Recent Graduates: How to Make your Job Search Successful 

Effective strategies are critical for your first job search, especially when you're a recent graduate with relatively little experience.

You may have a good indication of where you’re going to look for roles and what you’re going to apply for, but its equally important that you’re able to stay on top of all your job applications. 

 

From the first impression of seeing your CV, to the first discussion, you want to make a great impression on employers. Employers will call you out of the blue to discuss your application, and if you have no idea who they are or what the role is this won’t leave them with the best impression.

Successful job search strategies

Below are our top 5 tips on what you need to do to make your job search successful.

1. Make sure your CV is as strong as it can be 

For a comprehensive guide on building your CV please see our guide on building a strong CV, but going beyond this, when you want to apply for a role make sure you tailor your CV to the role. 

Triple check it for spelling, grammar, and consistency. as mistakes in these areas can be a big red flag. Something people don’t think about, is making sure your email address is professional (stay away from the teen one you made and don’t use your university email) as a silly one from years ago won’t seem as funny to an employer. 

Also, keep an eye that your socials are either private or entirely professional. Employers will search you and if there is inappropriate content often won’t get in touch. Always provide a tailored cover letter also, as this shows your engagement to the process.

Job search for graduates

Job search strategies 2022

2. Be conscientious of how you come across 

As mentioned above, employers will often call out of the blue to discuss your job application. In the first instance, make sure your voicemail is professional in case they are unable to get through. If you do receive a voicemail, call back quickly and don’t leave them hanging around for days, you will loose the opportunity. 

If you do pick up the phone, good manners go a long way. You’ll find if you communicate with employers and recruiters politely and gracefully, they will be far more likely to want to help you. Make sure your communication is consistently professional, even if you are unsuccessful with your application or don’t get past the interview stage, send a thank you note and don’t burn your bridges.

3. Stay organised

When you are applying for lots of roles, it can be tricky to stay on top of all applications and companies. Create a spreadsheet of your applications, including the company, the role and the date you applied, so if you are called you can refer to the roles you have applied to and seem knowledgeable. 

Adding the date you applied means you can follow up after a reasonable time and show the employer you are proactive. Create a separate email folder for emails from employers to make it easier to stay on top of. You can also have job alerts going in to this folder, which means as soon as role comes up which fits your criteria, you’ll hear about it and have the opportunity to be one of the first to apply.

Job search tips for graduates

4. Do your research 

Thoroughly research all of the companies you’re applying for roles with. This will ensure that you are only progressing applications with companies of interest and aren’t wasting your time. Make sure you pay particular attention to their culture, and that is in line with your beliefs and what you’re looking for.
 
If you’re using a recruitment company to look for roles you can ask them to run through any specific questions you have about company culture with the hiring manager to ensure it aligns with your views.
 

5. Use a recruiter

Research some recruitment agencies for one that are a good fit for what you want, then build relationships with 1-3 of them to get their help and advice. 

Build a relationship with your consultant and consider their advice: View your relationship with your Consultant as a partnership. Your consultant will have extensive knowledge of the clients they work with and have often worked with them over a long period of time. 

This enables them to offer significant insight into the business culture, people you are interviewing with, testing procedures, and interview formats etc. They will be able to offer valuable information to assist in your interview preparation, giving you a competitive advantage over other candidates.

 

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