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Graduates pledge to share innovation

Now that the summer term is well underway, university students across the country are embarking on the most important phase of their education to date: final exams. Amidst the revision cramming, many soon-to-be graduates will be asking themselves ‘what now?’

In this first instalment of a two-part blog, we’ll look to answer that question, by hearing from two of our recent recruits on the Saint-Gobain graduate scheme. First up is Beth Clarke, Customer Care Advisor at our East Leake Head Office, who joined us in August 2016.

The first piece of advice I would give to any university leaver is don’t panic if you’re not sure what to do next – even if you think you don’t want to pursue your degree subject as a career. I studied primary school education at university but by the time I graduated, I really couldn’t see myself following that career path. Fortunately, I was awarded a place on the Saint-Gobain graduate scheme and I haven’t looked back since.

Working for such a huge global business has really been eye opening. As I didn’t know that much about the construction industry before starting here, I hadn’t quite appreciated just how big Saint-Gobain is and how many different companies and brands are within the group. Recently, I had the chance to attend an event at the University of Warwick, which really illustrated the scale of the opportunities on offer and made me think ‘Wow, this is a massive company!’

Every year, Saint-Gobain organises a group-wide event to allow graduates from all of the different companies to come together for two days of training, networking and socialising. This was the first group-level event I had attended and I found it really inspiring. It was so interesting to hear from people in different businesses and operational areas and to listen to the experiences of colleagues that are further on in their careers – particularly hearing about how they have developed and progressed along the way.

Afterwards, my colleague Maisie Wright, Customer Service Advisor at our East Leake Head Office, and myself arranged to visit two of the other graduates we had met during the event. The aim was to get an insight into their businesses and see how they differ from British Gypsum. We travelled to Eggborough in North Yorkshire, to meet Alex Ward, who is a Plant Chemist at Celotex and Will Raune, who is a Management Trainee at Saint-Gobain Glass.

We toured both the Celotex and Saint-Gobain Glass plants and spent a lot of time discussing processes and sharing ideas. We learned so much from the day and have taken lots of things away with us that we can incorporate into our own business. We’re looking forward to returning the favour by hosting Alex and Will at East Leake soon.

For me, that really is the best thing about working for the Saint-Gobain group – there are so many people working in different departments, companies and countries that the prospects for learning and sharing ideas are never ending. So from not knowing what to do with myself after leaving university, I am now lucky enough to have a world of opportunity at my door.

To find out more about Beth’s career to date, including her experiences of the recruitment process, click here to read her Employee Story


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