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My Experience with Graft: Otis Robinson

 10th Oct 2018

Until recently, I had never used an agency to find work, but my experience with Graft was great.

Towards the end of my masters, I had been worried about being unable to find work in Leeds where I could utilise my skills. As a journalism student my choices seemed scarce and Google did nothing to make me believe otherwise. Despite searching endlessly on a number of employment websites, I was really struggling to find a suitable position. It started to become a little bit discouraging, and I was considering moving back home after my course ended.

Before I could begin to panic, I was informed by a tutor at Leeds Beckett University that Graft could help students with digital media-related degrees to find employment in the area. The company was new – in fact, only a month old – but I sent the founder, Melanie Parker, a message.

Setting up a plan

An instant response led to an informal meeting the next week. Over a hot chocolate, Melanie and I got to grips with my abilities.

By whittling down to the basics (what I’m good at, what I’d like to do, etc.) we were able to set some goals into place. We had forged a specific idea of the type of graduate roles I wanted to be considered for in just an hour. Melanie knew my strengths and I knew I wasn’t the first confused graduate she had come across.

Opportunities in the north

Graft could offer me interviews with a number of their clients and contacts – these were based in marketing, content creation and other media roles, right in the heart of Leeds.

Graft’s network stretches across the north and uncovers hundreds of businesses that don’t make themselves seen on job boards. Graft brought attention to a number of talented start-up companies and SMEs that frequently look to hire graduates. In addition, Graft knew that big-name businesses had begun to set up offices in the Leeds city centre.

The interview

When my first interview was set up, Melanie could tell I was nervous.

She reminded me of my talent, potential for success and coached me through the interview process to ensure I was the most prepared I could be.

I got the job!

I’m currently a month into my role as marketing executive for Halston Marketing and I couldn’t be more grateful for Graft’s help.

It’s because of their encouragement and support that I’m able to stay in Leeds to build a career using the skills I gained at university.

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