Industry Led Programmes
Industry collaboration is at the heart of Salford Business School. We aim to ensure our students are learning the skills needed within industry, so that they are ready and qualified for a professional role. This is why we not only consult a wide range of industry professionals, but also put their words of wisdom into action by embedding their suggestions throughout our programmes.
We spoke to a range of business leaders who gave us amazing insight into what they are looking for. This is what they said and how we've woven their suggestions into our new range of business programmes.
The Importance of Soft Skills
“Soft skills – the communication, the listening, the team working - are really, really key. Graduates need to demonstrate how they’ve acquired some soft skills whether that’s been undertaking a project or demonstrating time management.” Vivine Cameron, Education Partnerships Executive, The Chartered Insurance Institute
Soft skills were at the centre of the conversation. Most of the business leaders we spoke to described a huge need for graduates who were comfortable communicating with all different types of people, working as a team, and presenting ideas. They explained that though graduates seem to have good knowledge of the subject, these skills are often seen to be lacking.
Because of this, we have included the practice of soft skills in our curriculum in all business courses. Modules such as Digital and Business Skills and Understanding Organisations, which are both core modules in the first year of all business courses, will help you to learn and master these skills in a supportive environment, preparing you for industry as well as improving employability prospects.
Ability to Present and Speak Confidently
“We’re looking for graduates who can use figures and graphs to tell a story, to put a narrative to information that you want to put across...The ability to present and stand up in front of people is something that is really really important" - Damien McCloud, Associate Director, Arup
"Capability of taking complex information or complex matters and making it comprehensible’" Vivine Cameron, Education Partnerships Executive, The Chartered Insurance Institute
Most of the industry professionals we spoke to talked about the importance of being able to convey ideas clearly and having the confidence to present to the team as well as clients.
This is a daunting skill to master, however a really important one. Throughout your years with us, you will have the opportunity to build confidence in your communication with others as well as speaking in front of a group and pitching. Though you will have a few timed assessments in the years you're with us, most of the assessments are coursework, project and/or presentation based, mirroring projects and deadlines seen in the professional world and again, helping you build your confidence in communication and public speaking. Most assessments will be individual, however you will also have a chance to build your team work skills through group assignments.
Your Personal Brand
"Graduates are coming out with similar qualifications. What we're looking for is what separates them and usually it's the individual themselves." Sámi Ben-Ali, Senior Strategic Resourcing Manager, Wood PLC
A couple of the professionals suggested that due to rise in graduates with good qualifications, it is more important than ever to set yourself apart from the crowd with other interests and experiences - a more well rounded person.
At Salford Business School, you have the chance to discover what you're really interested in, allowing you to try out different modules/courses to explore what you're really passionate about. This is achieved through optional short modules that are only worth a small amount of your final grade, meaning less academic pressure and a chance to just try out something without worrying it will affect your final mark. As all of our business courses cover core business skills, we also offer the option to swap courses at the end of your first year, allowing you more time to work out the basics of business before you commit to a pathway.
Our option to take a placement year is also a huge opportunity to grow your skills, knowledge and personal brand. Not only do you learn what it's like to be within a business environment, you will also improve your networking skills and build your connections, helping with employability after graduation.
The University of Salford also hosts the Business Society open to all business students; the society is a chance for you to meet new people on various different business courses, share ideas and learn from each other. As well as this, the Business School is also home to Launch - Salford's Business Incubator. Launch offers support to students wishing to set up their own business, putting theory into practice. This provides an amazing business experience and looks great on your CV.
By completing this discussion with industry and applying their knowledge and needs to our courses, it's Salford's aim to equip you with the relevant and requested industry skills, to provide you with competitive employability prospects when you graduate.