Congratulations! you’ve just become a Graduate and are now looking embarking on one of the most important aspects of your career. However, a number of your peers may have already begun to prepare for this transition from academia to corporate or career ladder even before their final Graduate year.
Whatever stage you are at, do not despair. Time is on your side and you can create dramatic interest by thinking carefully and strategically on how you can start your career.
The Early Graduates
You may have already had some insight to what it will be like to compete against many other Graduates applicants with similar skills and experience which has led you to form relationships with companies and industry organisations, you may have sought out a mentor to give you guidance and help make connections to the right hiring managers, recruiters or even access to ‘back door’ applications.
– Try speaking with Graduate Human Resource departments to create early interest in your potential availability, this can work especially well if you have achieved academic excellence, distinction or merit.
– Attend Graduate Career Fairs; deliver your CV. Follow up by name. Arrange a meeting at their office. If you can do this you will be within the one or two percent of all Graduate jobseekers that have this ability.
– Engage the CEO, CTO, Director, or the most senior person within the organisation you want to work for. Demonstrate to them your passion and raw potential. By this we mean, create a CV or letter which will knock their socks off! You don’t need to ask for a job outright but want to obtain their help, you may use flattery, or they may already be your hero, or what you strive to achieve to be. At this stage you have nothing to lose. Be brave and try to make a connection.
The Graduate Planner
The Graduate Planner is an individual who carefully plans their approach to employment; they have researched, evaluated and conclude a number of companies they will tender for employment. Not waiting for the company to advertise can give a distinct advantage especially with a tailored cover letter and well thought out CV.
Using social media is becoming more fruitful, the planning Graduate is likely to have a profile of Facebook and LinkedIN (especially LinkedIN) and has carefully ensured that they are mixing with the ‘right’ people dropping hints that they are looking for work after a successful period of study.
The planning Graduate is also well versed in physical networking and has made some connections to local businesses through academic projects; they have kept in touch with these business owners so now they have rock solid referees and business professionals to bounce ideas off. Having a business owner who is committed to your success would be like having a “ace” up your sleeve!
The Late Runner and Graduate Second Placer!
There are some Grad’s who are there for the moment, they take study, work and play in their stride taking opportunities when they present themselves or having an uncanny ability to be in the right time and right place through to the Graduates who seem to just miss out to opportunities.
The differential can be, surprisingly, quite slim between these types of individuals which can be attributed to some small changes in using time or money:
– CV presentation and ability to identify what the hiring manager is ‘really’ looking for.
– Interview ability including an ability to build rapport and ‘close’ a deal.
– Insightfulness to gain an advantage by using a CV writer, an interview coach,
– Knowing the company inside-out by considerable research and effort to give you a single advantage of being the most diligent and deserving applicant.
– Using online jobsites effectively and it’s well worth reading our other sections. There really is a right and wrong way to apply for jobs online.
If you have graduated and are yet to achieve career success then take action straight away, if you are truly passionate and dedicated to break into your sector you must start to evaluate what you are doing and why your job search is not working.
– Are you waiting for phone calls? Or pro-actively taking steps each week to find work (more than simply applying to adverts with the same CV)
– Are you getting a decline letter and not following this up to see why and how you can improve?
– Are you simply unsure of what to do.
If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions it may be time to re-consider your Graduate job seeking approach.