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Debut: graduate jobs & advice

Careers & insight for students

Manchester at a glance

In the famous words of Stone Roses’ lead singer, Ian Brown: “Manchester’s got everything except a beach.” So if you’re looking for a myriad of employment opportunities, a vibrant culture, affordable cost of living and a good dose of edginess, then Manchester is the place for you.

Yes it may be a bit drizzly and it’s not big on greenery, but Manchester offers so much for someone seeking an exciting place to live and work after graduation. And there’s no shortage of places to go for a curry.

Area guide to Manchester

Manchester can’t be put into a one-size-fits-all box, and the different areas of the city centre can attest to this. You’ve got the Northern Quarter, full of independent bars, cafes, boutiques and more nestled amongst winging streets and alleyways. Then there’s Chorlton to the south; again home to quirky bars and a bohemian vibe. And don’t forget Ancoats, full of street art, studios and theatre spaces.

Oxford Road is home to the universities and student haunts, while Spinningfields – to the west – houses the financial and professional services district. The Millennium Quarter is home to plenty of popular brands and The Village is the heart of the LGBTQ+ community in Manchester.

Universities in Manchester

There are a number of universities and higher education colleges in Manchester, including:


Employers in Manchester

There’s a whole host of employers from various sectors to be found in Manchester. MediaCity is home to the BBC and ITV, so for anyone interested in a career in broadcast media you couldn’t be in a better place. Virgin Media’s Manchester office is also one of its busiest hubs and is an exciting and dynamic place to work. It’s also home to the company’s training programme.

If you’re more of the sciencey type then there’s Manchester Science Park, home to over 120 innovative businesses. Google, KPMG, Deloitte, Barclays, Network Rail, Siemens and more have also built up a presence in the city, so there’s also plenty of choice when it comes to finance, tech, digital and engineering jobs, too.

Manchester by Sector

Just like the other major cities in the UK, Manchester’s success is down to a number of sectors. Historically an industrial city, Manchester now boasts thriving business and finance, energy and environment, creative, digital and manufacturing sectors.

Energy & environment

Did you know Manchester is home to one of the largest low-carbon sectors in the UK? Yeah – us neither. There are specialists in nuclear and power transmission and distribution to be found in the city, alongside many others seeking to trial and innovate new low-carbon technologies. The city is in fact looking to invest around £8 million in decarbonisation within the next few years – so there will be plenty of new opportunities popping up within the industry.


We’ve already mentioned Manchester’s amazing MediaCity, where heavyweight broadcasters such as the BBC and ITV relocated a number of roles and opportunities out of London. The creative sectors are playing a huge role in building the city and region’s economy, which is having a huge ripple effect across the UK.


Another fun Manchester fact for you: the first commercially available general-purpose computer was sold to Manchester University in 1951. With great universities and higher education colleges, the city is home to both up-and-coming and well-established specialists in software development, data analytics, the Internet of Things, animation, gaming, e-commerce and more.

Cost of living in Manchester

It’ll come as no surprise that the cost of living in a Northern city like Manchester is far cheaper than the likes of London. You’ll be paying around £700 per month for a one bedroom flat in the city centre, or £550 per month or a similar space outside the city centre (compared to a cool £1,700 or £1,200 respectfully in London).

You’ll also save a significant amount on transport, with a monthly ticket costing you around £65 compared to £150 in the capital. You’re also looking at less than £4 a pint, vs. the capital’s average of £5+ – so all in all, it’s a dream for the money-savvy student or graduate.

  • Accountancy/Professional Services
  • Engineering & Industrial
  • Law
  • Property and Construction
  • Technology


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