Marking the end of my university life was the Graduation ceremony that took place a few days ago. Over the past few years I have taken part in a lot of different schemes from Student Ambassador to the Study Abroad & Industrial placement scheme. By some huge amount of luck I managed to get a job strait out of university, in fact it was only a few weeks after my final exam that I started at Miniclip. Of course, I applied to quite a few different places before I got offered the job in quite a few different types of companies. I thought it might be useful to share some basic tips that helped me along the way.
1. Have a good CV
Obvious right? Well not really, I’m often baffled by what some people pass off as ‘good’. Before you do any applications go through your CV and read it! give it to a friend to read, or even better send it to the Kingston University Careers Team to have a look over. While reading it, ask yourself these simple questions:
- Does it make sense?
- Are there any grammatical errors?
- Are there any spelling errors?
- Does it look professional? (ie. NO clip art, word art, page borders etc)
- Is the information actually relevant?
- If you were the employer, would the CV get you interested?
I’ve seen quite a few CV’s for various reasons and some of them have had me rolling on the floor, simply because they couldn’t be bothered to read through it before giving it to employers. It all really comes down to this; Why should someone give you a job if you can’t be bothered to check it through? Like me I’m sure there’s not much you can put on a CV that isn’t university work, but a good way to make your CV stand out is to do more than just the course, become a Student Ambassador for example or do a placement – it all helps your chances.
2. Use monster.com
Kingston University offers help when looking for jobs but don’t rely on it and expect everything to be done for you. Putting my CV on monster.com was the reason I found out about the job at Miniclip, you will get called by lots of recruitment agencies but it’s a mutual relationship, you want a job and they want a position filled. It’s worth doing even if there isn’t a job you want up there at first – give it a few days / a week and there will be, they are always being added.
3. Many Eggs != One Basket
Just because you’ve applied for a few jobs doesn’t mean that’s it, apply for more – and keep applying, the more interviews you get the more chance there is of you getting further. It’s easy to pin all your hopes on a few applications, but applying for more even if it’s a few every night will improve your chances significantly.
4. Do Your Research
Research is your friend – even thought it might not be fun. Don’t go into an interview with no idea what the company does, it’s always a good idea to research as much as you can before just in case you get a question that catches you out. Use Wikipedia, the company’s website or Google to find out more information, including latest news and basic facts about employee numbers / market sectors / new products etc.