Employer Case Study: University of Exeter Library

Name of Organisation: University of Exeter, University Library

Name of Employer: Philip Barraclough

Job Title: Library Digital Content Administrator

Internship Scheme used: Graduate Business Partnership (GBP) , 


“Having a Graduate Business Partner as part of our team meant that we were able to capitalise on their youth and enthusiasm. They brought a fresh perspective to our work, as well as the insights into student life and behaviour that come with having so recently been a student themselves. Their enthusiasm for all areas of Library work enabled them to complete routine tasks which allowed more senior staff to concentrate on designing and developing services and resources. But at the same time, our Graduate Business Partner was involved in these same discussions and contributed interesting insights and perspectives. Much of the Library’s social media activity this year has only been made possible the excellent and enthusiastic work of our Graduate Business Partner. Similarly, we have only been able to expand our accessibility guidance and provision by recruiting a Graduate Business Partner who was already familiar with this area and willing to collaborate with other Library staff to develop this. Whilst we may not be able to further expand this guidance and activity once our Graduate Business Partner leaves us, nevertheless without them we wouldn’t even have been able to make a start.

Apart from confidently independently managing their own day-to-day tasks to free up the workload of managers to concentrate on managing things, the e-book guidance webpage and library accessibility webpage on our library website only exist thanks to the hard work and contribution of our Graduate Business Partner. Similarly the increased social media content the library is posting each week is also a major achievement of our Graduate Business Partner. Finally, our Graduate Business Partner authored a blog post that was hosted on the Study Zone blog, something we have struggled to achieve in the past. They have lots of rather visible achievements to show for their time with us!

Overall, I would say the experience of having a Graduate Business Partner has been excellent and I would have regretted not recruiting one in hindsight. The only downside is that we were not able to make their contract permanent! Otherwise, I would have loved to have kept them on as a permanent Library staff member. The experience has been so positive that I certainly consider recruiting other Graduate Business Partners in the future with a view to hopefully retaining them as a permanent Library staff member.”