Disclosure: I may earn a small commission from the companies or products mentioned in this post.
BrighterBox are a graduate recruitment service operating in London. They reckon London is the best place to move to post-graduation and have got 10 major reasons why.
Every year London becomes a magnet for hopeful graduates looking to build a successful career in the capital city. As many as 24% of graduates from UK universities in 2014 and 2015 moved to London, attracted by jobs, a fast-paced lifestyle and a city that appears to be aimed directly at young professionals. Somehow the extortionate rent prices are not a deterrent and as more hopefuls turn up on the doorstep of the Big Smoke, the city seems to adapt and change to accommodate them. Ever seen so many craft beer bars open in the last few years? London is the perfect city to move to after graduation and it keeps on getting better. Here are our top reasons why:
1. The Nightlife
You might be a graduate now, but you are (probably) still in your twenties. Don’t feel like you need to put the alcohol away just yet. The clubs and bars in London are infamous for great nights out, and while the cocktails might be pricier than the ones at your student union, they are also generally better quality (and come with those fancy garnishes). Pop-up bars appear and disappear almost constantly, so you can never get bored – the night scene is always changing and always dynamic.
2. The Jobs
Most graduates move to the capital for one main reason. The job prospects in London are far and above anything anywhere else in the UK and it is crammed full of head offices for all your favourite brands. If startups are the direction you want to head in, then you will stumble across more CEOs than you thought possible just by having coffee near Old Street station. The bottom line is that while competition is certainly tough (and you shouldn’t expect to walk into a graduate job just like that) you will be able to choose from a wide array of exciting and interesting companies to apply for.
3. The Diversity
London contains a multitude of different cultures and ethnicities, all combining to create a centre point of amazingly diverse neighbourhoods. This means that everything, from your food choices to your gig nights will be varied and that little bit more eye-opening. If you don’t have anyone to move in with initially, then getting a flat share is a great way to meet people and you are almost guaranteed to move in with a mixture of people from all kinds of backgrounds.
4. The Opportunities
Maybe you moved to London certain that you wanted to be an accountant and now you aren’t so sure. Luckily in London you can abandon accountancy and follow your true dream because of the sheer amount of opportunities available to you. If you want to retrain, then just pick a university; if you want to start a company, then just seek out the startup community; if want to travel, just get a cab to one of the five airports nearby.
5. The Other People
Outsiders seem to think that London and its inhabitants are cold and unfriendly. While there might be a few glares passed around on the tube, the majority of people in the capital are great. As a young professional, you will be part of a wider community of work hard/play hard types fully embracing the London lifestyle. Being a graduate in such a huge city might seem daunting, but be prepared to find yourself surrounded by people willing to make you feel welcome.
6. The Closeness
London is so densely populated with every kind of shop, restaurant, museum and bar you can think of, so if you wake up one day and suddenly decide you need a certain kind of lamp shade, then chances are you will be able to get dressed and head straight out and get it. Whilst it has great transport links, London is also undeniably a walking city. You are likely to find most things you might need on your doorstep, and if you must walk a little bit further then you are guaranteed to discover a few interesting corners of the city on your way.
7. The Cycling
While it might not be on a par with Copenhagen, London is certainly one of the UK’s best cities for cycling in. As a graduate, you will want to save money somewhere – cycling is perfect for cutting down on transport and gym costs. With cycle lanes stretching across most routes into the city, you are likely to be safer than you think and you will be in the company of thousands of other yellow jackets. If you aren’t ready to invest in a bike just yet, then grab a Santander bike for a few quid a day and try it out.
8. The Parks
If you come from the countryside originally and feel as though you can’t give up all that wide open green space, then rest assured London is famous for its parks. We aren’t talking about a scrubby patch full of weeds (although those charming spaces exist too), no, we’re talking about enormous expanses of bright green grass lined with well-kept trees. We’ll even throw in some wild deer if you are in the Richmond area. You can have all the benefits of a brush with nature and still ride the tube home – it’s the best of both worlds.
9. The Brunch Options
Graduates love brunch – that seems to be a concrete fact nowadays. London caters to the brunch crowd in fantastic new ways, branching out from greasy bacon sandwiches to all manner of different ways of eating avocado on sourdough. A quick google of ‘best brunch’ in your area will draw up multiple options, or if you are feeling particularly adventurous, why not opt for a bottomless brunch and drown your hangover in fresh alcohol?
10. The Coffee
This point might seem like an outlier, but it is based on the assumption that during your final year of uni you managed to get addicted to coffee. While your first graduate job is hopefully not going to be as nerve-wracking as the night before your dissertation is due in, it does require you to be on top form and ready to impress at the drop of a hat. Grab yourself a delicious cup-to-go from one of the many speciality coffee shops around the capital and you will be full of electricity and buzzing with energy by the time you get to work.
BrighterBox connects graduates with exciting jobs at startups in London. Check out their latest job opportunities here.