Completing university and looking ahead to your new graduate career can be a hugely exciting time. However, it can also be an extremely challenging one! Each year millions of students graduate. Many have fantastic qualifications and no doubt some will be as enthusiastic and passionate as yourself. This means the competition for the best jobs could be fierce.
6 Tips for Kick-Starting Your Graduate Career
To help you get ahead of the competition and kick-start your sparkling new career, follow these crucial job-hunting tips:
- Narrow down what you really want
- Be realistic in your expectations
- Know yourself, your skills and your value
- Make use of online tools
- Make yourself memorable by having a point of view and find solutions to problems that nobody else knew existed
Narrow Down What You Really Want From Your Future Career
It’s very easy to get hung up about a specific sector or type of job. But in doing so, you may forget about transferrable skills and the value of other kinds of experience. In losing sight of the bigger picture like this, you may never find the right position.
Instead, work out what is most important to you. Whether it’s money or job satisfaction, the chance to gain work experience or excellent promotion prospects?
Insight days are a great way to experience what working life is like within a big company. In addition, they provide a fantastic opportunity to learn about different career paths which might be available to you.
Be Realistic In Your Expectations
For high achievers, attaining a 2:1 or above, graduate jobs can get your career off to a flying start. Many blue-chip companies offer graduate schemes which provide a variety of invaluable work experience within a large corporation.
Not every graduate can waltz into their dream job straight away. In fact, research suggests that only around 50% of graduates actually get a graduate-level job.
So before you start searching the job boards, you might need to lower your expectations slightly. There will be plenty of time in future to gain experience. This, in turn, will open doors for you to work your way up (or sideways). Eventually, this will lead you to find your ideal career path at the right company.
Career networking is the ideal way to get the job you want. In fact, word of mouth is how many companies fill positions without advertising. Attending as many networking events you can, enables you to seize every opportunity to make new contacts. Many students do this in advance of graduating to help them get ahead of the curve.
Once you have a few years’ experience in your chosen field, piggybacking on a reputable recruiter’s network connections is effortless. Upon leaving university, it is rare to possess both knowledge and skills as a fresh graduate. Recruiters might still be able to help you though; As long as you have something tangible to back up your education. For example, if you have an online portfolio or a website, recruiters may be very keen to work with you.
Know Yourself, Your Skills And Your Value
You’ll need to be brutally honest to assess your skills, goals, personal ethos and personality. But it’s essential to understand this to know if you might fit into a company before you go for an interview. Once you know yourself and your value, you can make a more convincing pitch to prospective employers.
Make Use Of Online Tools To Do Your Homework
In today’s digital age, there’s no excuse for not being fully briefed before attending an interview. It is expected that you will research a company’s background, ethos and culture.
Apart from appearing knowledgable during the interview. How can you know you want to work for a business if you don’t know this information?
It’s now a lot easier to research companies and individuals ahead of an interview. Social media tools such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook are great tools to use alongside company websites. Between them you can find out every scrap of information you can about a business.
Be Memorable By Having A Point Of View Find Solutions To Problems No-One Knew Existed
The way to stand out from other graduates vying for the same position as you is to make yourself memorable. Be remembered for the right reasons by having a clear point of view and stance. Find solutions to problems that no one knew existed. This way you’ll impress by appearing pro-active, a problem solver and a valuable member of the team.
Once your final year of university is over, you will be competing with thousands of newly qualified graduates. It is therefore imperative that you find some way to ensure your job application stands out from the crowd.
The above are just six tips you can use to kick-start your graduate career. Using any one of them is likely to improve your chances of getting hired. Using all of them in combo could go a long way to giving you a competitive advantage! We hope that reading this article has given you a few ideas of ways to get ahead of your competition.
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