Career insight days provide an opportunity to experience what it is like to work in a professional environment and learn about an organisation’s structure and culture. They tend to be found in corporate sectors, eg professional services, finance, banking or law.
Benefits of participating in an insight day
Many large organisations offer structured insight days, or weeks, typically aimed at first and/or second year students. These tend to take place over Easter or summer, and can go by different names, such as spring weeks (banking sector) or vacation schemes (legal sector).
Insight days can help you to:
- develop commercial awareness
- understand the culture of a particular organisation, which can help you tailor your applications for further experience or graduate jobs
- learn about different opportunities and roles within an organisation, to help you decide where your future career interests lie
- provide evidence of your motivation to work in the sector when applying for graduate jobs
- make contacts within the sector and potentially arrange further work experience where you can take a more practical role
Insight days don’t tend to be paid, as you’re not employed, or completing significant work for the organisation. However, they usually cover expenses such as travel and lunch. Opportunities which last a week or longer are more likely to offer payment.
What happens at an insight event?
The exact content of the insight day will vary depending on what the host wants to tell you about their organisation.
Some common elements to expect are:
- Introductions to their day-to-day business
- CV workshops and skills sessions
- Social and networking events to help you build contacts, ask questions directly of current staff
- Shadowing current trainees to learn more about the work they are doing
When to apply
Applications for insight days tend to open in September and some may still be available up to March. Opportunities with large companies can be competitive and will close early in some sectors, particularly banking.
Closing dates vary, but we would strongly advise you to apply as early as possible as vacancies become filled very quickly.
Finding Insight events:
- Events Calendar – can include insight days and events aimed at first and second year students
- MyCareerHub Strathclyde - search on Insight Days
- Rate My Placement – insight programmes for first year students, mostly in finance and law
- TARGETjobs - filter is set on "insights programmes"
- e4s: First year internships
Events to look out for
Recruitment fairs are not just for graduate jobs. Some employers at our events may also offer insights, so go along and find out more about their opportunities.
At our employer presentations, you can hear about the organisation, build your network and ask questions.
We also advertise a variety of employer events such as employer workshops, employer open days,
networking events and industry focussed events. These can include opportunities to find out about work experience.
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- Finance Directorate
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