6 Career Advice Tips New Graduates Need to Know

Many new graduates feel the pressure of kick-starting a career that will make their hard work and university worthwhile. While it’s natural to feel overwhelmed by the challenge of finding a graduate job, if you follow our advice below, you’ll be receiving job offers in no time.

1. Start by deciding what you want

As a new graduate, it’s easy to fall into the trap of starting your graduate job hunt before you pinpoint what you really want to do. While you may feel like lots of your friends have got it all figured out, and some may have secured graduate schemes months ago, there are plenty of graduates who are unsure about what to do next.

If you are unsure about what area you want to go into, think about what you’re good at, what motivates you and what you want to achieve in your career. If you’re completely stumped, we recommend taking a career personality test to help get you started. Once you have some career options that suit you and your ambitions you can conduct further research before narrowing down your choices.

With one or two options in mind, you’ll be in a much stronger position to start your job search.

2. Don’t neglect your cover letters

New graduates know how important it is to create an excellent CV, but some don’t put as much effort into their cover letters. It’s important to remember that every graduate submits a CV, but your cover letter is the perfect opportunity to make you stand out and put your personality across.

In order to make an impact with your cover letter, you should make the content relevant to the role you are applying for and show that you are the right person for the job. Ensure that it doesn’t contain any spelling or grammatical errors and talk about why the company appeals to you.

3. Do your research 

When it comes to finding a graduate job, you can’t do too much research. You should look at the company website you are applying for, follow them on social media, find out about their clients/customers and the industry they operate in. This information will help you to tailor your CV and show that you are enthusiastic at the interview.

4. Sell yourself, not your degree

While earning a degree is fantastic, it’s important to focus on the transferable skills you have learned while at university. Working to deadlines, delivering presentations, analysing research and problem solving are all great skills to include in your CV. Think about what skills the employer is looking for that you have and ensure these stand out in your CV.

5. Gain work experience

Completing work experience or an internship is a fantastic way to ensure you stand out in a highly competitive job market. This can certainly set you apart from your peers and while work experience may be hard to find, it’s worth the effort.

If you need help with finding work experience, we recommend speaking to your university careers department.

6. Network

Take every opportunity to network with people in your chosen field or industry. Look out for events put on by your university and speak to friends and family members to see if they have any connections they can introduce you to. Having the opportunity to speak to someone in your chosen field will help you to find out more about it and they may be able to put in a good word for you when you want to apply for a job or work experience.

Bringing it all together

Being a new graduate entering into the working world can be overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Follow our tips above, set yourself manageable goals and take things one step at a time and you’ll be starting your career before you know it.

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