Back in June, we announced the opening of our new Innovation Centre in Reading. It forms a ‘center of excellence’ that is integral to our ambitious growth strategy for the next 18 months as we look to develop further solutions that meet the integrated risk management requirements of the market. Upon opening, the first 2018/2019 graduate intake was onboarded. Last week, we welcomed the second group to the Center.
Why is the Graduate Program necessary?
The harsh truth is that GRC expertise in the market is limited. We’re constantly on the lookout for new talent, but we recognize that competition for senior consultants is fierce. And the reality is that education isn’t offering up the candidates needed. There are very few degrees in GRC, and we’re yet to find anyone leaving school with the ambition to be a GRC consultant – most people wouldn’t even know it’s a career choice.
Therefore, if we’re to continue growing at our current rate, we need to help the market address its skills gap. Our Graduate Program is forward-thinking, focused on developing new talent to bring those much needed GRC expertise into the market for the long-term.
Education vs. apprenticeships
We have identified that many undergraduate degrees in more traditional subjects leave graduates without a great opportunity to start a career in a modern workplace. The great thing about GRC is that it has a place in every department, in every organization, in every sector, so it provides a new graduate with a fantastic opportunity to gain transferable, and highly lucrative skills.
Furthermore, GRC is constantly changing as technology and society evolve. It means there’s no one right answer and lots of problem-solving so every day is different. And there’s plenty of opportunities to make a difference to organizations and see your work having an impact.
The perfect career choice for STEM graduates
Although we offer cloud-based software, the technical side of the SureCloud Platform is configuration not code. It means we don’t necessarily need graduates with a specific computing background. Instead, we focus on those with a background in STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), who have demonstrated they have a natural interest in problem-solving.
We believe STEM graduates have the highest potential and bring with them new and different thinking. Even within the Graduate Program selection process, participating in the interviews is fascinating. We ask candidates to give a presentation on anything they desire – we’ve had presentations on Hogwarts, rubber ducks, what makes fizzy goes flat – and it’s amazing to see their thought process at play, as well as the new things you learn about the world we live in.
What the Graduate Program comprises
Our Graduate Program lasts two years. It starts with an intensive four weeks of classroom-based learning, where we teach the technical details about the platform, project/change management and the various topics within the GRC domain.
Graduates then begin to take on certain aspects of client projects but under the guidance of technical authorities and project managers. In the second year, they move into making some technical and project decisions with mentoring and support available.
Over the course of the two years, we will also host a number of ‘lunch and learn’ sessions, where our graduates will be educated on the wider market and competitive situations, so they have the context of where GRC sits, as well as the specifics on our platform.
Alex Hollis, GRC Practice Director, commented: “We’ve opened the Innovation Centre and want to fill it with creative, problem-solving minds, both for our own products but also for specific client configuration and projects. Our company culture is really important, which is why we’re hired against our core behaviors and during our induction, the new graduates are taken through what they mean to us. Furthermore, the Centre is conducive to teamwork and personal thought, with plenty of areas to socialize, rooms in which to collaborate and roof gardens for when you need space to reflect.”