Class of 2012? What now?
Last updated 28-Aug-12 14:29
If you graduated this year no doubt you have been scouring jobs sites and doing plenty of soul searching to work out what (and where) your ideal job is, and the career path you’d like to follow. But how do you make sure you are ready when you finally see it- the prefect job, at the perfect company, that you simply must have!?
In short it’s time to set your stall out.
It goes without saying that the days of generic CVs are gone. Every job you apply for needs a new CV that is highly tailored to the job description and/or job ad. So our advice is not to spend your time crafting the perfect CV now. Instead research your chosen industry to find out which traits, skills and experiences are valued then sit down and work out a) if you have these skills and b) how you can make sure future employers know you have these skills.
If you need to build up more skills and experience:
Don’t panic first of all. Knowing where you lack experience/skills means you can do something about it. You can volunteer, request work experience, look for internships or make your own opportunities. So for example, if you want to be a journalist but don’t have a portfolio of work you should get volunteering for a local paper or start your own online one. If you want to work in events get involved in some. There are loads of charities and voluntary organisations looking for people to help them with all sorts- finance and book keeping, web design, admin, marketing, fundraising (and not the standing outside with a clip board type of fundraising) events management, sales and so on. Get in touch with your local Voluntary Action group or Community Volunteering Service.
If you have the skills but need to showcase them:
You might associate LinkedIn, social media and blogs with the creative industries but if you put a bit of thought into it, it can really help you sell yourself whatever the industry. Say you want to work in engineering, you could have a blog about the latest technology and innovations. If you don’t like blogging then tweet about the subject. Then you can clearly evidence to employers that you are up to date and enthusiastic about the industry.
Start building up your LinkedIn connections now, make sure your skills are up to date, have links to past work and projects in the portfolio section and contribute to industry groups. We’re seeing a growth in the number of employers advertising jobs via their company profiles on social media so you need to follow, friend and connect to anyone you have your eye on for a job. Don’t just stick to the big three, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn either. If you can see a way to turn Viddy or Pinterest to your advantage do so.
Don’t waste time now painstakingly crafting your CV either. Instead start to compile evidence of both the transferrable and industry specific skills you have. And by evidence we mean throw away sentences like “I have good written and oral communication skills” or “I am able to work well in a team but am equally able to work on my own initiative.” You need to say where, when and how you got those skills and how that will help you in your chosen industry. What specifically do you bring to a team? Are you good for morale? Do you keep the team focused? How?
Once you have all your evidence all in one place and some great online profiles you are ready for when the dream job comes. You can read through the job description and person specification and pick out all the relevant evidence you have to make your CV amazing. Plus you can provide links to your social media presence as further evidence of your enthusiasm, proactive nature and industry knowledge too.
« Go back to Graduates blog
|Add a Comment|