The Traineeship 2023

HarperCollins Publishers

Location London
Salary £26,250 bursary, 12 month fixed term training contract
  • Closing: 11:59pm, 25th Sep 2022 BST

Perks and benefits

Work from home option
Retirement benefits
Wellness programs
Employee Assistance Programme
Enhanced maternity and paternity leave
Extra holiday
Professional development
Paid volunteer days
Flexible benefits scheme
Cycle to work scheme

Candidate happiness

8.67 (25112)

Job Description

HarperCollins Traineeship 

 Stretching back over 200 years, HarperCollins is the second largest consumer book publisher in the world. We publish incredible authors including Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Alice Oseman, Jay Shetty, David Walliams, Elizabeth Day and Simu Liu. We are also home to bestselling series Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, Divergent, The Chronicles of Narnia and Virgin River as well as legendary characters Miss Marple, Winnie the Pooh, and Mr Men & Little Miss. 

Our Traineeship offers talented individuals from Black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds an opportunity to join the publishing industry and learn what it takes to turn an idea into a reality. Over 12 months you will get to work in different teams and support the journey from manuscript to bookshelf. You do not need a degree or any publishing experience.

When you join the programme, you’ll get to

  • Work with teams including editorial, sales, marketing, PR, communications, design, audio & digital  

  • Meet everyone in our Executive Committee (that’s what we call our board of directors) 

  • Visit our distribution centre in Glasgow, which sends out 1.3 million books a week, and the printers we work with

  • Learn about every area of our business through our insight sessions – what makes an editor acquire a book, how we design our book covers, how we promote our books etc. 

  • Have a buddy and mentor from day one who will support you through your time here 

  • Exclusive access to our Author and Design Academy Masterclasses taught by HarperCollins experts and partners from the wider publishing industry

  • Attend book launch parties, London Book Fair, author talks, and events in our building 

  • AND you’ll get free book proofs (the early copies issued before publication date), access to 8 free audio/e-books every week and a 60% discount on all HC books 

 Our application process 

  • You’ll need to complete a short online application 

  • There will be a virtual assessment day for longlisted candidates in October 2022

  • Then there will be an in-person assessment day for shortlisted candidates where you will meet our Executive Committee. (We can reimburse travel for those travelling from outside Greater London/the South East)

  • Successful candidates will be selected to join the Traineeship in January 2023

  • Candidates who score highly at our in-person assessment day, but are not selected for the programme, will be added to our pipeline where you get prioritised for new entry-level roles – last year we were so impressed with the candidates we recruited 10 more people into jobs across the business

We are aiming to inform all final candidates whether or not they have been selected for the traineeship or pipeline in mid to late November 2022. 

If you are selected you will be based in our London Bridge office at least two days a week, starting in January 2023. You will be paid a training bursary of £26,250 per annum and get access to lots of great perks and benefits.  

We are committed to increasing the diversity of our teams to better represent all our readers. One way we are doing this is through the Traineeship which actively brings in talented individuals from Black, Asian and ethnic minority groups who continue to be underrepresented in Publishing. You can learn more about diversity and inclusion at HarperCollins here.

 To see if this programme is for you please check our eligibility criteria below. If you are not eligible for this programme please look at our entry-level roles or internships here. If you are interested in learning more about publishing we will be hosting our next virtual days in 2023.

 Is this scheme for you? 

  • You must be over 18

  • You do not need a degree  

  • You do not need publishing experience 

  • You must have the right to work in the UK

  • You must be from one of the following ethnic groups:

o   Asian or Asian British: Indian, Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Chinese, Any other Asian background

o   Black, Black British, Caribbean or African: Caribbean, African, Any other Black, Black British, or Caribbean background

o   Mixed or multiple ethnic groups: White and Black Caribbean, White and Black African, White and Asian, Any other Mixed or multiple ethnic background

o   Other ethnic group: Arab, Any other ethnic group

o   White: Roma Gypsy or Irish Traveller


Please note we cannot accept applications from any other White ethnic groups as the UK Publishing Workforce Report (2021) shows that there is no underrepresentation of those groups in the publishing sector.

Financial support

  • The Spare Room Project aims to help, by matching interns and job seekers from outside London with people in the book industry who live in the capital and who can offer them a place to stay. The Project also helps people who have job interviews in London.

  • The Book Trade Charity offers financial support to people looking to enter the book trade but who may struggle to afford the costs of attending interviews and undertaking internships or entry level positions.

  • We offer travel loans to all new entry-level starters and will reimburse travel expenses for those travelling to our in-person assessment day outside of London and the South-East

Reasonable adjustments 

We want to make the application process as fair as possible and will accommodate as much as we can. If you require any changes to the process in order to help you to be successful in your job application please contact

Find out more about asking for adjustments at interview here


Removing bias from the hiring process

Applications are not yet open


Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the anonymous review

Applications are not yet open