A selection of popular graduate programmes

Grad schemes are aiming to attract the best and brightest talent


Applications for Lidl’s graduate management programme opens in September every year and offers exposure to all areas of the business, entrants spending time in store, in the warehouses and at head office.

The company said it will be looking to hire people for many different areas of the business and is actively seeking suitable candidates that will join the teams in administration, central services, commercial and retail operations.

The programme consists of several modules, with participants receiving a bespoke training plan based on their career path and current skills.

Applying to the programme is simple; graduates selected to interview will complete a straightforward interview process with the chance to present to directors.

The programme offers a base salary of €37,500 per annum. Individuals on the programme can also expect to be able to work remotely two days per week for those in office-based positions.

For retail operations graduates, the role is onsite full-time, due to them being fully operational and located in our stores.

Web: jobs.lidl.ie/students-graduates


One of largest professional services firms, KPMG intends to recruit 450 graduates across its Dublin, Belfast, Cork and Galway offices for the upcoming grad programme cohort.

The company said it is looking to attract graduates from a wide range of disciplines, with a particular emphasis on business graduates, including accounting, finance, commerce and STEM students, given the wide range of clients the company works with.

The company said they are also seeking graduates from sustainability and arts disciplines who have an interest in a career in business.

The company began hybrid working a number of weeks ago, with staff now having a mix of home, office and client sites to work from.

There is an online application form on the KPMG careers website, where graduates are asked to include academic results information, career motivation, achievements and interests.

The programme will open for applications in early September and the closing date is mid-October. Interviews will commence late October and early November. Typically we hire students who are in their last year of study, and they join us post-graduation.

The company said it hasn’t yet determined the salaries for the new graduates yet, as it carries out a survey of the market each autumn and decides on the salary then.

Web: home.kpmg/ie/en/home/insights/2021/12/careers-2022.html


Around 400 new graduates will be hired as part of PwC’s graduate programee, across its three lines of service: advisory, tax and assurance.

The company is hiring across all disciplines, stating whether you are a science, technology, economics, business, engineering, law or accounting graduate, we are looking for enthusiastic, intellectually curious, agile and ambitious graduates to join the team.

The programme is flexible in terms of how employees work, enabling participants to flex their start and finish times as well as work locations so that they can work from a blend of office, home or client sites.

Applicants apply online, and are then selected for an interview. Applications close on Monday 9th of October 2022 for all Advisory applications and Wednesday, 12 October 2022 for Tax and Assurance applications.

The company says it offers a “total reward” package, including paid study leave, flexible working arrangements, private health insurance allowance, an in-building gym and a wellness programme.

Web: pwc.ie/careers-ie/graduate-programme.html


The Irish Management Institute’s (IMI) graduate programme is slightly different from most others in the sector, in that it is delivered on a consortium basis, bringing graduates from different organisations and sectors together.

This allows graduates to meet and network with peers in a variety of industries and companies.

Participants on the programme come from a range of disciplines, including retail, technology, food, financial services, construction, telecommunications and the public sector.

IMI delivered the programme virtually throughout the pandemic, and the 2022/23 programme will be delivered in a blended format.

The programme runs over 16 months and is structured on a modular basis, emphasising key areas such as personal development, active learning and professionalisation.

One of the key learning areas is developing commercial acumen, leadership and people skills needed in the workplace - particularly around problem solving, critical thinking, communications, and working in teams.

Web: imi.ie/product/graduate-development-programmes/


Accenture offers graduate programmes in analytics, consulting and technology.

Along with a competitive market value salary, graduates are provided with ongoing training, mentorship and live project experience.

The programme also offers benefits such as private healthcare, paid overtime, generous annual leave, paid volunteering days annually, external studies support, study leave and a pension option with company contributions.

The application process is three pronged. It includes gamified online challenges using augmented reality, virtual assessments, collaborative project work and interviews.

Applications for the 2023 programme will open in early Autumn and will include opportunities for those who wish to start at Accenture in early spring.

Web: accenture.com/ie-en/careers/local/grad-application


The company hires from all academic disciplines, with area managers having the opportunity to engage in hybrid working for part of their working week.

The only requisite for application eligibility is that the candidate is on track to attain, or has attained, a grade of 2:1 or higher, but the company’s graduate cohort represents a broad representation of disciplines studied.

The number of people hired onto the graduate area manager programme can vary from year to year based on the requirements of the business. However, the company would usually recruit six to eight area managers per year.

The application process consists of an online application, including an online psychometric test and video application. Successful candidates then progress to a group interview and thereafter a regional managing director interview and a regional director interview.

The starting salary is €65,000 and graduates will also get a fully expensed company car (BMW 3 series), a company phone and company laptop.

Web: aldirecruitment.ie


Datapac’s graduate programme is split into two streams: ICT professional and software development and ICT sales and professional development.

The company intends to hire between 15 and 20 new candidates to this year’s programme, on which mentorship, guidance and training as part of a team environment will be inherent.

The roles will initially be office-based in the company’s headquarters in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford to allow this mentorship to be carried out in person, the company said.

As part of the company’s 2022 graduate programme, participants will be hired from a range of disciplines including sales and marketing, software and applications development, information technology, computer science, information technology management and general business

The firm said it will be accepting two cohorts of applicants this year, with deadlines of tJne 30th and September 30th respectively.

Web: www.datapac.com


Deloitte’s 2023 graduate programme will open again in September, for positions in the following Autumn, across all areas of the business.

Around 400 graduates will be taken onto the the 2023 programme, with additional new graduate opportunities in tax and audit starting in 2022.

The firm offers a variety of roles including accounting/finance, tax consulting, technology, and a range of specialised areas including sustainability, cyber and legal, among others.

Operating on a hybrid strategy, employees choose how they work across client sites, offices and at home, and this is a policy across each of its offices in Dublin, Limerick, Galway, Cork and Belfast.

Following the application form, the candidates can learn more about what it’s like to work at Deloitte through an untimed immersive online assessment, which also gives the candidates a personalised strengths feedback report.

Applications for most areas will close on October 12th, but we recommend applicants to apply as early as possible.

The company says it offers a competitive total reward and benefits packages, including wellbeing, healthcare, pension, leave, and a comprehensive programme of support for professional qualifications (if applicable), as well as the flexibility around our hybrid working model.

Web: www2.deloitte.com


EY’s graduate programme has a range of fields to which graduates can be hired, such as tax, assurance, consulting, technology consulting, strategy and transactions and data analytics.

The firm intends to hire over 400 graduates, from all disciplines and backgrounds. The company says it is seeking people with core transferable skills such as problem solving, resilience, creative thinking and proactivity.

The programmes will be centred on flexibility, teaming, agility, safety and technology, with staff now routinely working from a variety of locations such as EY offices, client sites and from home.

The application process is simple, with prospective candidates being required to submit an application form, along with a CV for the programme.

Applications for the 2023 EY Graduate Programme will open this coming September, with a deadline of Wednesday, October 12th.

In addition to what the company describes as a competitive salary, it also offers a private health insurance package, a pension scheme, and a free gym membership.

Web: www.ey.com


Jameson’s international graduate programme is seeking to hire between 10 and 15 graduates for the upcoming year.

Irish Distillers are seeking graduates who want to build a career in marketing but the recruitment is focused more on attitude, rather than area of study. Applicants from all disciplines are accepted.

The role of brand ambassadors is not a typical 9 to 5 job and is 80 per cent field based and 20 per cent office based.

It is an initial 13-month offering which typically includes a three to four week induction training programme followed by a 12-month market placement.

After this initial 12-month placement, graduates can rotate to a new market for an additional 12-months, which can be extended up to 24-months.

There are two parts to the application process: an online written application which is supported by a 2-minute video application. Applications for the 2023/24 programme will open in October and close in February 2023.

Web: www.jamesongraduateprogramme.com


Approximately 70 graduates will join ESB’s graduate development programme in September 2022, who will take up positions across the group.

The company has also started offering graduate placements throughout the year for specialised roles in some of our generating stations in Ireland and Britain.

The utility will be hiring for a range of disciplines including engineering, commercial, HR, marketing, finance and IT.

All graduates will work under the company’s smart working hybrid model which seeks to ensure remote and hybrid working will become a sustainable part of the business.

The full details of our application process will be announced in September 2022. In previous years, this has included an initial online application and assessments followed by interviews, including a presentation or case study.

Applications for the 2023 programme will open in September. Successful applicants will receive a competitive rewards package and access to a number of staff supports including a medical insurance scheme, sports and social activities.

Web: www.esb.ie/careers

Shauna Bowers

Shauna Bowers

Shauna Bowers is a reporter for The Irish Times