Graduating college is a significant achievement, which only a few people manage to experience, and the real test begins when they start to struggle to find jobs. You might have heard of previous college graduates who were toppers in their batch not being able to get their ideal job and settling for something less. With more than 1 in 5 college graduates working in a non-degree demanding job ten years after graduating, the statistics are alarming. However, don’t worry; these steps will help you prepare for the highly competitive job market and identify your goals in college so that you can start working on them.
1. Start planning early
You need to start thinking about what your ideal job is well before your about to graduate college. But don’t worry if you haven’t decided what you want from your career, you shouldn’t panic. As many people don’t end up pursuing their chosen jobs straightway, hence it may take some time to figure out what career is right for you. But it’s better to start learning about the kind of responsibilities your chosen role entails and start building up on your commercial awareness. As once you understand what a typical day looks like in your chosen industry, you can be in a better place to determine the kind of job you want.
2. Apply for internships in your chosen career
By doing an internship, you can gain experience in your chosen career path and learn more about the practical aspects of this industry. Some internships provide you the opportunity to rotate around multiple roles and departments, whereas others are more focused on a particular role and category. Along with these benefits, an internship offers you a great opportunity to network with people in your industry, giving you a chance to expand your professional network. Also, since 70% of the jobs are not formally advertised so while building your network, it is important to stay in touch with your network during college for opportunities.
3. Gain as much experience as possible during college
Although internships are a great way to learn about your industry, they are not the only ones. Use your network to reach out to people from college; this could be through college alumni, connections on LinkedIn, and headhunters as well. You can ask them about apprenticeships and other entry-level schemes, and depending on whether you’ve worked with them, ask for a recommendation too.
Not only will this provide you with an opportunity to get hands-on experience in your chosen career, but it also provides you a greater understanding of what job is right for you and what skills are required to succeed in these roles. By having access to training and mentoring opportunities, you can quickly climb the ladder towards more advanced roles with more benefits.
4. Remember your long term goals.
Don’t be a perfectionist when it comes to starting your professional career. Instead, look for employers and jobs that develop your skills and provide you with more options to progress in the future. During your job search, you will come to realize that some jobs have a better pay scale but do not provide training and skills development relevant to your industry.
Don’t be disheartened if your first employer is not the right choice for you. Instead, be ready to work hard, start looking for jobs while paying attention to your long term goals. Mapping out your long-term goals is important for many reasons. Firstly, to figure out whether your personality is a good fit for the company culture, it helps determine whether your ambitions are realistic, and are you passionate about working in this organization.
Our platform Opportunities circle provides a range of resources and jobs for college students to make informed career choices. Ranging from internships to graduate schemes to competitions in targeted industries, you can filter options according to your needs and requirements.
5. Find your ideal job
It turns out you’ve graduated from college and are still not sure about the kind of job you want to do, don’t apply for graduate schemes just because your peers are doing so. Instead, utilize this time to research roles that are relevant to your industry and align with your long term goals. When you figure out this, your passion for pursuing this job will be evident to recruiters as well, and you have more chances of securing that job when you’re enthusiastic about it. For more career-related advice, visit Career Guide.
I am very excited.