out what students have to say about their career confidence this year.

This year we surveyed over 5,700 students and graduates, asking them about their opinions of the so-called “graduate skills gap”, salary expectations and application processes. There was a strong emphasis around gender disparities and mental health, topics both highly relevant in current news. We offered recommendations along the way which are also cited in the downloadable version found here.

We were privileged to be joined by Barbara Dischinger from WISE, who also spoke at the breakfast. WISE enables and energises people in business, industry and education to increase the participation, contribution and success of women in STEM. Barbara focused her talk on Women in STEM and the gaps that persist.

Here is a snippet of what students and graduates had to say on some key issues:

Career confidence:
41% of females believe a lack of confidence holds them back
25% of males say the same

24% of respondents claim flexible working hours would increase their productivity

34% of respondents say their personal values impact their career choices

Mental health:
17% of our respondents cite their mental health as a personal barrier

49% of females would be interested in career in technology
73% of males would pursue this route

You can find more information in this year’s report. Download your copy here.

If you have any questions or would like to speak to us in more detail, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Number: 0333 0145 111
Email: sales@milkround.com

Our best yet: Careers Adviser Conference 2018

On the 24th and 25th May, Milkround School Leavers hosted our annual Careers Adviser Conference, in partnership with Central Careers Hub, at our offices in Southwark. The conference provides a platform in which authorities and employers can educate school leaver influencers on the alternatives to university and other opportunities available to students, and how best to offer support and career guidance.

Over 200 careers advisers attended the event, hearing from an array of speakers about the current state of the apprenticeship market. On both mornings Rumneet Johal, Marketing Executive at Milkround, presented findings from Milkround’s School Leaver Candidate Compass report, explaining how school leavers currently feel about their career confidence and offering recommendations to careers advisers on how best they can tackle these challenges head on.

Across each day we heard from three leading employers and education providers who offered insight into their apprenticeship and school leaver programmes. These included IBM, ICAEW and Laing O’Rourke. A strong focus of the conversation was around the application processes, sparking many questions from the audience. Furthermore, we brought apprentices up to the stage from each of these companies to talk in a separate Q&A panel to discuss their own personal experiences and sharing what encouraged them to decide to go down that career path.

Careers advisers were delighted to hear from Lord Storey CBE, on the first afternoon, who gave an excellent talk on the importance of careers guidance and education. On day two, the event concluded with a presentation from David Andrews, leading careers and education consultant, who highlighted a key overview of the careers landscape.

Other speakers we heard from included Jan Ellis, Chief Executive of the Career Development Institute who spoke about the state of careers. Andy Norman, a Research Analyst from the Centre for Progressive Policy also gave an insightful presentation on why the lack of information undermines the UK skills system.

Feedback from the careers advisers has been extremely popular with Jacqueline Otite, Careers Adviser thanking Milkround for the event; “Great work from Milkround at the careers conference last week. Thank you for your knowledge, hospitality and organising such a valuable event”. As well as hearing from inspirational speakers, careers advisers also had plenty of opportunities to network with the employers and enquire further into their school leaver programmes.

If you’re keen to hear more about Milkround School Leavers and how we can support with your school leaver recruitment, or how you can get involved with our future events, please get in touch:

E: schoolleavers@milkround.com

T: 0333 0145 111

Society Awards 2018

The Milkround team are very excited to announce 2018’s Society Awards will take place on 27th June this year!

Milkround’s Society Awards are a chance for us to recognise and celebrate some truly impressive university societies, and the individuals within those societies.

Those students who take the time to dedicate themselves to a university society alongside their studies are constantly refining their soft skills. Roles within societies such as president or treasurer require students to organise a team and be financially literate, which are valuable transferable skills they can bring into the workplace.

Not only are the Society Awards the perfect way to recognise those stand-out students, they also help connect students with leading employers by giving them the opportunity to network and hear insider knowledge on the graduate roles available.

The opportunity – for students

An individual from a society, or a society as a whole, can nominate themselves for an award via the Milkround website. We pick out the finalists from these applications, and invite them along to Milkround’s HQ for the big event!

On the day, students are asked to present the successes, importance and future aims of their society, or of their individual contribution to a society. Finally, they’ll talk the judges through what they would do with the £1,000 cash prize if they were to be crowned the winner.

The opportunity – for employers

Our sponsorship package includes:

  • The chance to network with over 20 top students from a range of universities and societies
  • Act as a judge on the day, with final say on the Committee’s Outstanding Contribution to a Society and the Individual to have made the Biggest Contribution to a Society awards
  • Deliver a workshop to the students – offering insight into your brand and graduate opportunities, engaging students in skills-based tasks – the workshop can be whatever you want it to be!
  • Your branding across all student communications promoting the Society Awards

Take a look at last year’s winners

To be a sponsor and judge of our Society Awards in June, give us a call on 0333 0145 111, or contact your Account Manager directly.

Careers Adviser Conference 2018

On the 24th and 25th May 2018, Milkround will be hosting our next annual Careers Adviser Conference, in partnership with Central Careers Hub.

Last year, over 200 career development professionals were in attendance, eager to learn more about the range of offerings available to students after leaving school.

Career advisers are a key influencer who are able to speak to thousands of students every day about their future career choices


CAC 2017
One of 2017’s panel sessions.


When: 10am-4pm 24th & 25th May
Where: Blue Fin Building, 110 Southwark Street, SE1 0TA

Currently available packages:


Continue reading “Careers Adviser Conference 2018”

Milkround’s latest insight into the school leaver market

Our Insight Breakfast

On Wednesday 15th November, Milkround offered our latest insight into the school leaver market. At our annual Insight Breakfast, we launched the findings from our most recent report, the School Leaver Candidate Compass 2017.


Lizzy Hunt and Ellie Green from Milkround’s marketing team share our report findings


It was a pleasure to be joined by The Prince’s Trust, who offered their own insight into social mobility in the school leaver market and how they actively tackle this, as well as how we as employers can all do more.


Russell Knight from The Prince’s Trust shares insight into student social mobility


We were also joined by two amazingly talented apprentices from Jaguar Land Rover and Grant Thornton – thank you Lucy and Holly! It was great to hear the positive impact apprenticeships can have on our young people and how these individuals have smashed barriers and challenged misconceptions held by some of their peers.

Key Findings from the Report

Our survey received over 3,200 responses, with the vast majority of these students studying AS or A Levels currently.

73% of school leavers believe the GCSE reform is a negative change. A third worry that employers will not understand the new system.

70% of our respondents do not believe it is crucial to have a university degree in order to have a successful carer.

98% say they are primarily told about the university as a career choice in school or college.

19% of our respondents who received free school meals had differing views on their future careers than their non-free school meal counterparts.

Download the report.

Teaching employability skills with UpRising

On Tuesday 3rd October, Milkround were joined by UpRising, as part of their ‘Fastlaners’ programme for 18-25 year olds.

UpRising is a national youth leadership development organisation. As a charity, they champion the critical issues surrounding diversity, social mobility and equality, by equipping young people with skills to aid their career success. Here at Milkround, we are dedicated to ensuring young people have career confidence and are given every opportunity to showcase their talents.

The students participated in a range of activities, including learning about the power of the “Elevator Pitch”, and how this is a great way to summarise skillset and past experience. Following this, students considered their personal motivations in the workplace and how these can differ between individuals, but nevertheless work within a collaborative team.   OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAStudents and graduates find it useful to be able to directly ask questions to employers, so Milkround hosted a Q&A session with our marketing team. We considered how career pathways can change depending on personal experience throughout university and beyond, and reiterated that there is a multitude of ways to reach a desired job.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe day ended with Insight Coaching’s Tambo Silavwe hosting the final session. He highlighted the importance of personal branding, and how to recognise and challenge preconceptions in the workplace.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe mixture of activities offered to the students and graduates gave them a strong understanding of the best way to present themselves, throughout the recruitment process and in the workplace generally. We look forward to our next Fastlaners day with UpRising; we can’t wait to meet more enthusiastic candidates!

For more information about our partners, or to enquire about Milkround events, contact info@milkround.com.

School Leaver Candidate Compass Insight Breakfast 2017

You’re invited to Milkround’s School Leaver Candidate Compass Insight Breakfast.

When: 8:30-11:00am, Wednesday 15th November 2017
Where: Foyles, 107 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2H 0DT

Book your FREE place here.

Join us to explore the mindsets of the school leaver market following our latest Candidate Compass report, containing findings from our survey of over 2,000 16-18 year olds.

How can you attract and recruit school leavers? What are their opinions on apprenticeships, and has this changed? What are their concerns when applying for their first jobs? Which soft skills do they believe they have, and which do they need support with?

Register on Eventbrite by 20th October to secure your place!

Any questions?
Email: ellie.green@milkround.com

Call: 0333 0145 111


The elevator pitch: teaching graduates the importance of self-branding

Ensuring young people realise their potential is important for us at Milkround.

On Thursday 13th July 2017,  we hosted an employability day alongside our partner UpRising, as part of their ‘Fastlaners’ programme for 18-25 year olds.

UpRising is a youth leadership development organisation who equip young people from under-represented backgrounds with skills to aid career success. As a charity, they champion diversity and understand that the best way to achieve this in the workplace is to support young people and develop their skillsets so they can flourish in successful careers.

The elevator pitch

The employability day began with a presentation by Milkround’s Rumneet Johal on  the elevator pitch, before the candidates were placed into groups. The pitch centred around identifying an overarching goal – whether that be a long-term career aim, the exchanging of contact details at a networking event, or simply a way to highlight skills at interview. Having this goal in mind aided the participants in explaining exactly why their past experience was relevant, or why their USP was so significant in the bigger picture. Aided by the Milkround team, each participant drafted their own pitches.

The participants could see immediately how the elevator pitch could be utilised in interviews or networking situations – in fact, they recognised it would be the perfect model for the speed networking session they would attend with another UpRising partner later that afternoon. The candidates expressed that standing before their peers to practice the pitches was a great way to prepare.

The elevator pitch

Self-awareness and motivation

Self-awareness is also incredibly important in the workplace, so paired with our interview tips was an activity where the participants could determine what they personally find motivating by identifying their ‘engagement needs’. This involved working through a questionnaire to determine whether personal motivation was driven by either the need for accomplishment, enjoyment, belonging, recognition, or advancement.  As a result, candidates were able identify their goals in terms of their own motivational needs.

Milkround understands this awareness is essential in terms of personal branding, and in ensuring collaborative and empathetic team players. Recognising their own needs, whether in sync or in opposition with others, is key in developing open-mindedness in a working environment.

Engagement needs questionnaire

Q & A

The final activity of the day was a  Q&A session with four Milkround team members. All were thrilled to be asked well thought-out questions by the UpRising participants. The questions voiced showed acute awareness of the multiple factors that constitute a successful, happy career.

Candidates asked the Milkround panel what the greatest challenges of their own careers were. Progression and the nature of the “three-to-five-year plan” were also raised, which opened an insightful debate about how useful pre-set career milestones are for each individual. Considering the pros and cons of conventions like this inspires out-of-the-box thinking.

It is always a pleasure to spend time with engaged and curious candidates , and our employability day alongside UpRising was no exception.

Our Q&A session

Emma Henly, the London Fastlaners Project Manager, summed up the day: “20 Fastlaners came to Milkround for the second time in July and it was a big success again among the young people and one of the highlights of the week!

All the participants were really impressed with the Milkround offices as well as the energy, commitment and enthusiasm of all the staff. They particularly loved the roof top terrace with the amazing views of London; it was a great way to finish the programme and inspire all the participants to achieve their career goals. UpRising is really pleased to be working with Milkround to tackle youth unemployment and boost the confidence and employability of a diverse range of young Londoners. We’re looking forward to more Fastlaners events with Milkround in the future!”

If you’d like to learn more about the events we host, please contact us at info@milkround.com.

Milkround society awards: showcasing student success

On Wednesday 5th July, Milkround were proud to host our annual Society Awards.

The Society Awards are always a highly anticipated event, as it allows us the chance to engage with some truly inspirational young people from our candidate pool. This year, all our finalists went above and beyond for their society pitches.

Learning about what successful students are looking for when it comes to their first graduate jobs was really enlightening both for us at Milkround and for the employers that attended on the day. By going directly to our graduate audience, we can ensure we match top talent with rewarding and challenging roles.

We are grateful to the judges Adam Isle, Oli Jacob and Qayum Mannan, who joined us from AstraZeneca, IBM, and UpRising respectively. They offered great feedback to our candidates, as well as the encouragement to consider their own graduate job offerings.

Our finalists enjoyed a day of sharing their successes and developing their skills at our London office

After an initial application process that assessed why these candidates in particular deserve recognition for their contribution to a society, we invited the finalists to our London office.

Here, they spent the day getting to know each other through career-driven workshops provided by the Milkround Marketing team, and had the opportunity to learn more about the key things employers are looking for.

Students were then asked to pitch to our judges. All three were overwhelmed not only by the sheer number of achievements highlighted by the high-quality presentations, but the students’ sense of social responsibility.

The judging panel found it incredibly difficult to choose between candidates who came from a range of societies, from Craft and Financial Trading to Law and Women in Leadership. The judges were impressed by the passion all candidates showed for diversity and inclusion. Several of the societies wanted to invest our £1,000 prize money into charity fundraisers, addressing issues including student mental health and welfare.

Congratulations to our winners!

Eva (left) and Lucia (right), with their Individual Contribution to a Society awards.
Open Minds were awarded with Outstanding Contribution to a Society, for their dedication to increasing confidence and leadership skills through creativity.

Adam Isle, Recruiter for AstraZeneca’s Innovative Medicines & Early Development Graduate Programme, said the nominees were ‘exactly the kind of students we’re looking for’.

The day proved to be fruitful for both students and employers. Not only did the finalists get to showcase their past achievements in front of three employers, they developed their skills in pitching both their societies and their own sense of self-branding. They were then able to engage in a final networking session at the end of the day.

If you are interested in being part of events such as our Society Awards, to not only increase your brand awareness among the student demographic, but to also grant recognition of truly unique student talent found through Milkround, do give us a call on 0333 0145 111, or email info@milkround.com.

Milkround’s annual Careers Adviser Conference

On the 25th and 26th May, Milkround School Leavers hosted their annual Careers Adviser Conference in partnership with Central Careers Hub and TfL.

Over 200 careers advisers attended at the London Transport Museum in Covent Garden learning about policies in education, changes in the curriculum, and apprenticeship opportunities for students. Each day began with an insight into EY and their school leaver programmes, followed by Steve Stewart from Careers England who spoke about the current state of play for careers advisers. Tim Miller from CCH and Martin McCourt from Your Life wrapped up the morning session by addressing exam changes and the future of work.

The afternoon’s highlights included two employer panels focussing on the apprenticeship levy and careers in accountancy. Careers advisers had the opportunity to pose questions to some of the UK’s leading school leaver employers, including IBM, Grant Thornton, ACCA, Laing O’Rourke, ICAEW and EY. On Thursday, careers advisers also had the chance to hear from Catherine Sezen from the Association of Colleges and Andrew McGettigan, author of ‘The Great University Gamble’, on the Friday. Both days concluded with TfL welcoming their own apprentices to the stage for a very insightful Q&A session.

One careers adviser  said the conference was “very informative and invaluable for keeping up with the latest employer careers opportunities, so that we can be in the best position for working with young people.”

For more information on how we can support you in reaching school leaver influencers or on how to get involved with Milkround’s events get in touch:

E: schoolleavers@milkround.com

T: 0333 0145 111