Written on 21 July 2015.

Citi, Unilever, Syngenta… Regardless of the industry and the location of the company, all graduate programme recruiters are looking for the same traits in their candidates:

• Excellent academic record (minimum is a 2.1 in the UK system, which is over 13 in the French system)
• Demonstrated motivation for the company and the role
• A set of competencies (also called “soft skills”) that allow them to perform at an above-average level, including international exposure, communication skills, critical thinking, teamwork, results-orientation and leadership.
• Languages: there is a preference for candidates speaking 2-3 (European) languages fluently.

Remember you need to have all four to be a well-rounded candidate, so focus on your studies to achieve high grades, take time to prepare for the application and recruitment process to show your motivation, and make use of all the opportunities provided by EDHEC to help you develop your managerial competencies.

Landing a graduate programme is a long-term effort, so you need to think about it in advance and take the necessary steps during M1 and your Gap Year.

For instance, if you would like to join a graduate programme after graduation, you have to know that M1 grades will be very important, as you will need to mention them in the application during your first months in M2. So you must work really hard at school to achieve an average above 13. But the offer will only be confirmed when the company receives your final M2/MSc grades, meaning you have to keep up your average during your final year.

The Gap Year internships are also very relevant as they set you aside from all other candidates.

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