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Tinsley Bridge Group

Mark Webber on the value of recruiting graduates

Mark Weber

Today’s graduates are bursting with new ideas and specialist knowledge. Their fresh, enthusiastic and dynamic outlook, and their enquiring nature, can help to strengthen your staff resources and increase productivity.

We choose to employ graduates because we need bright, committed and ambitious people. Attitude and intelligence are more important than experience! We have an ageing workforce at the company, and we need to bring in the next generation in time for the current generation to pass on their experience and skills. We find that graduates bring with them the latest thinking, and continually question what we do. Also we benefit from the relationship the company has with Sheffield’s two great universities!

The Group recruits graduates in a variety of different ways, for example through direct recruiting. Sophie Jewett, for instance, came to us for work experience at a time when we were looking for a Finance Clerk. She did extremely well and showed great enthusiasm and potential so we decided to employ her full-time!

We were extremely impressed with how quickly Sophie picked things up when she first started at the company. She demonstrated a strong ability to get through a lot of work and was always looking for extra things she could do to help. She has also helped to improve the office environment bringing a younger outlook.

The main challenge is to keep graduates busy with interesting work while they are still learning about both the company and the job. When graduates come to join us not having a lot of work experience we recognise the need to continually push them so that they are constantly learning and developing. SMEs tend to have quite flat management structures so it is important that graduates have clear career paths within the company which is more about increasing their wider responsibilities than it is about moving on to the next job. This is why we have exposed our graduates to a wide range of experiences across the company, which is something that SMEs are able to do unlike larger companies.