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Tips for graduates looking for their first job

By Elliot Bowman

tips-for-graduates

Being a graduate can be tough. Let’s be honest. You’re probably aware of the increasing challenges that are presented at this end of the market due to the ever-growing competition you’re facing. It can take a lot of resilience and determination to secure the role you’re after. And in some cases, it may not be the role you originally had your eyes set on, but it may be an opportunity to grow and develop important skills. 

There are a number of ways to give yourself the best chance of securing the role that you want. Here are some tips and advice to improve your job hunting as a graduate:

4 tips for graduates from our recruitment consultants

1. Become more commercially aware 

  • It’s important to understand what’s going on in the industry you want to work in. Being able to draw upon examples of current trends and issues will demonstrate your understanding of the space and show how you can contribute to the sector.

  • Knowing the market you want to work in shows you’re interested and have taken the initiative to understand the space, and also allows you to direct your job search to an area that is right for you.

  • Understanding your industry will allow you to provide more meaningful and relevant examples on your resume and in interviews that draw upon the skills you have obtained thus far. 

2. Building ‘soft skills’ that are transferable 

  • Although the jobs you’ve done whilst completing university may not necessarily provide you with industry experience, it’s important to build ‘soft skills’ that are transferable to the role that you’re applying for. 

  • Recruiters and hiring managers are always looking for people who could be the right ‘fit’ for a role, with a balance of core competencies such as communication, interpersonal and stakeholder management skills, along with traits such as attitude and business or social intelligence. 

  • Let your personality show and provide context as to how you will be the right fit for the role to stand out from the pack. 

3. Resume preparation and best selling yourself 

  • There is no right or wrong when it comes to the length of your resume. Ideally around 2 pages is a good length to really outline your role, responsibilities, and key achievements. Download our resume template to ensure you are using a professional layout that is easy to read.

  • It is pivotal you highlight the success you’ve had in any previous roles as it provides potential employers an insight into your skills and whether you will be a suitable fit for the role. 

  • Highlighting any KPIs or specific results you achieved and showing how you contributed to business success is a great way to sell yourself to the employer. 

4. Gain exposure to the industry

  • In addition to understanding the market, it’s a good idea to undertake some work experience in the industry to gain more direction and exposure to the area you want to work in.

  • Consider different ways to gain experience, like working in recruitment!

  • Working in the industry is a great foot in the door that can help you build connections, acquire on-the-job skills, and open up opportunities for a seamless transition into the graduate career you want. 

Check out our latest job opportunities or register your resume by creating a job seeker profile.