It’s that time of the year again when graduates are frantically panicking, writing essays and revising for exams. Soon it will all be over and a new gaggle of students will be unleashed on the job market.
I remember that moment when I finished my Sociology degree and thought to myself “what do I do now?”
Whilst I was in university I hadn’t really given the topic of work much thought. Then before I knew it I had completed my last exam and after the brief relief that exams were over, came a wave of realisation, I had no idea what I was going to do!
With rising graduate unemployment, it is becoming harder for graduates to make their mark. But don’t worry, with the right steps in place, a successful career could be just around the corner.
Choose Your Target Carefully
When applying for jobs it is important to choose your target carefully. It’s really easy to succumb to the temptation to apply for every job in sight. Resist this temptation and you could be on to a winner.
Choose the jobs to apply for based on your experience and skills. Once you find a position that fits your skills and experience, take the time to perfect your application. The more effort you put into each application, the more chance you will have of getting a job!
Do You Have the Right Experience?
This is a crucial question to ask. Some graduate positions look for specific experience, whereas others are happy to take someone on with a good academic record that is aware of their transferable skills. If you are unsure what your transferable skills are, click here for a list to get you thinking.
If you find you don’t have the right experience, now would be the perfect time to get some. You could work shadow or volunteer to get that much-needed experience that will help you to get your foot in the door!
Get Your CV in Order
If you haven’t done so already, you will need to develop a strong CV that is tailored to the role that you are going for. It needs to show the experience that you have and you need to provide evidence for the skills that you include. Use the job description and person specification as a guide to developing your CV to enable the employer to quickly see why you are the right person for the job.
We’ve all heard it before, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know”; and in many cases this can be true. Keep in touch with everyone off your course, people who you did your placement for, tutors, and just about anyone in your industry that you’ve met. Don’t forget to let everyone know what you are looking for, and remember – some of your family members may know people who can help you out!
In addition to the traditional networking techniques, there is a new weapon to add to your arsenal – social media! Make sure you tailor your online social media presence towards the industry that you would like to get into. If you haven’t already, develop a LinkedIn profile as this can be a great way to reach out to employers.
Join LinkedIn groups that relate to your interest area and get involved with discussions. This can help to boost your presence and give you the opportunity to talk to people who are already on the inside! Remember, don’t be scared to ask for advice. You often find that people like to help, or at least enjoy giving their ‘two penneth.’