What to think about when starting your job search?
How do you start searching for jobs? When should you start looking for jobs in the final year of your degree? How can you make yourself more employable? Where can you start your job search? We answer key questions below for students at university who are thinking about their next steps into employment.
How do you start searching for jobs?
There are many places where you can start your job hunt whilst at university. A first place to look should be at your university careers centre, where they will have advice on where to start looking and information on upcoming graduate recruitment fairs that the university might be hosting. These events are great places to speak to multi-national companies about the types of graduate schemes they have and find out more about what appeals to you. You can ask questions to find out what they are looking for in their applicants and what the application process entails. There are many graduate recruitment websites that you can find with jobs advertised and tips about how to develop your cv and application.
When should you start looking for jobs? In the final year of your degree?
In four words, as early as possible! You should hit the final of your degree course with a plan to start your job hunt. Make sure you have your cv prepared and add any valuable summer internships to it. Get everything ready so when graduate schemes open, you can apply early. Prepare yourself in advance for interviews. Many interview are competency based and they want examples of how you have demonstrated a skill. Think of examples of your skills and what you have done using the STAR technique:
How can you make yourself more employable?
What do employers want? Graduate employability skills include wanting people with strong communication skills, people who can make decisions, IT proficiency, those who have leadership qualities, people who can work well in teams (there is no I in teams!) and employees who are able to manage their time effectively. Graduate recruitment schemes will look for people with these skills as well as well as seeking the top academic graduates. It is a combination of skills that will make you employable. How can you show a prospective employer that you have these skills? Most will look for ‘competency’ examples of how you demonstrated these skills either in an internship or perhaps during your academic studies. Make sure you think about examples and include them using the STAR approach in your application where relevant, and also be prepared to answer using examples in your job interview.