Improving your employability odds after university

There is an assumption that with a degree the working world will be your oyster; that any job you want will instantly be yours…

Now, while having a degree can certainly improve your employability odds, this doesn’t mean you’ll get the first job you apply for after you graduate. If anything, you will find yourself competing with equally talented individuals who’ve got the same qualifications as you.

So, what can you do? How can you enhance your chances of getting a job after you finish university?
We suggest adopting the following strategies:

  1. Continue your learning – there are many ways you can continue your learning. You could choose to enrol onto a Masters or PhD, or you could explore home study courses and use them to focus/specialise your skills;
  2. Distance learning in particular is a great way to add more skills/qualifications to your CV (while you’re working) because even if you don’t get the precise job you want initially, you can use home learning to build up your skill-set so you’re in a better position to apply for the job you really want later;
  3. Review your personal brand – your presence and how you behave on social media could be limiting your job searches, as this is the first place recruiters visit to gain a sense of who you are. This means, they could be dissuaded from employing you if you behave rudely or unprofessionally online i.e. make inappropriate comments.  Now, this doesn’t mean you have to stay in ‘work mode’ every time you’re online. However, you will need to consider your brand and ensure that you come across as someone who is respectful, trustworthy and employable. This includes being careful about what you say in comments and the images you post as what might appear as funny to you, might tarnish your image to an employer;
  4. Utilise online job sites – if you were to speak to recruiter’s, they would tell you that there is a shortage of professionals with the right skillset. As a result, sites have emerged that are focused purely on promoting CVs (a library of CVs) to help gain recruiters attention. Because of this emergence we strongly recommend that you make yourself visible on such sites, as they may open doors to jobs you didn’t even know you wanted. Simply post your CV into these libraries and you could find yourself getting more calls for interviews;
  5. Proactively communicate – the goal of recruitment agencies is to match the best candidates to the right posts because every time they make a successful match, they get a commission. This means you can trust that they’ll remain dedicated to helping you get a job as they want to fill this vacancy (boosting your chances of success). The only downside, is that they’ll also send you to interviews that are not entirely relevant to your qualifications, which could result in a lot of wasted time.  For this reason, make sure that you proactively communicate with recruiters and clearly tell them which jobs you’re interested in and which you’re not. This will save you from a lot of unwanted interviews;
  6. Write directly to recruiters – it can be tempting to copy and paste the same cover letter and personal statement to every job you apply for, as you want to apply to as many as possible. The problem with this is that it makes your application look standard as you’re adding nothing unique or identifiable.  Instead, we recommend that you tailor every letter and personal statement that you write based on the job and organisation. By proving that you’ve read the job description and have researched the values of their company; they will be more responsive to your application as it will show that you’re serious about the job;
  7. Network – sometimes who you know can influence your job opportunities, as they could potentially tell you about jobs that haven’t even been posted yet. The key to gaining access to this information is to make sure that you network wisely and establish connections with the right people. Do that and their recommendations could earn you an interview in the future;

Tips: attend networking events for your chosen field. Alternatively look for interning and volunteering opportunities. These will help you to get noticed by the right people.

As you can see, with a little prep and careful consideration, you can take your degree and use it to begin your journey to career success. For more information on our range of online courses, visit our website today.

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