Saturday, 29 October 2016

FINDING A JOB AFTER UNI



Since I'm Graduating in a few weeks and I was lucky enough to secure a job straight after University, I thought it was about time that I shared with you my experiences of the job search and share with you my tips and tricks for this exciting but scary time in your life. Hopefully this might help some of you who've recently graduated and are still on the job hunt or will help some of you graduating next summer get prepared early!


The key thing I found when applying for jobs was to be organised. I know it sounds like a cliche but it's SO SO important! For me I needed to get a job as soon as possible because I had committed to moving in with my boyfriend and therefore needed the funds to pay my way in the new flat and be close to him and his job. It was extremely important for me to start searching early as I wanted to get my foot on the career ladder in the world of events and although it was very stressful, the searching paid off in the end!

The job search was by no means an easy task. Although I was lucky enough to secure my first graduate job before I'd officially left Uni, I definitely think I made a few mistakes along the way. People seem to forget that most graduates don't find a job until up to 6 months after they've finished uni. Some people might say that I rushed into the job search and should've taken my time, but for me, I knew what I wanted and I took it upon myself to search, search, search until I found my perfect first job! Since studying events at Uni, I always knew I wanted to work within a charity and I didn't quite realise just how hard it would be to not only find jobs within the charitable sector, but also get the interviews! I applied for so so so many jobs, like I mean definitely over 50! And I only got an interview for one which just so happened to be the perfect first job for me and I was lucky enough to be offered the job!



It's so important to give yourself the best chance possible by starting the search as soon as you can. I started applying for jobs whilst I was still studying. I made sure I made lists such as the type of sector within events that I wanted to work in, the area I was looking in, the salary I was hoping for etc. I also made sure I listed all of the companies I'd applied for but noting down the job title, key skills that were essential for the role, the area and the job salary so that I knew if a company rang me which job they were referring to. I must've applied for every job on indeed that I liked the sound of in the specific area I was looking in and there were numerous points during the search when I thought "I'm never going to find anything", but honestly, you just need to wait it out and stay positive!

I applied for jobs through a number of different sites, I used indeed the most - it was probably my favourite because you could save jobs you like the look of and it also saved all those you'd applied for too. I also liked using LinkedIn because I often found different jobs on that site and it was a great way to reach out to my connections and link with people in the companies that I valued and wanted to work for. LinkedIn is also great because you've got your own online portfolio. I always ensured that my LinkedIn was a more detailed version of my CV. I urge everyone to get themselves on LinkedIn if you haven't already - it's a very important tool for getting your foot in the door.

One thing that I think ended up getting me the job role I wanted was the fact I'd undertaken a placement year, that was not only relevant to the industry of events but was also relevant to the sector I was hoping to go into. I honestly think that's what got me the job - the previous experience I'd gained. This extra experience helped shape my CV and employers like to see that you've had industry experience. I also did a lot of unpaid charity work and relevant work experience which employers also highly valued because it shows your determination to work in that industry and proves skills such as multitasking and time management when I juggled a part-time job, university and work experience. I'd highly recommend you going to see the careers centre at your university too because they can help you look at your CV and covering letter to make it perfect. Remember to also tailor your CV and covering letter to each job application. This is important because you need to be able to show within your CV and covering letter that you possess the skills and knowledge required for the job. Another thing that I think made me stand out was having my blog on my CV. Not only was it kind of relevant for my industry and proved that I had gained new skills from having a blog, it is also a great conversation starter and makes you stand out amongst the crowd.

The most important thing is to stay positive! It will be hard, and you will get knocked back but it's important to keep trying. I applied for around 5 jobs a day whilst I had a spare bit of time - usually when I was watching TV, or in bed. I'd take that time to plan out the jobs I wanted to apply for the next day and then used a spare hour to get on with it. It really helped having a plan. It took me a while to get that all important interview and I got knocked down a few times, some companies got in contact to say I just didn't have enough experience and others said there were other candidates who had better knowledge of the sector than I did, but in the end I proved everyone wrong and got myself the job I wanted in a great charity working in a new city with great people - all in all a happy ending :)

So there we have it, there are my tips and advice (more like my little story) on finding a job after University. I've started an exciting chapter in my life and I'm getting more and more excited for my graduation at the beginning of November. I can't wait to celebrate my degree with all my favourite people and close a very happy but challenging chapter in my life. I've made friends that will last a lifetime and gained the knowledge and experience from excellent tutors that I know will help me in my new job and throughout future roles. Good Luck! You'll find your dream job in no time!



Have any of you got any tips for finding a job after finishing university? How long did it take you to find yours? Let me know down in the comments below. I'd love to know what industry you all work in. You all know a lot about me, but I don't find out about you lovely lot!

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