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‘Impact’ unveiled as new name of local government graduate scheme

‘Impact: The Local Government Graduate Programme’ is the new name for the successful scheme which has introduced thousands of talented graduates to the sector over two decades.

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‘Impact: The Local Government Graduate Programme’ is the new name for the successful scheme which has introduced thousands of talented graduates to the sector over two decades.

Chief executives, directors, and managers are among the programme’s many alumni, which has been praised by councils – many of whom have been established partners for years – for providing an invaluable source of high-quality candidates and fresh thinking to the workforce, paving the way for the next generation of local authority leaders.

Formerly known as the National Graduate Development Programme (NGDP), the rebrand is the first of its kind since it began more than 20 years ago and will help ‘future-proof’ the scheme, so that it can continue to attract the best and brightest into the local government workforce. 

While the flagship programme – recognised as a Times Top 100 graduate employer – has grown from strength to strength and regularly receives thousands of applications every year, research commissioned by the LGA revealed there was a need for a refresh in order to continue positioning it as a leading option for graduates. 

Previously, many candidates came across the programme when actively searching for it and from those already familiar with local government, potentially limiting the diversity and range of backgrounds of those who applied. 

The new name gives more clarity and immediately highlights the dual impact of the programme: the meaningful impact that graduates have on councils and communities as a result of taking part, but also the positive impact on their careers.

It also provides another chance to raise awareness and interest in the programme’s specialist streams, including the Finance stream which offers a tailored development pathway for graduates who want to pursue a career in public finance. 

The name change takes effect from today (25 June) and will be phased into all communications, ready for applications opening again for next year’s cohort at the beginning of October. 

Backed by a national marketing campaign, Impact involves a rigorous, multi-stage recruitment process which is wholly managed by the LGA. High-calibre candidates are selected to be interviewed by partnering councils, who have the final decision on which graduates they want to appoint, offering a wide candidate pool which would otherwise be difficult to access. 

The two-year programme sees councils take on graduates as Graduate Management Trainees, developing their skills across a variety of services by ensuring they complete a minimum of three placements and undertaking a prestigious learning and development programme and postgraduate qualification.

During their time on the programme, trainees could see themselves placed in high demand areas such as housing, social care, children’s services and regeneration, or given key roles in important transformation or bespoke cross-cutting projects.  

Cllr Abi Brown OBE, Chairman of the LGA’s Improvement and Innovation Board, said: “Impact sums up everything we believe about our incredibly successful and long-running graduate recruitment scheme for local government. 

“It highlights the effect of the programme on councils and the communities they serve, as well as on graduates themselves as they learn new skills and use them to improve vital local public services. 

“There has never been a more important time to work in local government and this refresh will continue to encourage high-quality candidates, from across the country and all backgrounds, to apply and find out what an Impact they can make on people’s everyday lives.” 

Notes to Editors 

To find out more about Impact and to apply, go to Impact: The Local Government Graduate Programme or email [email protected].