Supporting career development and employability of PhD researchers at KBS

Typically, the career paths of PhD researchers tend to branch into various directions:

  • employment in academia (e.g. post-doctoral research, lecturer)
  • employment in industry (e.g. financial modelers, management consultants, investment analysts)
  • employment in the public sector, charity and non-governmental sector (e.g. fund management, project management)
  • starting your own business

Below are some key employability resources to support your career planning and development.

On this pPhD Kentage:

  1. University of Kent – Graduate School (Postgraduate Research)
  2. Vitae
  3. Your PhD – What next?
  5. Starting your own business
  6. Personal consultations – appointments
  7. FREE online course starting 5 March 2018 (produced by top research universities)
    Career Management for Early Career Academic Researchers
  8. Improving your employability


Click on the blue headings or images to access resources below.

1. University of Kent – Graduate School

Graduate School website

All you need to know about making a success of your PhD at the University of Kent, comprising training opportunities for employability.

2. Vitae

vitae logo

Careers information tailored to academic researchers in the UK. Whether you want to pursue an academic career or apply your skills and knowledge outside of academia, this is one of the key starting points for advice and ideas.

For helpful tips about how to write an academic CV and examples, see

For tips about how to write an effective cover letter see


1.1. Researcher Career Stories

Browse over 150 career stories from researchers for inspiration.

PhD Kent group

3. Your PhD – What next?

A PhD offers the options of working either in academia or in industry/not for profit sector and any other careers that any other postgraduate course might offer.

If you wish to explore the academic route, click here. This information is provided by TargetPostgrad (TargetJobs), and includes career progression and potential earnings.

For more general information about any other postgraduate options, click here. 



Prospects PhD logo

This site is run by Graduate Prospects, one of the leading careers publishers in the UK. There are four key topics:

  • What jobs can I do with a PhD? (Career profiles of typical PhD jobs)
  • How do I get a non-academic job? (job hunting tips and Graduate Prospects jobs database)
  • How do I sell my PhD to employers? (Articulating the skills developed through your PhD)
  • What do other PhD graduates do? (Employment statistics and information)


For careers advice and job vacancies in academia and elsewhere.


5.Starting your own business

This link will take you to the section about starting your own business on this blog and some inspiring success stories from past KBS students.


6. Careers advice – personal appointments

Irena pixAt KBS, Irena Jennings, Lecturer in Careers and Employability, who is also a qualified and experienced careers practitioner, offers personal, free, confidential careers consultation appointments.

cesLocationIn addition you are entitled to careers appointments offered by the central Careers and Employability Service at the University of Kent.

Click here for details and link for getting an appointment.




7. Free MOOC (at FutureLearn)

Career Management for Early Academic Researchers

A new online course (MOOC) for research students and research staff has just opened for bookings. It aims to support researchers to explore their career options and make career plans.

Through a series of articles, videos, discussions, and reflective exercises, researchers will be encouraged to consider what they want out of a career; to explore the academic career path and many other career options; and to increase their confidence in job search and applications.

The MOOC is a collaboration between the University of Glasgow, University of Edinburgh, and University of Sheffield, and has been developed by careers professionals who are experienced in working with research students and research staff.

It’s a free online course and open to research students and early career research staff at any institution in the UK and beyond.

The first course will start on 5 March 2018 but for more information and sign up details go to:

8. Improving your employability skills

The following are suggestions to help you improve your employability.


Consider running a blog about your research. This will provide you with exposure and enhance your written communication skills. In addition, this will help you build an online presence. The following site will provide you with further inspiration:

The University of Kent has its own blog site – You will see many examples of blogs about a wide range of research. In particular, there’s a page for KBS research highlights.

However, many online research communities have been established, and perhaps one or two are of particular use for your research interest. Click here for links and suggestions.