graduate creative role

March 21, 2017, by Carla

Top Tips for Securing Your First Graduate Creative Role

By Michon, a Nottingham-based full-service creative agency

Despite the notoriously tough competition for roles across the creative sector, Nottingham continues to provide a hotbed of opportunity for young professionals and recent graduates looking to pave the way into their first design, marketing or advertising job. 

Nottingham’s rich heritage in textiles, fashion and more recently technology, means you don’t need to look far for businesses looking to recruit the city’s top graduate talent.

“Getting your first step in the door of a creative agency can be a tough challenge. However the groundwork put in during your time at university will hold you in strong stead.” – Victoria Carroll, Marketing Communications Director at Michon

What’s more, with initiatives such as the Nottingham’s Strategic Cultural Partnership producing a 10 year cultural framework aimed at increasing roles in the creative and digital industries, this city is a great place to start your future. Here’s how.

Crack your creative portfolio

Your portfolio is usually the first impression of you to your potential employer, so it’s important it looks professional. It’s essential that your collection of work is up-to-date, but avoid the temptation of filling it to bursting point.

Recruiters often have to sift through dozens of job applications, so it’s crucial you showcase your best work using two or three quality projects. If applying for your first job, use examples of your personal projects or freelance work – this can really help demonstrate your passion. Do you write a blog? Have you designed your own website? Do you have a portfolio on Behance?

Develop your personal brand

During the course of your creative career, it’s likely that you will work with hundreds of different businesses. However, for recruiters or prospective employers, your personal brand is crucial.

When presenting examples of your work, make sure that your personal style shines through across all elements of the job. Furthermore, be prepared to talk about your brand and the companies that inspire you, if you are lucky enough to make it to interview.

Placement opportunities are key

The summer break provides the perfect opportunity for you to grab a seat within a creative agency. This could be a couple of weeks or even a summer-long placement. With many members of staff choosing to take their holidays during the warmer months, companies often require more hands on deck to help meet impending deadlines and keep clients happy. There is definitely no harm in giving your local creative agency a call ahead of the summer holidays.

“At Michon, we offer placements and paid internships to students and graduates wanting a career in design or marketing. We’re always on the lookout for new talent and try wherever possible to recruit juniors from the Nottingham creative pool,” adds Victoria.

Are you interested in creative opportunities? You can find out more about creative roles in the digital industries, advertising and marketing on our website.  

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