Graduate Job Hunting

Life after university can be rather daunting. Suddenly, after years of education and the structure it provides, you are tasked with finding a job and navigating the world of work. It can be tough and a little tricky so here is a list of my top tips, tricks and things to consider when job hunting as a new graduate.

Mindset

Have a positive attitude and approach

Job hunting doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom. See it as a stepping stone to a new chapter in your life, filled yes with more responsibilities, but also more personal growth and fun.

You are not alone

You may feel all alone while searching for a graduate job, but there are thousands of other graduates in the same situation. Reach out to friends and family to let them know how you are doing, but also make time to do the things you enjoy.

Don’t compare yourself to friends or classmates

Everybody’s path to a graduate job is and will be different, so don’t be discouraged if it takes you a little longer to get on the career ladder.

Don’t take rejection personally

During your job hunt, it is likely you will face rejection but don’t let it define you. Although it will upset you, use the feedback you receive to improve your next application or interview.

Don’t be so fast to settle

If your first job isn’t your dream job that’s okay, but it’s important to have a job that aligns as close to your values, skills and interests otherwise you may not enjoy it as much.

Employability

To improve your employability while you are job searching, consider the following :

  • Volunteering
  • Going back to university to get a masters
  • Doing some work experience (I highly recommend the Forage)
  • Asking others to help you with your CV, LinkedIn profile and interview skills
  • Taking free and relevant online courses to help upskill (I recommend The Open University and FutureLearn)
  • Networking (You can do this by using social media, talking to former colleagues, university staff, and attending talks, career fairs, and workshops)

The Job Search

Narrow down what industry or sector you want to work in. You can do this by considering :

  • What roles interest and excite you  
  • Your current skill set, passions and experience
  • What type of working environment you’d like to be in
  • What modules or tasks you enjoyed during your degree
  • Make a list of things to consider when applying for a job

For example :

  • Salary expectation
  • Employee benefits
  • What the office/company culture is like
  • The size and reputation of the company
  • Opportunities for training and promotion
  • What their work/personal life balance is like
  • Its location and commute time/costs but also if it allows for remote work as well
  • Figure out how you’ll be job hunting

I recommend :

  • Recruitment agencies
  • Sending speculative applications
  • Using networking and industry contacts
  • Council websites and job boards such as LinkedIn and UOLCareers
  • Searching directly for vacancies on company websites that interest you
  • Create a routine and set realistic goals

Set aside a few hours a day to look for a job and apply for it. Applying for as many jobs as possible is sure to make you stressed and overwhelmed, as well as reduce the quality of your applications.

Make a log of all the applications and responses received

Keeping track of what you’re doing will help you remember important dates, such as deadlines and interviews.