Guest post by Laura Bill
Heading to London is a common goal in the eyes of many graduates and there’s no question why. The UK capital city is bustling, highly cultural, and has a vast number of opportunities waiting to be explored for young and hopeful graduates looking to start their careers.
Internships are a popular job option for graduates as they typically provide on-the-job training in leading businesses and earning a respectable salary in the process.
If you have never lived or worked in London, it can be difficult to know what to expect, but if one thing’s for sure, it will certainly be different to a day out in the Big Smoke. This is your chance to boost your professional experience and launch a successful career in London.
In this blog, we’re going to provide some top tips on what you need to know about a London internship to set you off on the right foot:
You’ll earn a competitive salary
One of the benefits of working in London is that even internships are generally well-paid. Companies are keen to attract the best talent, so ensure your CV stands out to get through to the interview stage.
The higher wages are, however, a reflection of the higher cost of living within London, so you may need to be savvy with budgeting concerning food, social events, transport, and accommodation.
It was discovered by RateMyPlacement that the average internship wage is £21,873 per annum in comparison to the national average of £17,439.
If you’re not happy with the salary the employer is providing, don’t be afraid to discuss this point during the interview and mention your expectations. Realistically, they should be offering at least a minimum wage, but if the salary is slightly lower, it may be that they are willing to provide expenses for food and transport.
Work for the world’s best employers
London has been ranked as one of the best places in the world to work according to the Global Talent Survey. Not only is the city a hub of entertainment and activities, but it’s also home to some of the world’s leading businesses which allows talented interns to make their mark from the get-go.
Securing Internships for high-profile companies can be a challenge, so you may find it useful to sign up to a Graduate and internship recruitment agency such as Inspiring Interns where you’ll find a wide range of internships in London.
Getting the chance to work with global businesses will give your CV a competitive edge once your placement has ended and potentially help you climb the career ladder much quicker.
Finding somewhere to live
One of the biggest challenges of accepting an internship in London is finding suitable accommodation. As you may well expect, London rental prices are extortionately high – especially if you’re planning on living in the central zones.
Ideally, you want to be as close to your workplace as possible to save on commuting time, while sticking to a reasonable accommodation budget. However, the underground tube system is extremely efficient, meaning you can get from A to B with ease.
If you still haven’t yet found accommodation before starting your London internship, you can find properties for rent on websites such as Spareroom, Rightmove, and Zoopla.
Networking is key
A London internship is your chance to network with key players in your desired industry. As you’re likely to have no previous professional experience, those you meet along the way could provide valuable insight that could steer you in new and interesting directions – whether it’s a fellow intern, a colleague, or even company clients.
When asked to attend after-work social events with your team – go for it! Building connection is key to your personal and professional development. You could even make the move and ask for a quick coffee break to pick their brains and gain beneficial professional advice.
You’ll have a great social life
While you may be moving to London alone, you’ll never be truly on your own. Even if you’re a little on the reserved side, you’ll be sure to bump into people from all walks of life and get involved with a vast array of activities.
As the capital of the UK, London is bursting with all sorts of attractions from pubs and restaurants to museums, theatres, free comedy clubs, cinemas, and of course, iconic local sights including Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey and so much more.
Try and join local clubs to meet new friends or use apps to meet like-minded people looking for new pals. In no time at all, you could have formed lifetime friendships that will stick by you throughout the duration of your internship and beyond.
If you’re ready to experience an exciting personal and professional leap – consider applying for an internship in London. You won’t regret it!