Unlocked Graduates is a new organisation that offers top graduates and career changers a ground-breaking opportunity to work in prisons as officers for two years. During this time, participants will focus on breaking cycles of re-offending and giving second chances to those who lacked opportunities earlier in life, alongside completing a rigorous leadership development training programme. The skills they learn will propel them into leadership roles in a range of sectors when they complete the scheme. We want to see a country where prisons successfully rehabilitate, and reoffending rates are significantly lower.

Our mission

The aim of Unlocked Graduates is to break cycles of re-offending by developing outstanding individuals to lead rehabilitation in prisons and throughout society.

Unlocked Graduates seeks a: 

Recruitment Officer

Location: London

Full-time, permanent role

Salary: £25,000 - £27,000 dependent on experience


The role

We are looking for a dynamic and highly-motivated individual to join our Recruitment team. You will play an important role in attracting and selecting the highest quality applicants to work in prisons with Unlocked Graduates.

The Recruitment Officer is responsible for supporting the delivery of our recruitment strategy to attract high-calibre candidates to the role of a prison officer and guide them through all stages of the process: from initial attraction of applicants through university careers and off-campus events, to screening and assessing candidates and supporting them up until the point that they start the programme. As a young organisation, you will play a key role in building our brand and increasing awareness of this career opportunity for graduates. The position offers an exciting mix of hands-on attraction work, systems development, data analysis, stakeholder management, and wider input into the work of a start-up organisation.

If you’ve got what it takes to build an effective and high-profile organisation, you’ll join a charity with opportunities every day for new achievements and experiences.

Key accountabilities


  • -  Build our brand by running events and presentations, encouraging students and graduates to join Unlocked.
  • -  Manage relationships with key stakeholders at university careers services and with s tudent organis ations . This may incl ude attending and pres enting at external meetings and liaising and negotiating with stakeholders to support our recruitment goals.
  • -  Develop and deliver recruitment activities in order to maintain and grow a pipeline of high-quality applicants.
  • -  Ensure the Unlocked mission, values and messaging are consistently applied in a way that encourages high quality applications.
  • -  Ensure maintenance of detailed records and databases to continuously evaluate and improve the recruitment campaign.
  • -  Continuously reflect and evaluate success on campus to ensure we deliver value for money and effective use of resources.
  • -  Report on and evaluate the pipeline from your different university campuses.
  • -  Act as a relationship contact for successful participants, supporting them in the onboarding process up until they begin the programme.


  • -  Take a hands on role in screening applications and selecting candidates at assessment centres, in line with Unlocked Graduates’ competencies.
  • -  Support the co-ordination and processing of all aspects of the screening and assessment process.
  • -  Facilitate assessment days to provide a positive candidate experience.
  • -  Support the development of participant selection exercises and tools.
  • -  Contribute to training of internal and external assessors.
  • -  Deliver feedback calls to unsuccessful applicants.
  • -  Ensure recruitment practices are carried out consistently, efficiently and fairly to achieve a best practice selection process

Person specification

Knowledge & Experience

  • -  Strong belief and enthusiasm for Unlocked Graduates’ aims.
  • -  Knowledge of the graduate recruitment cycle and the processes it involves.
  • -  Experience of working with a range of stakeholders.
  • -  Experience of working within a university, recruitment or careers setting or directly with students or career switchers.
  • -  Experience of delivering to targets.
  • -  Project management experience of delivering projects with a clear goal.
  • -  Experience in the use of candidate management systems (desirable).
  • -  Understanding of the role of a prison officer (desirable).

Characteristics and skills

  • -  Exceptional interpersonal skills, with the ability to build strong relationships internally and externally.
  • -  Excellent written and verbal skills.
  • -  Strong collaboration and team-working skills with an ability to work well in a small team.
  • -  Sound analytical skills with the ability to make critical judgements and take decisions.
  • -  Capacity to use your initiative to overcome obstacles.
  • -  Positive and pro-active attitude.
  • -  Commitment to the goals and values of Unlocked.
  • -  Ability to work independently, with conflicting demands , in a high-pressured environment.
  • -  Flexible, highly-organised and able to prioritise work to meet deadlines.
  • -  A team player, who is willing to deliver practically on the ground and be hands -on.
  • -  Regularly evaluates own performance to build on strengths and identify areas to improve.

Other requirements

  • -  Right to work in the UK.
  • -  You will need to be committed to travelling to other regions and UK universities throughout the recruitment season. This may involve occasional evening events and weekend work.

How to apply

To apply, please send a CV and a letter of application explaining your interest in this post and how you meet the points in the person specification above. Please also give details of two referees and kindly complete the equal opportunities monitoring form attached.

Applications can be made by email. Applications should be sent to maria.donovan@unlockedgrads.org

If you would like to have an informal and confidential discussion about the role or about the process please contact hello@unlockedgrads.org.

Application Deadline: Tuesday 29th May

Interviews: w/c 4th or 11th June

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