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Employing graduates - a guide for SMEs 

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Specialist Skills Support Programme

Are you an SME manager or owner wondering whether to recruit a graduate? Do you want to explore what a graduate could offer your business and find out more about what might be involved?  

From this starting page, you can access information, advice and tips to help you with your next steps, learning more about the potential benefits to your business, different ways to access and utilise graduate expertise, and how to support and retain them once they are on board.

Once you’ve decided that input from a current student or new graduate could be just what your business needs, you need to consider which universities to approach. Their careers websites will often have dedicated provision for employers, giving you an overview of what the institution can offer and who to speak to about different activities.

Unless you have very specific technical requirements that are only covered by degree courses in particular institutions, it probably makes logistical sense to explore what your local institutions have to offer first. The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) provides a useful regional map of UK universities and colleges, to help you identify the institutions in your area. 

Introducing the Specialist Skills Programme

The Specialist Skills Support Programme (SSSP) is delivering a programme of activities to support Micro, Small and/or Medium Sized Enterprises (SME). The Programme is funded by the European Social Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is the Managing Authority for the European Social Fund. The Programme is being led by Calderdale College of which the University of York are one of the delivery partners working across three of the programme strands, which includes Specialist Support for an Ageing Workforce, Develop Your Business Through Graduates and Support for Changing Markets.