Finding a job after graduation can seem like a daunting task. You’ve spent all of this time studying and learning – not to mention, for many, the heavy HECS debt hanging over your head – and now you’re expected to head out into the world and find yourself a job.
Unfortunately, simply holding a degree isn’t enough to distinguish you from the mass of other new graduates.
Six tips that might just help you stand out from the crowd
- Tailor your resume and cover letter for every job application
Knowing how to tailor your resume can mean the difference between a good resume and a great resume. It may time consuming and tedious to alter your resume and cover letter every time you want to submit an application, but it’s a sure way to improve your chances of getting the job.
- Even if the position’s different, it doesn’t mean you don’t have the skills
Some graduates fall into the trap of thinking narrowly when applying for jobs in their field – believing that they are only qualified for one position or role. What they don’t seem to consider is that many skills are transferrable and, even if your degree is really occupation specific like nursing or teaching, you can usually think more broadly about what kind of jobs you’re searching and applying for – which may lead you down a completely different career path.
- Don’t let a lack of experience deter you
Most organisations recognise that new graduates often don’t have a lot of previous experience. Therefore, you shouldn’t let a lack of experience deter you from applying for a job. As long as you believe you meet the essential job criteria, some companies will be willing to take you on despite having little or no experience. Don’t discount the importance of having experience in different fields such as retail or hospitality –these jobs foster great communication and teamwork skills and show you aren’t afraid to work hard.
- Volunteering and internships look great on your resume
Volunteering or interning with a company in your field can be a great way to gain valuable experience while you’re at uni. Plus you can put this on your resume. Some Curtin degrees require their students to complete a certain amount of work experience before graduation, which can give students an advantage when job hunting. If, however, your degree doesn’t have a work placement unit, it’s still a good idea to take the initiative and complete some work placements on your own before you graduate. This valuable experience will help you respond to any ‘demonstrated experience’ selection criteria requirements. Head to career sites such as UniHub to find internships and volunteering opportunities – investing your time now may payoff in the long run.
- Have a social media presence
Having a social media presence has become important for professionals in many fields. Many creative professionals need to embrace sites like Instagram and Pinterest to showcase their work. For other professions, it’s simply a matter of being visible online. It’s a good idea to at least be active on LinkedIn.
- Take control of your social media presence
If you do use social media – check your security settings. Having a public social media account can be either advantageous or potentially damaging to your career prospects. Potential employers will often look through your social media profiles before hiring you. It’s a good idea to make your social accounts private – and to ensure that your profile pictures are more tasteful than a party-mode selfie.
If you’re a Curtin student and you’re looking for some more advice about finding degree related employment after graduation, you can access our services up to a year after you graduate.