Join the FT as a graduate trainee

About the FT Graduate Trainee Programme

The Financial Times Editorial department is opening its doors to four outstanding new trainees in 2016. The Financial Times graduate trainee programme is designed to recruit and train entry-level journalists – developing talented individuals who have the aptitude to forge a career in a fast-paced global editorial team. Alumni of this scheme are well represented in the senior staff of the FT and other news organisations around the world.

This year we are running two trainee schemes. You may only apply for one of the following options:

  • News reporter – applicants who have strong research and writing skills and a demonstrable interest in journalism.

  • Data journalist – applicants who have skills in a relevant field such as information design, statistics, cartography or web development and a demonstrable interest in applying these to journalism – i.e. telling a story through data.

All applicants must show that they can meet the challenge of working for one of the world’s top news organisations. That means a strong commitment to serious journalism, a competitive instinct, good academic qualifications and wide interests, particularly in global politics, economics and business. Language skills, in addition to fluent spoken and written English, are an advantage.

The Graduate Trainee Programme is not an internship or fellowship: it is a full-time entry-level contract as a Financial Times journalist. The deadline for applications is 10 January 2016.

News reporters

Successful applicants will join us in September 2016 and spend six weeks training, then take on a series of six-month assignments on key desks, possibly including one in an overseas bureau. Mentoring, feedback and further training are provided throughout.


Applicants must provide evidence of a clear, concise writing style by submitting an unpublished 500-word article or three-minute audio or video report on a subject of their choice. The story should demonstrate liveliness and originality; submissions will be judged on the choice of subject, quality of writing and primary research. If you have had stories published, please submit no more than five cuttings/links from papers or websites.

Data Journalists

What is an FT data journalist?

We are searching for tenacious investigators, keen storytellers, innovative researchers, organised thinkers and idea generators. Individuals who are eager and prepared to find new ways to use data, technology and engaging visual techniques to report, produce and present news. This programme is for story producers who want to get the story as well as those who want to tell it best.

Depending on your skills and interests, within your first year at the FT, you might be undertaking a major investigation by mining a huge dataset in R, telling a complex story by building an interactive game in D3, or producing a detailed GIS-based map .

Successful applicants will join us in September 2016 and spend six weeks training, then join the Interactive desk in the newsroom. Two to three month secondments to other sections of the FT may be arranged to broaden experience, introduce new skills and collaborate with other teams to produce innovative journalism. Mentoring, feedback and further training are provided throughout.


In addition to a desire to pursue a career in journalism, applicants will likely have some knowledge of a related field such as quantitative analysis in a social science discipline, data science, data journalism, information design, geospacial analysis, cartography or web development.

Applicants must demonstrate that they can apply these skills to online journalism by submitting a link to either: an otherwise unpublished web page that visually represents a news story, a Github repository showing an original news-related application they have developed, or a 500-word article or three-minute audio or video report, in which data analysis was integral to the reporting.

The link should demonstrate liveliness and originality; submissions will be judged on the choice of subjects, quality of research, and execution.


Graduate trainees join the FT on a one-year contract, extended for up to a further year at the discretion of the company.

Successful trainees are encouraged to apply for staff positions that become available towards the end of this time.


Applicants in their final year of studies, recent graduates or post-graduates in any discipline may apply. Or, anyone who can demonstrate the requisite skills to fulfil the criteria for the scheme. This scheme is not for professional journalists or anyone who has started training courses with other media organisations.

We encourage international applications. Visas may be a consideration for applicants who are not EU citizens or do not hold UK work authorisation. As such, please provide any relevant information that might support your application in this respect.

If you are in any doubt about your eligibility, or have any other questions, please contact

How to Apply

Please complete the online application form.

Applications must be submitted before 23:59 GMT on 10 January 2016.

If you have a query relating to the scheme please email

Equal Opportunities

The Financial Times welcomes applicants from diverse backgrounds. We employ people solely on the basis of their abilities.