Finding jobs

On this pageFinding a job

Tips and advice from employers and experts

Weekly Masters careers digest

Studying for a Masters can be intense, meaning that it can be difficult to set time aside to research and register for careers events, or to search for job vacancies and other opportunities.

That’s why we put together a weekly (term-time) ‘digest,’ signposting key events, resources, vacancies and other opportunities relevant for Masters students. It’s the perfect one-stop way for you to keep up-to-date with ‘all things careers’ during your Masters.

The Digest is sent out as an announcement through our Masters Careers Online Canvas course, so why not self-enrol now so you don’t miss out.

Post Grad Tips guide

This guide was put together especially for taught postgraduates, to give you an insider’s view on how to get ahead with job applications, interviews and more. Download your copy of Post Grad Tips (PDF - 2.02MB)

CV advice

“The average time spent looking at a CV for the first time, either by a recruiter or hiring manager, is roughly only 30 seconds! So make sure your CV is very clear and concise. Employment history should be very visible, with specific dates and bullet points of your key responsibilities and achievements”

-          Angela Rehrl, Senior Recruiter for Evidera

“We want you to articulate why you are particularly interested in working for us. We look for tailored applications that directly address the points raised in the job advertisement”
-          Sophie Pearson, Senior HR Administrator for Costello Medical Consulting Ltd.

“Always do your research and talk specifically about the company or organisation that you are applying to in your cover letter or application. Address how they stand out from their competitors. Have they won awards, or implemented new strategies? If so, show your awareness by mentioning this”
-          Rob Pilbrow, Editorial Services Director for Porterhouse Medical

“Some more generic employers may not exactly understand the difference between a graduate and a postgraduate, or the benefits of hiring a Masters over a Bachelors graduate. In your application, you have to tell them what these benefits are”
-          Christiane Iwersen, Postgraduate Internship Project Coordinator with Graduate Advantage

Here's some advice on formatting your CV from Marni Brennan, Recruitment Consultant at CY Partners: CV format advice (PDF - 200KB)

Job applications

Careers Network runs a series of interactive workshops designed to give you the confidence and tools to succeed in all aspects of the recruitment process. Take a look at our Quick Guides to get you started: 

Internships

Getting work experience in a relevant field will enhance your prospects of getting a job. Look at the internships website to learn how to find opportunities and when and how to apply: birmingham.ac.uk/internships. Don’t forget that you can talk to your college internships officer about opportunities. Also check out the Masters Consultancy Challenge.

Graduate schemes

If you came straight from undergraduate to Masters, or don't have any specific career plans in mind, you may be interested in applying for more general graduate schemes. Many of these schemes welcome applications from Masters students. Most of the large organisations open applications to their graduate schemes in September/October, up to twelve months in advance of when new graduates will begin their jobs. Here's some advice in response to popular questions we get asked by Masters students looking to apply for graduate schemes: Graduate schemes (PDF - 117KB).

Recruitment consultancy

If you are interested in a career in recruitment or want to find out more about it, read our handy informative guide: Recruitment (PDF - 340KB).

Teaching

Because of your passion for your subject and your deeper knowledge, teaching is a popular career option for some Masters students. Here’s some information about training routes available and application tips: Teaching (PDF - 365KB).

International students

If you're an international Masters student hoping to work in the UK after graduation, you'll need to start your search early and be proactive. Our International Students Careers resources can help.

 

Job hunting links and resources

General job hunting links and resources

  • Start by searching Careers Connect, the University's own online job database. You can search according to your sector(s) of interest, location, subject of study and more. Includes vacancies where employers are asking for a Masters! When you log in, complete your profile and fill in your interests for email alerts about jobs that may interest you.
  • Find out which sector-specific job boards (see the list in the drop-down below) are used to advertise jobs in your chosen field.
  • Some job boards allow you to create an account and sign up for email alerts when jobs are advertised that may be of interest to you. Sign up a few months before you formally start your job search if you can: not only will you get job opportunities straight to your inbox, but you'll also gain a good insight into what roles are available, where the jobs are and the types of skills/experience that employers are seeking.
  • Jiscmail (www.jiscmail.ac.uk) is a national academic mailing service in the UK. Use the site's search facility to find out if there are any mailing lists associated with your professional area(s) of interest and sign up to these. They can be a great source of information on job vacancies.
  • Find out if there is a professional body or association linked to the sector(s) you are interested in; these organisations often have careers sections on their websites which can be useful sources of job vacancies and advice. Rowena, one of our former PhD students, compiled a comprehensive list of these organisations which you can find here (MS Excel - 146KB): there are over 700 of them!
  • Let others know that you're looking! The more people know that you're looking for work, the more likely it is that someone will send details of opportunities your way...
  • Work on your online presence, especially via LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a great way of researching people who currently work in areas that interest you, and seeing how they got to where they are now. To get started on your LinkedIn profile, or check it's up-to-scratch, take a look at our LinkedIn Canvas course.
  • If you are looking for jobs and opportunities outside the UK, you can use the jobs and internships portal within Passport Career to take your job search worldwide.

Sector-specific job hunting links and resources

Accountancy, actuarial and finance

Advertising, public relations and marketing

Charities and voluntary sector

  • Charity Job: charity jobs and volunteering opportunities from top charities working in the UK and around the world
  • Third Sector Jobs: the latest voluntary sector news and jobs including charity finance, fundraising, governance, management and communications
  • Charity People: specialist recruitment consultancy dedicated to the charity sector

Education

  • Jobs.ac.uk: Higher Education jobs – academic and non-academic
  • THE: Higher Education jobs resource from The Times
  • TES: Secondary Education jobs and resources through The Times

Engineering and technology

Heritage and cultural sector, including libraries, museums and galleries

International development and NGOs

Media, publishing and creative

Natural resources and the environment

Pharmaceuticals, biotech and healthcare

  • PharmiWeb: a useful resource for pharma, biotech, life science and healthcare news, jobs, careers information, events and resources from the UK, Europe and across the world
  • New Scientist jobs
  • emedcareers: For job hunting in pharmaceutical, biotechnology or healthcare roles, including areas such as medical devices and toxicology
  • NHS Careers

Politics, public affairs and public sector

  • w4mpjobs: The go-to place to find job vacancies in public sector and political organisations, including Think Tanks, Communications Agencies and opportunities to work with Members of Parliament
  • PubAffairs: A comprehensive directory of lobbying and public affairs links, and a useful jobs board
  • LSE International Government: The London School of Economics have compiled this useful list of resources linked to finding opportunities in international governments
  • Civil Service jobs 
  • EuroBrussels: newly available internships, stagiaires and trainee positions in EU Affairs
  • Peter Childs Ltd: a specialist recruitment consultancy with a long history of placements within the communications industry. Clients include organisations of all sizes in the private, public and third sectors as well as public relations and government affairs consultancies

Psychology

Science and science support 

Country-specific/ international job hunting links and resources

  • Gradlink China: award-winning careers site for Chinese students studying in the UK
  • Lockin China: organisation supporting students returning to China after studying abroad
  • Gradlink ASEAN: expert advice about getting a graduate job in South-East Asia - including Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam and Thailand
  • Gradlink Africa: especially for African students studying in the UK
  • Gradlink India: a place for learning about graduate opportunities and connecting with graduate employers in India who are keen to recruit UK-educated Indian graduates
  • Gradlink Bangladesh: specialist careers site for Bangladeshi students studying in the UK
  • Gradlink Canada: find out about graduate opportunities and connect with graduate employers across Canada
  • Country Guides for International Students: this series offers practical advice to international students who want to return to their home country to look for work. They contain lists of job hunting links and resources for each particular country
  • Post Study: helping international students find opportunities in the UK and British students find opportunities abroad