FAQ & HOW TO APPLY
01. What are the entry requirements for the scheme?
Depending on the programme you apply for, you’ll need at least either 280 or 300 UCAS points (not including General Studies).
If you’re applying from outside of the UK, we’ll need to check whether your grades convert to our minimum requirements. We’ll let you know either way.
02. Do I need a driving licence?
Yes – a lot of our roles mean travelling between sites and visiting various suppliers. If you have an international licence, you’ll need to convert this to a UK before you join us.
03. Do you accept international applicants? If so, do you provide sponsorship for work permits or visas?
If you’re from an EU country then you won’t need a work permit or visa. If you’re applying from outside of the EU, but are currently studying at a UK recognised University then it’s possible we can offer sponsorship for a work permit or visa – but this is not guaranteed. We look at each of these applications individually and make our decisions on a case-by-case basis. Please note we are unable to sponsor visas for the Sales Management Programme.
04. How many roles are you recruiting for?
Every year we recruit around 45-50 graduates
05. Can I apply for more than one scheme?
You can only apply for one of our programmes so you’ll need to look at them carefully and decide which of them is the best fit for you.
06. How can I apply for work experience, an internship or an industrial placement?
You can find more information on the placements and internships we offer Here.
07. When can I apply?
All of our graduate programmes open in August 2016 and close in December (although this deadline might be moved forward if we have enough strong applications before then –so the earlier you can make your application the better).
You can register your interest for our internships and industrial placements from August 2016 – although we won’t officially start accepting applications until October 2016. The internships and placements deadline is December 2016, however, this application window will close as soon places are filled, so we recommend applying early to avoid disappointment.
08. If I’m unsuccessful, can I apply again?
You’re very welcome to apply again but you’ll need to wait until we start recruiting for the following year’s intake. Try to think about the skills we’re looking for and how you might be able to develop or strengthen those skills in the meantime.
09. How long will it take me to apply for a position?
From receiving your application through to making an offer, the entire process will take around 60 days.
10. What address should I put down on my application form – home (permanent) or university address?
We recommend putting down your home permanent address. The only time we’re likely to write to you by letter is if you’re successful, and we need to send you a contract.
11. I am having technical issues with my application, who can I contact?
If you send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org one of our team will be able to help you out.
12. How do I return to the Mars online application form?
Just click here.
13. How will I know that you’ve received my application?
You’ll receive an email from our resourcing team to let you know that we’ve received your application. Be sure to check your junk email in case your our acknowledgment email has been sent there.
14. I thought I’d submitted my application, but haven’t heard from you. What’s happened?
First of all, make sure you’ve created a profile and submitted your application from that profile (creating a profile alone isn’t enough). If you’re still having trouble, contact email@example.com and we’ll be able to help.
15. Does Mars reimburse travel expenses? If I’ve lost my expense form, what should I do?
Yes we do up to a maximum limit of £75 – and if you need us to issue a new expenses form, just get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our resourcing team will help you. You’ll need to submit copies of your receipts, so make sure you hold on to them. We recommend you take photocopies of the receipts before sending us the originals.
16. How can I prepare for the interview?
You can get lots of information and guidance in our How to apply.
17. What does the assessment centre consist of? How long does it last? When will I find out the outcome?
You can get lots of information and guidance in our How to apply section.
18. When will I start work with Mars if successful?
If you’re joining us as a graduate, you’ll be starting on 4 September 2017. As an intern or placement student, you’ll start on 12 June 2017.
19. Can I defer for a year?
You can’t defer entry, but we do recruit graduates each year. This is through our graduate programmes and through direct entry, so you can always apply the following year, or once you’re back from your round-the-world travels, for example.
20. Do you provide relocation assistance?
We provide a £2,000 signing on bonus for new graduates, which is designed to help with your transition and moving costs. You can spend it on whatever you like though. This will be paid in your second week after joining by bank transfer and is grossed up for tax purposes – so you will receive the full £2000!
21. What are the average working hours as a graduate on the Mars programmes?
All our graduate roles are full time positions. This means that your average working week should be 37.5 hours. No one day is the same and work life balance is key for us here at Mars. You’ll have peaks and troughs in your workload, and it’s really up to you to manage your day. What’s key is that you deliver in your role – and you should always shout up if you have too much or too little work.
22. How do I rotate between roles on the graduate programmes? Can I choose what location I go to?
Flexibility is key on our programmes. Both from you and us. We’ll always support you to achieve your goals, and in return we expect you to have flexibility in the location(s) in which you’ll be based. Each programme has a key internal contact who will work with you during your placements to map out the next logical step. It’s always an individual conversation. Because you will have individual aspirations. The key message is that it will always be a two way conversation.
23. Will I have a permanent role at the end of the programme?
Yes all graduates will sign-off after their programme and move into a new permanent role. After that, where you go next will largely be driven by you.
24. Will I be offered the opportunity to work abroad as part of the Graduate Development Programme?
This depends on the programme you join – some of them include a European placement – and on the nature of your role. Either way, once you’ve finished your programme you’ll find there are all sorts of opportunities to work internationally. More than ever, our graduates are finding opportunities to work abroad with us when their programme comes to a close.
25. Are there any sports teams I can join at Mars?
Sports and social activities are the norm at Mars. And not just for graduates and students. Our entire associate population regularly gets involved in all sorts of activities – from after work football/rounders, charity fairs, volunteering and running clubs. Anything goes – as long as you can find some other people willing to join you!
26. I've completed an internship or placement year – do I get fast tracked on to the graduate programme?
This is a very real possibility – and really important to us at Mars. We will talk to you about your options during your time with us and we will work with you and your line manager to make sure we find the right route for you. If you choose to apply for one of our graduate programmes, we will organise an assessment for you before the end of your placement but you already have a great head start. Why? Because working for us for a sustained period of time and doing well says a lot.
27. ‘Where will I be based’?
As a graduate on one of our programmes, you’ll likely to spend time and focus on one of the below UK locations. We’ve given you an overview of them so you can understood more of each of them and their unique benefits!
Only 10 minutes outside of Leeds city centre, our Birstall location gives you the perfect balance between vibrant city living and access to the tranquil Peak District and Yorkshire Dales. The site is situated next to a retail park which comes in handy if you fancy eating out at lunch or doing a spot of shopping. A state of the art factory with a modern refurbished office and a friendly, fun and dynamic environment makes Birstall a really great place to work. This is the European hub for our Petcare Care & Treats business.
Based in the heart of Devon, Plymouth appeals to a wide variety of people. The Wrigley factory offers stunning views of Dartmoor, a fantastic national park to the East where herds of deer are a common site for associates. If you like the outdoors, whether its mountain biking on the moors or surfing the Cornish coast, there are plenty of opportunities for associates to get involved. If you enjoy the finer things in life, Plymouth has a great selection of restaurants and bars right on the water front.
At our Wrigley office, just a few stops from London Paddington, and with its own local train station, Theale, you can make a conscious choice to live in buzzing central London, or enjoy a relatively more laid back lifestyle in Maidenhead or Reading. Being a smaller office, you’ll be a close knit community with very real access to the leadership team. You will be working closely with Growth Centre – Wrigley UK’s own innovation hub, where some of the product design takes place. Of course, you’ll also have access to an endless supply of chewing gum, Skittles and Starburst!
Conveniently located on the M4 and just 20 minutes on the train to London Paddington, this is where it all began for Mars Chocolate in the UK back in 1932. Our biggest UK site (both the factory and office at the same location), you’ll get a real breadth of opportunities here. It is only a 5 minute train journey from the delights of Windsor and Eton and with easy access to the South coast. With lots of free chocolate and ice cream on site, be sure not to over-indulge!
Waltham on the Wolds and Melton Mowbray
Set in the idyllic Leicestershire countryside, our Waltham campus allows you to work in a relaxed and peaceful environment – yet being only a short drive from the big student cities of Nottingham and Leicester. This is the UK Petcare and Food Headquarters, so you’re at the heart of the action. Just 10 minutes down the road from Waltham is our Petcare Factory in the quaint town of Melton Mowbray – home of the world famous Pork Pie. Best thing about both these locations – you can bring your dog to work!
HOW TO APPLY
Making Your Application Mean More
First things first, you can only apply to one of our programmes so you’ll need to have a think about which one is right for you. Of course, at the end of your programme, where you go next will be wide open but it’s important that you get off to a great start with us. That means deciding which programme is going to be the best fit – and whether you’re interested in a specialist path or a generalist one. Secondly, no matter what the deadline, we’ll close the programme earlier if we find enough of the right people. So the sooner you apply, the better!
If you’ve found a programme that you’re really interested in, you’re in the right place to start making your application. For those programmes that offer multiple location choices, be sure to take a look at our FAQs page which will highlight a bit more about each location and their unique benefits. Before you do that, here’s a bit of information about how everything works. Before you can make an application you must register and create a profile online.
So you’ve decided on a route, you’ve created a profile and you have registered your details. It’s time to commence your Mars journey. Once you click ‘Apply Now’ you will have to start demonstrating your skills and what it is that makes you want to become an associate at Mars. The stage will include three competency based questions which will enable you to show us that you have the kind of skills we’re looking for. Be ready to tell us why you want to work for us, and let us know about the activities you’re involved in outside of your studies. You’ll need to do all of this in one go, so make sure you have your CV (and anything else that might help you) to hand.
Next up is an online psychometric test that will look to assess your numerical or logical reasoning skills. You’ll be benchmarked against other graduates. Try going online to complete practice tests before you start.
You’ve caught our eye… At this point we want to speak to you, challenge you and throw you into the Mars environment. At the “first round” assessment, you’ll be asked to come and meet us face to face for an interview and technical exercise (for our Engineering and R&D schemes) or be invited to a telephone or live Skype interview (for our other schemes).
For your interview, think about the experiences you’ve had to date and the skills these have given you. On a general point, please be yourself. We see lots of candidates and can soon tell if you’re not being natural! Be honest, genuine and don’t tell us something because you think we want to hear it!
Great news – we saw something we liked and want to see you at our final round assessment day. At this point, you’re almost there but you still have work to do. During the day you will have a group exercise, a different case study and interview with senior Mars associates, and often our Directors will attend. This really shows the commitment our leadership teams have in bringing in the best talent to Mars.
Things for you to consider throughout the assessment process:
01 - If you get through Stage 3, you will be given feedback at least one week before you come along to one of our Stage 4 final assessment centres.
02 - We will pay reasonable expenses up to the value of £75 for Stage 3 and 4 assessments. Please get in contact if you feel you will exceed this.
03 - Keep the diary clear! If you get through the first round you will likely be invited to the final round assessment centre the following week.
04 - All decisions will be made within two working days.
05 - When coming along to the Stage 3 and 4 assessment centres, please bring along your passport (proof of right to work in UK) and proof that you are on track to attain or have attained a 2:1 at University.
06 - Who to contact? Email email@example.com or call us on 01635 279818.
07 - A reminder of the importance to apply early – we want to manage your expectations as assessment centre dates often fill up fast. We operate a first come first serve policy – be eager and respond quickly to avoid disappointment