Finding jobs and internships
There are many different ways of finding advertised internships and jobs.
You can increase your chances of success by combining different methods and this page lists places to look for opportunities. For information on when to start searching see our page on application timelines.
Most universities have a jobs board for students (and graduates), at Imperial this can be found on JobsLive, and is where you will find internship and job opportunities from employers specifically targeting Imperial students and graduates. If you have previously studied at another university, you may still have access to their jobs board too.
Search for jobs
JobsLive and GoinGlobal
The Careers Service at Imperial offers two resources (JobsLive and GoinGlobal) to help you search for jobs in the UK and abroad. You can access these resources for up to three years after you graduate. Both contain jobs boards and are an easy way to start searching for opportunities.
JobsLive is a great place to start as all the opportunities will be suitable for STEM students/recent graduates, and you can filter them by industry sector, location, and job role. However, don’t limit your job search to this or any university jobs board as it won’t be a complete picture of all the opportunities out there.
GoinGlobal offers country specific career and employment resources including worldwide job openings and internship listings. You can access it via the Careers website for free.
Student and graduate job boards
A streamlined way to search for internships and graduate/entry-level jobs is by using websites created for students and recent graduates. The advantage of these websites is that you do not need to filter out the opportunities only available to experienced professionals. The best known are:
- Gradcracker – STEM focused
- Bright Network
- Student Ladder
- Employment 4 students
Try to check a variety of different sites and not rely on one website alone, as each jobs board will have different opportunities from different employers.
Specialist job sites and professional bodies
Many areas of the jobs market have their own website for job hunting related to that area. Examples of these include: jobs.ac.uk (jobs in universities), DataScientistJobs, PHARMAjobs, CharityJob, environment jobs, AngelList (jobs in start-ups) and AllAboutLaw.
Many occupations are represented by professional bodies, examples of these include the Royal Society of Chemistry, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW) and the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA). You may already be aware of professional bodies and institutions that accredit your degree course. Professional bodies often have advice for people considering careers in their areas and sometimes host useful jobs boards. They may also include membership directories that you could use to identify potential employers to make speculative applications.
You can seach for both sector-specific jobs boards and professional bodies with the A-Z of Job Profiles on the Prospects website to find jobs relating to your interests. Each job profile lists relevant jobs boards and professional bodies towards the end.
The advantage of using specialist jobs boards and professional bodies is that you can find jobs directly linked to your interests. They also include jobs for more experienced professionals which could be interesting for you to read about as they can help you see the directions your career could develop in the future.
Catch-all job boards
There are some well-known places on the internet to look for advertised jobs that have hundreds of thousands of opportunities listed. Examples of these include indeed.com and LinkedIn. These can be overwhelming if you have never looked for a job before. However, once you have a clear idea of what you are looking for, they can be very useful in your job hunting.
Part-time and vacation jobs
There are lots of part-time and seasonal jobs advertised locally for work in shops, cafes, bars, restaurants, supermarkets and theatres etc. The retail and hospitality sectors can often offer flexible work to fit around your studies which can be a great way to supplement your income and develop skills in team work and customer service. This can help set you apart from other applicants when it is time to apply to internships and graduate roles. Vacancies are often advertised through “Help Wanted” signs in store windows or through large recruitment agencies like indeed.com, Monster or StudentJobs. Sometimes it is also worth asking in store if they need any additional staff too.
If you are looking for part-time or vacation work you can book a careers appointment to discuss your options and get help with applications.
Recruitment agencies act as an intermediary on behalf of employers to find suitable candidates to fill vacancies. Many specialise in a particular sector and have temp departments that applicants can sign up to, for casual or part-time work. You should always check that any recruitment agency is a member of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) before using them.
A recruitment agency should be used to supplement not replace your own job-hunting strategies. Bear in mind that they are operating on behalf of the employer rather than the candidate and their priority is to get the vacancy filled rather than find the ideal position for you.
You may be surprised to learn that not all jobs are advertised; sometimes you can create your own opportunity in the hidden job market. To find these hidden roles you will need to write a speculative application (see our section on cover letters). These applications are used to approach employers despite the fact they are not advertising a particular vacancy.