We are pleased to announce that the first three members of the Graduate Fog Employers Club are Royal Mail, Cancer Research UK and advertising firm J. Walter Thompson.

The nation’s postal service, a charity and an advertising firm probably aren’t the brands you’d expect to be first on board, but – hey – life is full of surprises. Like you, we’d wrongly assumed Royal Mail wouldn’t ‘get’ the Club (eek – sorry!). And the charity and advertising sectors are notorious users of unpaid interns, so we assumed they’d be out of the running too.

Happily, it seems we were mistaken on all three counts – and the more we learn about each organisation, the more impressed we are. Remarkably, the trio insist they are big fans of everything Graduate Fog has achieved since our launch in 2010, including our campaigns for paid internships, fair access to jobs, and a better relationship between employers and young job seekers. They are excited to join a Club which allows them to stay at the forefront of the conversation about ‘good’ jobs for young people, and gives them instant access to a ready-made community of other companies doing great work in the early talent and careers space.

The trio happily signed up to our New Members Checklist, which includes clear instructions that members must pay their interns, recruit graduates from a wide variety of universities, and be working hard to improve their organisation’s diversity. In exchange, they will be invited to the Club’s Spring, Summer and Autumn events, and can use our special badge of honour to signal to young job seekers that their organisation is a great place to start your career.

If you still don’t believe us, here are some quotes from them. John Hynard, Royal Mail’s group talent manager, says they are proud to be one of the Club’s first members:

“We are delighted to be joining the Graduate Fog community and look forward to the opportunity of working alongside other forward-thinking organisations in providing support for today’s young job seekers.”

THE FULL PACKAGE: Royal Mail happily signed up to the Graduate Fog Employers Club’s new member checklist, which includes a promise that all interns are paid. Click the image to learn more about their graduate scheme

Cancer Research UK say joining the Club was an easy decision to make. Sarah Jepson-Jones, their head of talent and leadership development, says:

“Cancer Research UK are delighted to be joining the Graduate Fog Employers Club. We want to ensure our workforce reflects the diverse range of people impacted by cancer and are excited to be partnering with other forward facing organizations to ensure we are an inclusive employer.

“We’ve recently launched one of the first paid internship schemes in the charity sector to help us in our mission and will be actively exploring all we can to ensure people see the charity sector, and especially CRUK, as an attractive, vibrant and rewarding place to work.”

CHARITY BEGINS AT HOME: Cancer Research UK are the first big UK charity to make all their internships paid. Joining our Employers Club reinforces their commitment to diversity and fair access to jobs for young people

And Kate Bruges, UK and Europe director of learning and development at J. Walter Thompson, says:

“We are pleased to join the Graduate Fog Employers Club and happily sign up to the members’ checklist, which is a great idea. We are committed to doing everything we can to open up pathways to careers in our industry, level the playing field to remove bias in our selection processes, and increase our diversity.

“For many years, J. Walter Thompson has had a great reputation as the ‘university of advertising’ and the very best place to start a career in advertising. We believe diversity of ideas comes from diversity of talent so that’s essential for our business. Being part of the Graduate Fog Employers Club helps us connect with new graduate audiences and make sure we always have our finger on the pulse.”

AN ADVERT FOR FAIRNESS: One of the UK’s best-known ad firms, J. Walter Thompson, is proud to be the first of their sector to join our Club. Click the image to learn more about working at JWT

Needless to say, Graduate Fog is thrilled to have bagged three such high-calibre names as our first founder members. Tanya de Grunwald, Graduate Fog’s founder, says:

“A huge thank you to Royal Mail, Cancer Research UK and J. Walter Thompson for showing their support for young job seekers by joining the Graduate Fog Employers Club.

“For a long time, it seemed Graduate Fog and the UK’s employers would never be friends, but the campaign for fair internships showed us that collaborating with the UK’s fairest and most responsible employers is actually one of the most powerful tools for challenging and changing cultural norms.

“We look forward to working with all three organisations, to make the world of work a fairer and more welcoming place to young job seekers from all backgrounds.”

Many more well-known employers are in the process of signing up as Graduate Fog Employers Club members, so stay tuned for updates. In the meantime, regular readers of Graduate Fog will be pleased to hear that until they pull their socks up, Poundland, Capita, Conde Nast and Monocle will definitely not be invited to join the Club.



J. Walter Thompson’s innovative Future Pioneers Programme launches later this month for entry level candidates. If you’re keen to build a career in advertising it’s a great place to start, says their spokesperson Kate Bruges:

“We deliver multi-award winning graduate training, recognised by receiving our fifth industry IPA CPD Platinum award for sustained L&D [learning and development] excellence and a record 8 Gold IPA CPD Effectiveness awards. The future of communications is changing rapidly therefore we have designed a completely new approach to our entry level training.

“To be successful in the advertising industry now you need to have a broad understanding of all aspects of communication and develop the ability to work across a range of disciplines in a fluid way. So our Future Pioneers will spend 18 months training and working across four different specialisms: JWT London which will embrace advertising planning, account management and production; Prism, immersed in the world of sports sponsorship and event marketing; Mirum our digital specialists, and Colloquial who create and curate on line content for some of the biggest brands around.”

For more information about working at JWT click here

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