Recruitment & HR

Ten years ago recruitment and HR positions were viewed as ‘stepping stones’ before securing a ‘professional’ job. However a lot has happened in the last few years to shed this image and today the recruitment and HR industry is one of the fastest growing amongst graduates boasting both financial rewards and job satisfaction.

What kind of work can I do?

Human resources and Recruitment are separate careers with related areas of work. Smaller companies who recruit in house may have a combined HR and Recruitment team.

The HR department are responsible for recruiting and retaining the best possible workforce. They make sure the moral of the office is high and handle any personal employee problems.

Recruitment roles may be either in-house (managing recruitment for a particular company) or in a consultancy (managing recruitment for a range of different clients). Executive recruitment consultancies typically operate in specialist areas sourcing candidates for senior appointments. They often approach individuals directly rather than advertising openly, hence the term ‘headhunting’, which is sometimes used to describe the role.

Typical Duties for HR and Recruitment include:

  • Recruitment and selection
  • Employee relations (handling employee rights, contracts and complaints)
  • Employment legislation
  • Performance appraisal
  • Compensation, including pay and benefits
  • Consultancy
  • Health and safety
  • Training and development
  • Advertising/marketing

What are employers looking for?

Employers needs and expectations differ from HR and recruitment roles. To work in HR you need to be a people person who can relate well to others. Good communication skills, patience and attention to detail are also vital.

Working in recruitment especially in competitive consultancies suits someone who is driven, confident, vigilant and doesn’t give up easily! 

Although a degree is not essential more and more employers are seeking graduates to fill these roles.


The career ladder in recruitment is vast, from becoming a head-hunter to owning your own recruitment company. The job also equips with lots of key skills that can open doors in many sale based roles.

Is this the right career for you?

If you are a confident, driven individual who is not put off by spending lots of time on the phone then yes! 

Hours can be long in recruitment, with demanding targets to hit but if you thrive in competitive workplaces then this could be the perfect career for you.


Key articles for graduates entering recruitment

Recruiters in this sector:

AdMore Recruitment

AdMore Recruitment is a specialist, award winning recruitment company with a supportive, strongly values-based culture.

Allegis Group

Recruitment at Allegis is a career, not just a job. Our selection criteria are high, but so are our rewards

Austin Fraser

We are Austin Fraser, an award-winning, international recruiting company with specialist consultants covering various industries globally.

Aylin White

Established in London in 2008, Aylin White is a successful property, engineering and construction recruitment consultancy with offices near to Moorgate and Liverpool Street Stations.


We are a leading UK and US Cyber Security Recruitment Business. Leveraging our long-held relationships, industry knowledge and data driven approach, we help candidates and clients make better hiring decisions.

Boss Professional Services

Boss Professional Services Ltd are an established recruitment consultancy based in Oval, London.

Cancer Research UK

Cancer Research UK is the world's leading independent charity dedicated to beating cancer through research. Our ambition is to accelerate progress and see three in four people surviving the disease by 2034.

CareerBite, enabling students to showcase their employability.


ExP exist to help you be successful in a sales career. We work with technology startups to help them find, train and coach graduates for their sales teams. We are a small, friendly company who have coaches who have been in sales roles in different tech businesses across the UK, Europe and the US, now focused on helping you find, and be successful in your first, and future sales roles!

Hydrogen Group

Hydrogen is a global specialist recruitment business, placing exceptional, hard to find candidates globally.

JPS Selection

JPS Selection are an international headhunt and search consultancy servicing the Software and Technology sector on a global scale.

Knowledge Exchange & Enterprise Network (KEEN)

The Knowledge Exchange & Enterprise Network (KEEN) is a graduate recruitment programme designed to give students a platform to launch their career

McCarthy & Stone

McCarthy & Stone are the UK's leading retirement housebuilder, we are at the forefront of our industry and over the last 40 + years we have built an enviable reputation for both our innovation and customer service.

Mountbatten Program

The Mountbatten Program was established in 1984 to connect top global businesses with the brightest young professionals.

Murray McIntosh

Murray McIntosh was launched in 2015, out of the belief that Recruitment should be about individual empowerment, not just making placements.

Nicoll Curtin

We are Nicoll Curtin, the award winning global Fintech & Change Recruitment agency, with the APSCo 2018 International Recruitment Company of the Year as the latest feather in our cap.

Opus Professional Services Group

Opus Professional Services Group are a global parent company to 5 recruitment brands.

Pareto Law

Pareto offer a unique alternative to traditional recruitment agencies, taking you on the full journey from application through to placement.


PatSnap is a global, hyper-growth, venture-backed start-up with offices in London, Beijing, Shanghai, Suzhou, Singapore, Toronto and LA. Our cloud-based software enables innovators to be more effective in their research and investment decisions and bring new inventions to market faster.


Picked is an online platform that uses powerful AI technology to match graduates with the best career opportunities in the UK.

Procurement Leaders

We are a multi award-winning business intelligence and networking company specialising in the area of procurement, sourcing and supply chain management.

Raising Recruitment

Raising LTD is an international recruitment company registered in UK and China. We work with top Chinese & British employers and Universities to provide a wide range of Work Opportunities, Internships and Graduate Programmes for any job seeker in the UK.

SF Group

SF Group focus on the Finance & Accountancy, Human Resources, Office Support, Engineering, Procurement & Supply Chain and Sales & Marketing divisions.

Smart Works

Smart Works is a UK charity that supports unemployed women into work

Solution Recruitment

Solution Recruitment is a leading multi-disciplinary technical recruitment agency.

Talent Transitions and Inspiring Talent Minds

Talent Transitions, Inspiring Talented Minds and Talent4Results have many years' experience working across a broad range of sectors, helping organisations to identify and develop talent.


TARGETjobs The best possible start to your career.

Teach In

We are leaders in the field of education recruitment. The Teach In mission is to play a part in the improvement of our education system.

The Big Choice

Connect young people with the right resources, the right advice and the right contacts.

The Royal Household

With the Royal Household, everyday jobs become exceptional.

TTM Healthcare

TTM Healthcare is a world-class, specialist, Irish-owned recruitment company placing candidates in the healthcare market across Ireland, Britain, Northern Ireland and the Middle East.


At Venquis you’re not just an employee, you’re an owner. We're co-owned. 100% of the equity is owned by our employees meaning that you can own a valuable slice of an award winning, fast growing and successful recruitment business.

Veritas Prime

Veritas Prime, based on our core values and principles, means “Truth and Excellence”. We are dedicated to providing clients with top tier consulting services in the Human Capital Management Technology space.

Write Stuff, The

The Write Stuff specialize in creating professional, individually tailored CVs.


Xchanging is one of the largest and fastest growing business process outsourcing firms in the world.