Business in today's digitally connected world is increasingly global and many international business graduates work in a variety of sectors. Find out where the degree could take you
Jobs directly related to your degree include:
- Business development manager
- Data scientist
- Financial trader
- Human resources officer
- Marketing executive
- Public relations account executive
- Sales executive
- Supply chain manager
Jobs where your degree would be useful include:
- Compliance officer
- Digital marketer
- Financial manager
- Management consultant
- Media planner
- Public affairs consultant
- Recruitment consultant
Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here.
A degree in international business prepares you for a career in global, culturally-diverse businesses and these opportunities span sectors and industries. Employers typically expect graduates to have experience of working in a business environment so it's a good idea to undertake some relevant experience before you graduate.
If you're looking to specialise in international business or hope to join a global company, it is advisable to show a clear interest in different cultures. Volunteering and even travelling abroad will help you to demonstrate this, as will an ability to speak a foreign language.
However, remember that international business does not always require you to be based abroad, with most ecommerce and digital businesses having an international client base.
If you have the opportunity to undertake a 'sandwich' year abroad or teach English as a second language, they will help you to differentiate yourself to global employers.
Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.
International business graduates often join employers in sectors closely related to the subject such as marketing, HR, finance and sales.
Common employers include:
- management consultancies
- recruitment agencies
- technology companies.
Global and international employers are often, but certainly not always, based in large cities, with London offering the largest number of international graduate vacancies.
International companies typically have standalone early careers websites and it is worth following the ones of interest to you via their social media accounts (specifically Twitter and LinkedIn, though increasingly Snapchat is being used as an easy way for companies to tell you more about themselves).
Skills for your CV
As well as introducing you to business in different countries and cultures, a degree in international business provides you with a range of in-demand skills, such as:
- appreciation of cultural differences
- communicating to different audiences
- critical thinking skills
- planning and management skills
- problem-solving skills
- research and analysis
- teamworking skills.
Many international business courses encourage international study or work experience so you may also be able to demonstrate transferable skills such as learning a new language, flexibility, cultural awareness and curiosity.
Some international business graduates choose to study an MBA, though work experience is typically expected before starting a MBA programme.
Studying or training abroad is a popular choice for international business graduates as it provides additional exposure to different countries and cultures. You may choose to study a specific field within business, particularly for specialist fields such as innovation or digital marketing.
Employers often state their preferred professional qualification so it is worth researching this. Examples of related professional qualifications include:
- HR: Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)
- Management: Chartered Management Institute (CMI)
- Marketing: Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM)
What do international business graduates do?
More than three quarters of international business graduates are employed six months after graduating. Of these, half are working in business, HR, finance, marketing, PR or sales with the most popular job being marketing executive.
Many graduates choose to pursue further study, with 11.5% studying or choosing to combine work and study. A relatively high proportion (8.8%) of international business graduates are managers.
|Working and studying||4.5|
|Type of work||Percentage|
|Business, HR and financial||25.4|
|Marketing, PR and sales||22|
|Retail, catering and bar work||12.3|
Find out what other graduates are doing six months after finishing their degrees in What Do Graduates Do?
Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.