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Getting a graduate job in property and construction

Word of mouth and contacts can be important in the property and construction sector...

Do I need a related degree?

There are specialist degrees for many areas of the property and construction sector, including engineering, surveying and architecture. For other areas, such as estates management, a specialist degree may be an advantage but many entrants have other qualifications. Other roles, notably estate agents, often do not require a specific degree subject.

To find out if a relevant degree is required for the occupation you're interested in or if a particular subject is more applicable than others, see types of jobs.

What skills do employers want?

Graduate recruiters in the property and construction sector require candidates with:

  • problem-solving skills and the ability to work on their own initiative;
  • numeracy skills;
  • the ability to work in a team;
  • project management skills;
  • a level of physical fitness for those needing to spend time on site in all weathers.

Where can I get work experience?

Some of the larger organisations in the construction sector offer formal work experience through placements or internship opportunities, and for some employers, this work experience is necessary to access graduate training schemes.

The majority of organisations are small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who may not advertise formal work placements, so you may need to approach them to ask if there are any work-shadowing opportunities. As opportunities in smaller organisations are often found through word of mouth, it is important to build a network of contacts.

To find work placements and internships in the property and construction sector, search for work experience.

How do I find a graduate job in property and construction?

Many smaller organisations in this sector do not recruit at set times through graduate schemes but as and when they need staff, so local job boards and newspapers may be the best way to find jobs in such firms. Some larger organisations in the transport and logistics sector that offer a graduate scheme, such as Balfour Beatty, Laing O'Rourke and Skanka, advertise vacancies through their websites.

There may be opportunities with organisations that manage their own property portfolios and run their own estates management, such as Network Rail, John Lewis and BNP Paribas.

To find jobs in the sector, search graduate jobs in construction and property.

Written by Editor, Graduate Prospects
July 2013

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