You just finished University and you are ready to work! But with you, so are 1000’s of other students. The youth employment is high, there are too many high educated starters and in the UK, for every graduate job there is an average of 52 applications. Researchers think that in a few years time we will look back and see that we are the ‘lost generation’.
I am sure that most of you heard the sentences ‘You are overqualified’ and ‘ You don’t have enough experience’ at least as much as I did. You are stuck in this gap between being overqualified and having no work experience at all. Almost no company is willing to hire you, so you won’t gain the work experience you need, and if you apply for a position where you don’t necessarily need a degree or extra curriculum activities, they won’t hire you as well, because they know that you will be gone as soon as you find something more suitable for your background.
It is obvious that it is quite hard to even land a job interview in our times. If you have the job of your dreams in the company you always wanted: Congratulations and seriously, well done! Hold on to it because there are a lot of graduates out there that will be happy to be in your position!
So with more applications than jobs, how do you increase your chances of landing yourself a job interview? CGD gives you 4 extra tips that hopefully will help you to take the first successful step in this process.
#1 – Do research on the Hiring Manager
The same online research you do when you like a guy (Okay, probably not as much!), you should do on the person who is hopefully going to hire you. Especially when the vacancy only states a general e-mail address, try to find out what the company e-mail from the Hiring Manager is. Most times, if you know the overall company email (e.g. [email protected]) and you know the name of the Manager (e.g. Elisabeth Jones), you can try different options with the e-mail and see what works ([email protected], [email protected]). This brings your application right to the person that has a say in the whole process, you know for sure that your application will be seen and you jump the big ‘queue’ of applications.
#2 – Do a short non-paid work experience
One of my friends landed herself a job this way. She rung them up and asked if it was possible to do a 4 weeks work experience. There is almost no company in the world who would say ‘no’ to that! Once you are in you are able to prove what you are worth. Be the best non-paid worker they ever had. If a position becomes available that is suitable for you (if you are lucky there is already one available when you are there) you will have a big advantage, because they already know you, your work style and if you fit in their team. Read our previous articles on ‘How to be the best Intern’ and ‘How to turn your internship into a full-time job offer’.
#3 – Go to the company’s events that are open to public
Networking is key! Especially with so many applications for one job position, it will always be helpful if they already know your face and name. Especially bigger companies regularly hold events that are open to graduates or other people with an interest in the company. Dress appropriately for the event and know what the company’s dress code is. If you need some extra tips on how to make a good and memorable impression, read our previous article on: ‘How to sell yourself in 60 seconds’ and don’t forget your business card!
#4 – Make your CV stand out
Always make sure your CV is tailored to the job description. Don’t have only 1 CV that you use for every job application. Read the job requirements and shape and change your CV until your profile fits the position. Don’t lie on your resume, shaping and changing means highlighting the skills and knowledge that you have gained from previous experiences, that are also needed for the job you are applying for. More tips on making your CV stand out can be found here!
Featured Image: The Carrie Diaries