Banking Leadership graduate programme

Our two year Banking Leadership programme is a structured development programme.  You’ll develop key leadership skills and competencies and gain knowledge and experience through a series of placements across our business.  We want our future leaders to have a broad understanding of our Bank and we’ve designed our programme to offer exactly that.  Join our Banking Leadership graduate programme and you’ll  spend time within our customer operations, product areas and support functions including Finance, Audit, HR, IT or Risk.  You’ll discover teams you didn’t know existed. And you’ll find the leadership role that suits you. 

A leadership role in banking

Going from team to team on rotational placements, you’ll get to see how we work and what makes us tick. You’ll support our customer operations and make sure we deliver the very best experience. You’ll help us to develop brand new products. Not only will you learn all about our process improvement techniques – you’ll put them into action.  You’ll also have the opportunity to broaden your technical skills through placements in our support functions.  By the end of the programme you will be ready to move into your future leadership role.

Your placements

Placements will vary depending on business needs at the time as well as being tailored to your areas of interest.  Each placement is designed to develop your commercial and strategic thinking, negotiation and influencing skills and understanding of how our Bank works.

Fantastic support

We’ll be with you every step of the journey. You’ll have access to all the support you need, but the ultimate responsibility for shaping your development will be yours.  You’ll be supported by a mentor. And you’ll always be able to turn to our friendly and professional team for help and advice and tap into hundreds of years of combined banking experience. You’ll even have your own personal development plan that brings together technical training and personal and professional learning to help you grow your skills and gain the Financial Service Level 6 Apprenticeship (Associate Chartered Banker). It’s the complete package.

Are you made of the right stuff?

Innovative and both customer and commercially focussed, you should have a good head for figures and the ability to build strong working relationships with colleagues across the Bank. Ready to take on real responsibility from day one, your drive and analytical thinking will enable you to solve all kinds of problems and see projects through from start to finish. Above all you must be passionate about looking at things differently to shape the future of banking.

Our Bank is committed to continuing to create a diverse workforce and an inclusive environment where all colleagues can fulfil their potential. We welcome applications from talented individuals from all backgrounds and lifestyles who can work with us in maintaining a culture of belonging, where people are valued and respected. 




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I chose to apply to the Co‑operative Bank because I was eager to work for an employer which celebrated and encouraged diversity, created a comfortable and empowering workplace culture and stood by its ethics in every part of its work. The Co‑operative Bank offers so much to the local community, local and international charities and to its customers and is unique in pioneering its customer-led ethical policy. The Banking Leadership programme itself offers so much flexibility and allows me to have a say in what I learn and gain experience in what I am interested in.

My experience so far at the Co‑operative Bank has been extremely positive.  Having exposure to senior leaders at such an early stage in my career is invaluable and something that you would not get on other graduate programmes. I am looking forward to discovering and working with different areas of the bank in the future and shaping the rest of my career at the Co‑operative Bank.

Sophie McHale, Graduate






The great thing about the Banking Leadership scheme is that you get a lot of freedom to choose where you go on your placements and what areas of the Bank you would like to gain experience during your programme.

My current audit placement touches every part of our business and has given me the opportunity to meet and build relationships with people across the Bank, providing great exposure and the opportunity to raise my profile. I just feel like I’ve been getting a really good professional experience.

Joe Sowerby Thomas, Graduate


The Graduate community is an excellent way to build relationships across multiple departments within the Bank. I consider the Bank to be a close knit community where it is easy to speak to people from different teams, who are always willing to help. This level of support should not be overlooked and working with like-minded people who want to make a difference was an important factor for joining.

Nicol Tam, Graduate


The Co‑operative Bank aims to develop and challenge you whilst also giving you a great support network. My second project meant I was in weekly contact with the CEO and the Executive team - you don't get that kind of exposure at some of the larger banks. It was difficult but the support I had really made me feel empowered and it was very rewarding. The first thing I noticed about the Bank is how friendly everyone is; no one is unwilling to help you learn and develop and that really helped me settle in fast. Because of that I felt empowered to use my voice and now some of the contributions I have made are having a positive impact on the Bank.

Bethany Hardy, Graduate

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