Melissa Hughes of Matalan’s Talent Team speaks to 2nd year Business School students.

As part of their work based learning and graduate enterprise modules, second year business school students attended a talk from Melissa Hughes, part of the recruitment team at Matalan PLC. The company, which has its head office in Skelmersdale, is one of the UK’s leading clothing and homewares retailers with over 200 stores.

Last year the company took 64 graduates last year in various roles and also provides a range of industrial and sandwich placements for current undergraduate students. Melissa spoke about industrial placements in a range of areas including finance, retail, merchandising and HRM. The scheme has been of great benefit to previous students who have gained valuable work experience and made useful industrial contacts. Furthermore, Melissa outlined the investment the company makes in its graduates via further training and the opportunity to undertake relevant professional qualifications.

Melissa also provided tips to the students about how to make their CVs standout and the ways in which a candidate can impress companies at the interview stage. Staff from the Edge Hill careers centre were also present to provide advice to students on the best ways to create a good first impression.

Every student undertaking the work based learning module must undertake at least 15 days of placement. The aim of the module is to ensure that students develop practical skills to complement their academic development and ensure that they have the best possible chance to stand out from other graduates. Graduate Enterprise students form their own companies and must create a product or service that they can sell for a profit. This is not a paper exercise and students form real companies that they register at Companies House.