Are you unsure of what career is right for you? Do you want to progress rapidly in your career? If the answer to one of those questions is yes, you’ll definitely benefit from some online career counselling.
What is online career counselling?
Online career counselling involves consuming online resources that are designed to help you to secure and thrive in the right job that is tailored to your skills and interests.
The beauty of online career counselling is that it allows you to digest content at your own pace and reflect upon how you’ll implement what you have learnt.
What online career counselling resources do you offer at Graduate Coach?
Here at Graduate Coach, we offer a wide variety of online career counselling resources designed for students, graduates and career changers.
Here’s a list of our online career counselling resources:
The Graduate Coach blog:
We have a wide range of blog posts covering topics relating to interview tips, job applications, career advice and more.
One of the reasons why many graduates struggle is because they don’t know what to do after university.
There are several different graduate job titles on the market and it can become quite confusing if you are not sure of what career path to embark on. Online counselling sessions can help students, graduates and career changers to discover what career is right for them and help them to make an informed career choice.
We have an online course called: Discover your career path. The course helps candidates to identify their skills, interests and ambitions and to understand their career typology.
It is quite normal to feel lost after graduation. A few months ago, you couldn’t wait until your exams were over and now you are wondering where all the time went.
Now that you are a graduate, there will be lots of new opportunities to look forward to and important decisions to make.
In this post, we’ll share some tips on how you can beat that feeling of being lost after graduation. We’ll also share some tips on what you can do to get your career off to a great start!
1) Remember that it is completely normal to feel lost after graduation
The student lifestyle is like none other.
For the past few years, your life has been centred around essay deadlines, maintaining an active social life and getting to lectures on time.
All of that came to an abrupt end and now you have a lot of things to think about regarding your future.
It is completely normal to feel lost after graduation because you are experiencing a massive change in your lifestyle.
However, this feeling will fade away as you adjust to your new lifestyle as a graduate.
2) Don’t compare yourself to your friends
I know it can be difficult not to compare yourself to your friends, but remember, you are on your own journey.
Whilst all of your friends might have graduated and seem as though they have ‘their lives together’ you’ll never know what they are going through.
If you feel as though everyone else has landed a great graduate job and you are at home twiddling your thumbs, now is a good time to start your graduate job search.
3) Reflect on your time at university
Whether you’ve recently graduated from your undergraduate or postgraduate studies, you’ll have a lot to reflect on.
Take some time to think about what you really enjoyed doing when you were at university.
Was it working in a group?
Did you particularly enjoy being the president of a society?
Also, take some time to reflect on any work-related experiences you may have gained. Think about the skills you gained from it.
What did you absolutely hate about university? Maybe you disliked writing long essays? Whatever it was bare it in mind and think about why you disliked it.
4) Write down your skills and interests
Now that you have taken some time to reflect on your time at university, write down all of the skills that you have gained.
Use the STAR method to write out examples of how you have been able to demonstrate these skills during your academic studies or your work experience.
The STAR method is an acronym for:
It is a good idea to practise using the STAR method because it will come in handy during your upcoming interviews for graduate jobs.
Also, note down any interests you gained whilst you were at university. Maybe you became fascinated by technology, or maybe finance has piqued your interest.
5) Match your skills against the 6 key skills that all employers will look for in graduates.
Even if you do not have any work experience yet, you’ll be able to use examples from your time at university.
The 6 key employability skills for graduates are:
Organising and planning
Working on your own initiative
Using the STAR method, write out examples of how you are able to demonstrate each of those skills.
6) Work out your career typology
Most graduates aren’t aware of this, but all graduate jobs can be categorised into three key areas:
Graduates who are knowledge architects are hired for their ability to analyse data and draw valuable insights from them. Examples include management consultants or accountants.
Communicators are employed to build and maintain profitable relationships. Examples include sales and marketing roles.
Specialists make up only around 10% of graduates. These graduates are hired primarily for there specialist knowledge in a particular field. Many specialists study vocational courses at university such as medicine, or nursing.
Knowing your career typology will help you to narrow down what types of graduate jobs. This will help you massively if you are feeling lost after graduation.
Once you know that you are a communicator, for instance, you’ll be able to focus your job search on communicator roles.
7) Put together your graduate CV
The idea of putting together your graduate CV may seem daunting. This is especially the case if you feel as though you do not have much work experience.
However, don’t put it off, because you’ll want to have a solid CV that you can easily tailor if a graduate opportunity comes up.
In our book, The Student Book, we have dedicated a whole section to writing your first graduate CV and included several examples of great graduate CVs.
Get yourself a copy of the graduate book either in hardback or ebook.
8) Start applying for graduate-level jobs
As you have invested all that time and money into getting a degree, you’ll probably want to get a graduate job that has great prospects.
Now that you understand what your skills and interests are and what your career typology is, you can start thinking about sending off some job applications.
If you don’t follow the process outlined above and rush into applying for graduate jobs you may end up feeling confused and even more lost after graduation.
Here at Graduate Coach, we have helped over 500 students and graduates to secure graduate positions at a large number of the top graduate employers including PwC, JP Morgan, Facebook and many more.
So, you’ve bagged yourself a degree, and now you want to land yourself a graduate job. The only thing is, you have no experience. Don’t worry, because in this post, we will tell you how to get a graduate job with no experience.
Reflect on your time at university
You may actually have a lot more experience than you think!
Perhaps you feel as though you do not have any relevant work experience to the types of graduate job that you’d like to apply for.
However, you will have gained some transferable skills from taking part in other activities that will be valuable to employers.
Here are some activities you may have taken part in during your time at university:
-Work shadowing: some universities have work shadowing schemes that allow students to shadow members of staff in different departments, or arrange for students to take part in work shadowing experiences with local businesses. Maybe you arranged to shadow a professional in a work environment.
-Volunteering: have you taken part in any volunteering activities at, or outside of university? Volunteering can help you to develop a wide variety of skills.
Furthermore, as you start your job search you may realise that a lot of the companies that you are interested in may encourage employees to volunteer for a few days every year. If a company has a culture that promotes giving back to the local community, your volunteering experience may be impressive to potential employers.
-Leadership roles within university societies: Have you held any leadership positions within a society at your university?
It can be extremely difficult to balance running a society with your academics. Doing so requires time management and organisational skills which are relevant skills to all graduate roles.
Even if you wasn’t the president or vice president of a society, any role you took that helped to run the society will be relevant.
-Sports: There are lots of opportunities to take part in sports at university. Most sports require developing teamwork skills which will be relevant for all graduate jobs or graduate schemes that you apply for.
-Maintaining a part-time job: Did you have a part-time job whilst you were studying? if so, you will have gained relevant experiences that will prove to be valuable for your graduate position.
-Course-related experiences: University courses are designed to help students to develop skills that will be useful for the workplace. Your course probably required you to take part in group assignments, presentations, essays and reports and more. If you took part in an activity as part of your course that helped you to develop some specific skills, that can also count as experience.
Don’t dismiss any previous experience that you have gained just because you may feel that it is not relevant.
Recruiters will understand that for their graduate and entry-level positions, candidates may not have a lot of experience that is directly related to the role. However, they will be interested in what skills you have gained and developed from the experiences you do have.
Remember, your unique combination of experiences is what makes you stand out from the crowd!
Now that you have reflected on your time at university, it’s time to conduct a skills audit.
Write down all of the skills that you have gained from the activities you took part in during university.
No matter what types of graduate jobs you apply for, all graduate recruiters will look for the following 6 skills:
-Organisation and planning
-Using your own initiative
For each of the skills listed above, draw upon the experiences gained at university to demonstrate that you have those skills.
This exercise will be helpful when it comes to filling out job applications and preparing for interviews.
After conducting an audit of your skills, identify what your career typology is.
All graduate jobs will can be categorised into three groups:
Check out our post on CV-Library called How to discover your career path for more information on career typologies and identifying which of the three career typologies you belong to.
Once you have identified your career typology, you’ll be able to easily create a shortlist of jobs with job descriptions suited to your skills and interests.
Employers will be looking for evidence that graduates are able to solve problems, communicate, work as a team organise themselves, act professional and use their own initiative. Even if you do not have any formal work experience, you should be able to demonstrate that you have those 6 key skills.
Once you have a better understanding of your experiences, skills and your career typology, you can start working on your CV.
By this point, it won’t be a case of writing a CV with no experience.
All of the activities that you listed in step one can all be added to your CV.
The key is to write an achievement-based CV.
We have put together a wide range of resources on how to write an achievement-based CV
There’s a whole section on it in The Student Book which contains everything you need to know to get the job you really want.
We also collaborated with Chris Pennington from Your CV Consultant which outlines 4 tips on writing a winning graduate CV.
Applications and interviews
Now that you have your CV ready and you have narrowed down a list of suitable careers, you can start sending your applications.
Whilst sending out your applications keep a spreadsheet containing a list of the companies you have applied to and any feedback that you get.
The application process for graduate jobs usually involves:
-submitting an online form
-completing online tests i.e psychometric tests
-a telephone or video interview
-an assessment centre with group tasks and a face to face interview
Graduate job interviews might seem daunting if you feel as though you haven’t got any work experience that is directly relevant to the role. However, as we discovered in step 1, you will have gained experiences during your time at university that employers will be very interested in.
Being able to perform highly in interviews is a lifelong skill.
When it comes to knowing how to get a graduate job with “no experience” networking will come in very handy.
First of all, ensure that your social media profiles are fully optimised, especially your LinkedIn profile.
Keep an eye out for networking events hosted by the companies you are interested in. Also, find out if there are any upcoming graduate career fairs.
Attending career fairs will give you the opportunity to meet graduate recruiters in person.
Be sure to dress to impress and be able to confidently articulate who you are and what you are looking for.
If you have read this entire post and are still unsure of how to get a graduate job with no experience, get in touch with us!
We are here to help!
We offer a wide range of services designed to help students, graduates and career changers to turn their degrees into careers.
So far our coaching and careers advice has helped over 500 people!
How to get a graduate job with no experience: Summary
We hope you have found this post valuable!
The chances are, even though you may feel as though you do not have any work experience, you probably have! Remember, at this stage in your career, it’s not necessarily about having a ton of highly relevant experience.
Graduate recruiters will be looking for the skills that you have gained from the experiences you do have. Even if these experiences have been gained from extracurricular activities.
The idea of being unemployed after uni is every graduate’s worst fear.
After all, you’ve invested a lot of time and money into getting a degree with the intention of getting a graduate job afterwards.
If you have been sending out applications but not getting invited to many interviews or if you have been continually failing interviews, read this blog post.
We will explain what you can do if you find yourself being unemployed after uni.
So without further ado, let’s get started!
Stop “Panic applying” for jobs. Get strategic with your job search
We see this all too often, graduates ‘panic apply’ for multiple jobs and get discouraged when their applications are unsuccessful.
In a state of panic, we make rash decisions.
Finding a graduate job needs to be an informed decision.
Ultimately you want to find the right graduate job for you.
If you’ve been ‘panic applying’ for jobs and just hoping that you’ll get lucky, stop.
It may feel stressful being an unemployed graduate. Your friends may have started great graduate jobs and perhaps you are living at home and your parents are on your case about getting a job. However, try not to let this get to you too much.
There is a much more strategic approach you can take to boost your chances of getting more interviews and more job offers.
The following steps will explain how you can be more strategic when it comes to applying for jobs.
Discover your career path
Lots of graduates don’t have a clue when it comes to knowing what to do after university.
So if you are unsure of what career is right for you, don’t worry. This is very normal.
However, you will have a set of skills and a range of interests that can help you to determine what career path might be the right fit for you.
Also, remember if you don’t find your dream job early on in your career, that is absolutely fine. Sometimes you need to gain a variety of experiences in the workplace and work out what you don’t like before you can work out what you love doing.
Here’s our tried and tested method to help you to discover what career path might be right for you:
Identify your skills
First of all, it is a great idea to write down all of the skills that you have developed since you started university.
You may have gained these skills from:
-Employment (full-time or part-time)
-Work experience, placements, internships or shadowing
For each of the skills you identify, use the STAR method to demonstrate how you have demonstrated that skill.
Regardless of the graduate job you end up getting, the recruiter will be looking for evidence of communication skills, problem-solving skills, teamwork skills, the ability to use your initiative, organisational skills and professionalism.
Work out your career typology
Not many people are aware of this, but all grad jobs can be categorised into 3 main categories:
Once you have assessed your skills and you have identified your career typology, the next thing to do is to come up with a list of suitable graduate jobs roles. Be sure to read the job descriptions carefully.
Work on your graduate CV
If you have followed our advice so far, you’ll be in a much better position to start preparing to apply for graduate jobs.
The next step is to brush up your graduate CV.
The aim of your CV is to convince the recruiter to invite you for an interview. Think of it as a sales pitch.
Chances are, at some point during your graduate job search, you’ll be asked to complete a video interview. Naturally, you’ll want to excel in your video interview and successfully progress to the next stage of the interview process. So in this post, we’ll share our step-by-step guide on how to prepare for a video interview.
Step 1: Understand the different types of video interviews
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how to prepare for a video interview, it is important to note that there are two main types of video interviews:
1) Live video interviews
Live video interviews are often conducted via online video conferencing software such as Skype or Google Hangouts.
These videos are between you and a graduate recruiter or a member of the team you are applying to join.
It is likely to be quite similar to a telephone interview, but the interviewer will be able to pick up on more of your non-verbal communication skills.
2) Pre-Recorded video interviews
Recorded or one-sided interviews are increasing in popularity, so the chances are, you’ll be invited to take one at some point during your graduate job search.
If you are asked to complete a recorded video interview, you’ll be sent a link to a video interview platform.
The email will walk you through how to access the platform and begin your video interview recording.
You’ll be required to record your answers to the video interview questions within the time limit.
Step 2: Gather as much information as you can about the video interview.
Whilst there are two main types of video interview, your experience will be different for every company.
Some video interviews are designed to get to know more about you as a person and are relatively informal.
Others are more rigorous and are designed to see how you function under pressure.
Before your video interview, find out what will be expected of you.
You can find this information by doing the following:
Reading the video interview invite very carefully. You’ll usually be sent an email inviting you to take a video interview. It is vital that you read through this email extremely carefully.
Re-visit the company’s website and navigate to the page outlining the details of the graduate job that you’ve applied for.
On that page, you’ll usually find a section about the application process and specifically about the video interview stage.
Use websites like Glassdoor to read about other candidate’s interview experiences. This will give you a deeper insight into what to expect.
When it comes to knowing how to prepare for a video interview, it is vital that you first find out as much as possible about the interview you have been invited to.
Step 3: Practise for your video interview
When it comes to knowing how to prepare for a video interview, practising is one of the most important steps.
Knowing how to outperform other candidates being interviewed is a skill.
However, most people are never taught this skill.
There’s definitely an art and science behind excelling in interviews.
Here at Graduate Coach, we have been providing interview training sessions for graduates for over a decade now.
Chris Davies, Founder of Graduate Coach
If you are currently preparing for an interview for a job that you really want, we strongly urge you to contact us.
We can help you in two ways:
You can book one-to-one interview coaching sessions with a graduate coach.
Find out more about our in-person interview coaching here.
You can purchase our online interview course called Nail that Interview for just £99.
The Nail that interview course condenses everything you need to know to succeed in your interviews into 8 hours of interactive content.
Find out more about our online interview course here.
As part of our interview preparation course, we can also arrange for you to take a mock recorded video interview.
This will involve taking part in a recorded mock interview. We will then review it and provide feedback until you gain more confidence and improve your interview technique.
If you will be having a live video interview, make sure that you are familiar with the video conferencing software that you’ll be required to use. Set up a test call with a friend to get familiar with the platform.
If you will be doing a recorded video interview, practise answering interview questions out loud and film your responses. Be prepared to answer questions related to your non-academic experience.
When watching the recording back assess your body language and the clarity of your answers.
Step 4: Find the best location to take your video interview
There’s a lot to take into consideration when it comes to deciding on the location where you’ll do your video interview.
Good internet connection
This is probably one of the most important factors to take into consideration when you are deciding where to take your video interview.
If your internet connection is poor the quality of the video call or video interview recording may be poor.
Video interview background
When it comes to the background of your video interview, keep it simple.
You don’t want the interviewer or the person reviewing your recorded video interview to get distracted by your background.
You want to be the main focus!
Therefore, ensure that your background will be clean, tidy and minimal.
Test out what your background will look like to the employer before you start your video interview by turning on your webcam and seeing what background works best.
Before you start your video interview, check that both your webcam and microphone are working correctly.
Check your camera and microphone
This is a vital check to avoid major problems during your video interview.
If you will be doing a recorded video interview, there might be a prompt before the interview to check your mic and webcam.
Position your camera so that it is at eye-level. You’ll want to ensure that you maintain good eye contact with the camera whilst giving your answers.
You want the interviewer or the person reviewing your recorded video interview to be able to see you clearly.
After all, they will be picking up on your non-verbal body language as well as your verbal responses.
Before your video interview, test the lighting to ensure that you can easily be seen.
You might want to use desk lighting if the room you are in is a bit dark.
If it is a sunny day, ensure that the sunlight isn’t casting shadows over you.
A quiet background without any potential distractions
It is really important that you find a quiet location to record your video interview.
Small background noises could potentially be picked up by your mic which could make it difficult for your voice to be heard.
As well as ensuring that your background is as quiet as possible, minimise any potential distractions.
If you will be taking your video interview at home, be sure to inform your family members so that they do not interrupt your interview.
Plan to take your video interview at a time where there is likely to be the least amount of distractions.
If possible, try not to take your video interview in a public place where you can’t control external factors such as lighting or potential distractions.
Sit in a comfortable chair
During your video interview, it is important that you maintain good posture.
Slouching will make you come across as being less confident.
If you are using a computer chair, avoid swinging on the chair whilst talking, even if you feel nervous.
Step 5: Dress appropriately for the company you are applying to
Wear what you would normally wear to an in-person interview.
Even though only your head and shoulders will be on show, you want to make the right impression.
Some companies require employees to wear business attire. Whilst Some companies allow employees to choose what they want to wear based on their own judgement.
It is a good idea to research the company’s culture before the interview to get a good idea of what the employees wear.
One way to get a sense of what the employees typically wear is to look at the images of staff members on the company’s website.
Replicate what the employees typically wear. For example, if they wear smart clothing, dress smartly for your video interview.
-Avoid bright colours and patterns and go for softer colours instead.
– If you are wearing a tie, wear a solid coloured tie. -If you wear glasses, adjust the lighting in the room to reduce glare from the lenses.
Step 6: Make sure you have everything you might need nearby
Before your video interview starts, make sure that you have everything you might need nearby.
Check the video interview invite to see if it states that you’ll need anything in particular such as a calculator or a pen and paper.
Here are some things you might want to have nearby during your video interview:
Notepad/paper and pen
A copy of your CV
Any notes you took whilst preparing for the interview.
Glasses if you may need them
A bottle of water
As well as making sure that you have everything that you might need around you, get rid of any potential distractions.
-Switch off your phone during your video interview
-Close any other tabs that you have open in your web browser
-Declutter the area that you will be taking your video intervie
Step 7: Prepare for unexpected events
With technology, there’s always a chance things could go wrong.
The interviewer understands that unexpected events may occur. They will be interested to see how you deal with such situations.
Many other posts on how to prepare for a video interview miss this very important point.
Here’s how to prepare for unexpected occurrences during your video interview.
What to do if your audio stops working
Tip: ask the interviewer for a number that you can reach them on if you get disconnected.
If the video cuts out, call them at that number.
Ask if you can continue the interview by phone or if you can reschedule at a later date.
• How to handle unexpected noises
If noises (sirens, construction, etc.) interrupt your video interview, don’t just ignore it.
Apologise for the interruption and ask for a few moments until the noise has subsided.
You may want to mute the microphone if the noise is particularly loud or disruptive.
• If someone enters the room unexpectedly
If someone enters the room while you’re interviewing:
-Let the interviewer know what has happened -Ask them for a few moments -Mute your microphone and turn off your camera -Deal with the interruption
Before the interview, find out who you’ll need to contact in the event of any technical difficulties.
Sometimes this information will be included in the video interview email invite or on the webpage outlining the application process.
Remember, unexpected events are sometimes unavoidable.
Your potential employer will be very interested to see how you deal with the situation because unexpected events occur in the workplace all the time.
Knowing all about how to prepare for a video interview questions is one thing but preparing for the unexpected, what to wear and the equipment you may need is an important step.
How to prepare for a video interview: summary
Video interviews are becoming much more popular. Most internship and graduate roles at large companies require candidates to complete one as part of the recruitment process.
Therefore, knowing how to prepare for a video interview is absolutely vital!
Whether it’s a video interview or a traditional face to face interview, preparation is key.
Surprisingly, people only spend on average 36 minutes preparing for an interview.
This is not enough time.
Preparing properly will help you to stand out amongst the other candidates.
Before your video interview, schedule in some time to practise answering questions. This will help you to refine your interview technique.
We hope you find these tips on how to prepare for your video interview helpful.
If you would like further support to prepare for your job interviews, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
Editor’s note: We’ve teamed up with Rebecca Hart from StudentJob UK to bring you these 6 graduate scheme application tips!
Have you just finished uni and are recovering from the mix of all-nighters, either from studying or partying? Well, we hate to break it to you, but there is little time for relaxation as you will need to think about your next career steps. But, you may not know where to start when applying for graduate jobs. To help, here are our best graduate scheme application tips.
1. Research and Plan in Advance
After years of trying to work out what you want to do in your life in advance, you should hopefully be used to this by now! Choosing your GCSEs when you only just discovered there were three different sciences was just the first of your big choices.
By researching and planning, you can work out what you want to achieve with your first graduate job and set goals to help you get there. Through researching the jobs you are interested in, you will also be able to see what common skills are required.
Once you understand what the valued qualities are, you can then add these to your CV to attract employers.
If you do find your dream job when researching then great! However, don’t rush and apply straight away. Yes, the pressure is on to submit your CV and cover letter but also make sure you understand the company and the role you are applying to.
It is vital to understand the companies recruitment strategy before starting to apply.
Do they do group interviews? Where would you be based? Anything and everything you can think of. If you can’t find out information, then why don’t you make a list that you could use if you get through to the interview stage.
Also, find out as much as you can about the application process. Will you be required to complete psychometric tests? If so, it’s wise to start preparing for them.
Most graduate schemes require candidates to attend interviews and assessment centres. These will also need to be prepared for.
We can’t emphasise the importance of this step enough! It is vital. Employers need to see that you truly understand the company, industry and the role that you have applied to. That’s why we have put this tip as number 1 on our list of graduate scheme application tips!
2. Optimise your CV
Make your CV tailored to the role you are applying for. Recruiters will be able to tell when you use a standard template for every single job you apply to.
If you tailor your CV and cover letter to the specific role, then this will firstly stand out. It shows that you care about the job and are passionate about being explicitly hired for that vacancy.
A good way would be using the relevant work experience that relates to the job you are applying for. So be creative, but remain professional.
You do not want to make a list of your achievements. The aim is to sell yourself so that you are asked back for an interview.
You may have many stories to share about your life; however, focus on a couple that shows how your skills have developed. Did you do a year abroad or had great success? Have you even got a failure which you overcame?
Picking only one or two achievements will convey a stronger message to the employer. You can show how these qualities can be used in your graduate job, making your CV stand out above others.
It is not all about your work experience, so ensure you also include your hobbies and interests. This is important for recruiters as they can identify your personality and see if you are right for the company culture.
It is also recommended to send a cover letter with your CV to entice the recruiter to open your CV and find out more.
3. Make your CV Easy to Understand
Employers will receive hundreds of CVs, for just one available position. They won’t want to be reading every single sentence. Make yours stand out by it being easy to follow and let the readers know the primary information in 6 seconds.
Yes, 6 seconds is the average time someone would look at your CV. So you want to attract them to carry on reading. One spelling or grammar mistake and you could find your CV is chucked in the bin, so make sure this doesn’t happen to you!
Try not to overcomplicate your CV too. You may think making it fancy will help show off. However, employers are looking for a simple CV with a logical layout that quantifies your achievements.
Using elaborate fonts and images will detract from what you want to a recruiter to see. Also, try to break up the text, so it is easier to read – the easier it is to read, the longer they will read it!
Remember always to get your CV proof-read and get a second opinion. This also applies to your cover letter.
4. Use Social Media to your Advantage
Social media is a great way to find a job if you use them in the right way. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are ideal places to start. With 500 million users, LinkedIn is the most popular medium for recruitment.
9/10 companies use LinkedIn when looking for employees. Complete your profile, connect with pages that fit your studies and add your skills and work experience. Doing this will make you stand out to recruiters as they will be able to see your qualities when glancing at your profile.
Make sure you choose a good headshot too and include a headline that is straight to the point, showing off what you are looking for. Whether you find a job via LinkedIn, or just add to your professional network, it is a great way to engage with others.
Remember, LinkedIn is a two-way street – so reach out to others and don’t expect recruiters to find you.
Key graduate scheme application tip: Use LinkedIn to build up your professional network.
You can find professionals in the area of work you are interested in and see how their career path progressed.
Graduate employers will check your social media even if you haven’t used them for your application. So make sure to make all of your channels have a positive balance of personal and professional life.
5. Get ready for the Interview Stage
If you have got to the interview stage, then congratulations! However, you need to smash this stage to reach the next step.
So to prepare for an interview, you have to practice lots. Even practising with family and friends will help you understand what you could be facing and make you think about the points you can bring to the interview.
As part of your preparation, make sure that you actually want the job.
It may seem obvious, but it could be a waste of time if it turns out the company or role isn’t for you. This links to stage 1 of researching the company.
Key Graduate scheme application tip: The graduate recruitment team will have been trained to determine genuine motivation.
Therefore, if you don’t genuinely want the job or if you want the job for the wrong reasons you’ll waste your own and the recruiter’s time.
Grad schemes aren’t for everyone. They provide structured training and sometimes rotations across departments. Some graduates prefer a graduate job rather than a graduate scheme.
If you are enthusiastic about getting the job offer, then you should prepare questions to ask, this is a great way to find out the missing information and show that you want the job.
Read through your CV and cover letter application to make sure you know what you have said.
It is a good idea to know what’s on your CV so you know interesting points to develop on and understand what they could be referring to. Also, know what you didn’t include in your CV so you can speak about it in your interview if it is relevant.
Some companies have many applicants through to the interview stage, so don’t be disappointed if they don’t offer/reject you straight away. Hopefully, at the end of the interview, they will give you a timescale for how long their feedback will take, but if not, this is something you could always ask.
If you don’t hear from them within a suitable time, contact them to see if they have any news. This is the same for any of the application stages.
Good luck, and remember, rejection is something which everyone goes through at some point, and it still gives you application practice! If you don’t get your dream job, then don’t stress.
Key graduate scheme application tip: There are plenty of other ways to get to where you want to be in your career, and your first grad job is just another stepping stone.
Written by Rebecca Hart, an Online Marketer at StudentJob UK. If you are looking for a job but not sure where to start then check out StudentJob. Our application tips will help you create an effective cv, cover letter and help you smash interviews!
You’ve landed on this webpage because you’d like to know how to get a summer internship! Well you’ve come to the right place!
The competition for graduate jobs in the UK is fierce. Statistics show that half the people graduating from university will never find work that is suitable for their level of education – a graduate job.
Most will end up in jobs that they don’t even need a degree for.
There are thousands of applications for every graduate job advertised in the UK. Many people from other countries apply too, intensifying the competition.
Internships, paid or unpaid, or summer jobs, are a valuable way for graduates to gain crucial work experience, hone their skills and learn more about business and the marketplace.
They provide a foot in the door for future employment and help graduates to get to know themselves and their capabilities and find out which career will best suit them. This entry-level work will assist enormously when it comes to applying for and landing that dream graduate job.
Graduate Coach is a company founded by Chris Davies that specialises in helping graduates find employment. It has helped 500 graduates land great jobs so far. We offer a variety of services, from defining your skills set to helping you compile a professional CV to coaching for interviews and more.
The following video by Chris Davies will outline how to get a summer internship.
So without further ado, here’s how to get a summer internship.
1. Write an achievement-based CV
This is the first and most important step. It is critical as employers, whether they are offering jobs or internships, receive hundreds of applications.
Your CV is your introduction to them and it has to stand out. It must be properly organised, professional-looking and list all the attributes that will make you an asset to their company, even if you do not yet have formal work experience.
One of these attributes is your skills set. What are you good at? Skills such as getting on with people and being able to work in a team; communication; organisation; persistence; a good work ethic and a willingness to learn all count, even if you do not have work experience. You have been at school, taken part in sport and hobbies and graduated from university.
Along this path you inevitably proved that you are good at some things and acquired skills in learning to do them well. List these skills Many will make you eligible for a job or an internship.
If you are daunted by the prospect of compiling a good CV, get professional help from Graduate Coach. It’s worth it.
2. Write an outstanding cover letter
This, with your CV, is your introduction to the company you are applying to and it is competing with hundreds of others. State who you are; what you are interested in and why you would like to work/intern at their company. Impress them with some knowledge about the company that you have researched. Show that you are keen to work there. Again, if you are not confident about doing this properly, Graduate Coach can help.
Do an internship search to find internship opportunities. Thousands of companies in the UK advertise internships online. Doing a search, for instance, on UK companies offering internships, will produce a long list of firms and charities looking for interns and their contact details.
After adapting your CV and covering letter to make them appropriate for where you are applying to, send them off. The more companies you contact, the better your chances of getting an internship. You can also look at job listing websites such as indeed, jobisjob, totaljobs, jobrapido, trovit etc for more leads to help you find your dream internship.
Cold canvassing can also work. Call the companies you are interested in and ask to speak to someone in HR or whoever is in charge of hiring or internships. This is another way of introducing yourself which you can follow up by sending you CV and covering letter.
3. Go to job or career fairs or expos
Take your CV and a covering letter and hand it out to everyone. Speak to people. Network. Take their contact details and give them yours. Make sure they remember you so that you will be in their mind when they recruit.
Charities and other organisations working in welfare and even animal welfare are always looking for volunteers. It might not seem to make sense to work for nothing but it does. You can prove yourself as a volunteer and get letters of recommendation at the end of your stint, which will stand you in good stead when you apply for a job.
5. Employment rights and pay for interns
If an intern is classed as a worker, they should be paid the national minimum wage of £7.70 per hour if aged 21 to 24 or £8.21 per hour if aged 25 or older.
6. Prepare for your interview
If you get past the first step and are asked to go for an interview with the company or organisation offering the internship, be prepared.
You would never have gone into an exam without preparation at university and an interview is just that – a test to see if you are the candidate they are looking for.
About 85% of graduates say they are nervous about being interviewed. This will be a huge stumbling block in landing a good job or an internship for that matter. You can build confidence by being prepared. Research the company.
Find out as much as you can bout its ethos, position in the marketplace, what it offers that is unique, for instance.
This will help you ask intelligent questions and impress the interviewer.
The trick is to appear confident but not arrogant. Expert coaching will help you be successful in this critical part of any job or internship application. Graduate Coach can help you and remove any nervousness which will hamper your chances.
There are websites that direct people to available internships in all sorts of fields. Doing a simple search like Internship websites UK, for instance, leads to a listing of internships in fields as diverse as publishing, graphic design, website design, digital marketing and more.
You can also find lists of companies offering internships or summer jobs. Get busy. Do your homework and start applying!
How To Get A Summer Internship: summary
Thanks for reading our post on how to get a summer internship!
There are several benefits of getting an internship over the summer holiday.
You’ll gain valuable work experience and transferable skills
It will help you to make informed career choices
The experience will help you to stand out from the competition
Graduate recruiters build a talent funnel. Successfully completing an internship can increase your chances of being hired by the company as a graduate. Check out our post that shares top graduate scheme application tips.
Our founder, Chris Davies, has published two books packed with invaluable information: The Student Book and The Graduate Book. Also visit our website where you will find a series of blog posts with more excellent advice, a list of the services they off and contact details.
Congratulations! You’ve graduated. But what’s next? You probably want to turn your degree into a graduate career. If you need help finding a graduate job, you’ve come to the right place.
Here at Graduate Coach, we have helped 500+ students and graduates to land the job of their dreams. They are now highly successful and are thriving in companies such as Google, Facebook, JP Morgan and many more, check out our successes.
1. Get a Graduate Coach
Finding a graduate job can be difficult. Only 52% of graduates land themselves a graduate-level job the remaining 48% work in roles that do not require a degree.
However, finding a graduate job is one thing, but finding the RIGHT graduate job is quite another. 50% of graduates that do land a graduate level job quit after 2 years after realising the job isn’t right for them.
If you are thinking of sending your CV to graduate recruitment agencies, make sure that your CV is the best it can be.
Along with an achievement-based CV, it is important that you learn how to write great covering letters.
3. Optimise your Linkedin profile
Graduate recruiters are increasingly using social media platforms such as Linkedin to look for suitable graduates to fill graduate-level positions.
If you do not have a profile, or if your profile has not been completed you could be missing out on great opportunities and narrowing your chances of finding a graduate job.
With an optimised LinkedIn profile more potential employers will visit your page and reach out to you directly if they feel you’d be a good fit for their company.
Secondly, many graduate employers post ads on LinkedIn’s job board. Before applying to any of these jobs via the platform, it’s a good idea to improve your profile so that you give off the right impression.
Before you start job hunting, identify your career typology.
Graduate jobs can be divided into 3 broad categories:
Grads are hired into each of these categories for different reasons.
Specialists such as doctors, nurses or pharmacists are hired for their expert knowledge in a particular field.
Knowledge architects such as consultants for financial analysts are hired for their ability to interpret data and derive valuable insights from them.
Communicators such as account managers and salespeople are hired for their ability to maintain profitable, long-term relationships with clients and to relay important information to other team members.
Identifying which of these career typologies you identify with the most will help you to narrow down your job search so that you’ll be more likely to apply for jobs that are more aligned with your skill set.
5. Brush up on your interview skills
Here are 5 key points when it comes to graduate interviews:
You must prepare adequately for your graduate interviews if you want to boost your chances of successfully finding a graduate job.
This sounds obvious, however, the average candidate spends on average 36 minutes preparing for their interviews. This is not enough time.
Before your interview, make sure that you know everything that is humanly possible to know about the job description of the role that you are applying for, the company and the industry.
It is a good idea to review all of the work placements and internships you have done in the past and write answers to common competency-based questions using the STAR format.
The more prepared you are for the interview the more confident you’ll come across to the interviewer.
Confidence is very important in interviews. If you are not confident in yourself and your ability to do the job really well, how will the interviewer be confident in you?
You must demonstrate that you have the skills required to do the job really well.
If you have adequately prepared for your interview, you’ll be able to confidently draw upon your work experience and skills to articulate why you should be selected for the job over other candidates.
You must show empathy to the interviewer.
It is important to show the interviewer that you truly understand what they are looking for. It’s about showing the interviewer that you care about what truly matters to them.
Again, your ability to understand your interviewer’s thoughts, motivations and feelings will depend on how prepared you are.
You must ask for the job!
The idea of asking for the job may seem daunting at first, but with practice, you’ll get the hang of it.
You get a couple of minutes just before the end of an interview to ask questions.
Use this time wisely.
Reinstating why you really want the job and asking for it will help you to leave a lasting impression on the interviewer.
Remember they may be interviewing several other candidates for the role. How you end the interview is vital.
Most graduate jobs require candidates to complete a video interview
It is important that you find out as much as you can about how to perform highly in video interviews.
So you’ve finished your time at university, but it is taking longer than you’d have hoped to bag yourself a graduate-level job.
We’ve put together this actionable blog post to help graduates who are struggling to find a job after university.
We’ll first cover why some graduates struggle, before providing a step-by-step list of actions to take in order to help you to land your dream job.
Why graduates are struggling to find a job after university
If you’ve been struggling to find work in a graduate position or have been applying to several graduate schemes without success, the first thing to note is that you are not alone.
Whilst it is a distressing fact, 48% of graduates never land a graduate-level job and remain underemployed.
That’s why it is our mission here at Graduate Coach to help students and graduates to turn their degrees into careers – and so far we have helped over 500 people to do so.
Over the past decade of offering career coaching to hundreds of graduates around the world, we have been able to pinpoint the main reasons why graduates struggle to find a job after university.
Here are the top 3 reasons:
1. They don’t know what graduate jobs are right for them
Many people start their job hunt by applying for jobs that they think will be right for them or they ‘panic apply’ for jobs.
The problem here is that there are around 1200 different graduate job titles out there so if you are unsure of what you want to do, it can be very overwhelming.
Here at Graduate Coach, we highly recommend that before you even send out a single application that you take some time to identify your transferable skills and career typology.
We help our candidates on our coaching program to do this with the help of our online course called “discover your career path”.
By the end of this course, candidates will be able to:
Confidently list their skills
Identify the experiences that have given them transferable skills
Explain the graduate job market and the key attributes all grad recruiters look for in candidates
Understand their career typology and know what jobs are suitable for them And more
By the end of this process, you’ll be able to pinpoint the graduate job titles/roles that are aligned to your skillset, interests and ambitions.
2. They haven’t put together an achievement-based CV
Writing your graduate CV can be quite tricky, especially if you haven’t yet gained much or any work experience.
Regardless of how much work experience you have, it is vital that you highlight the skills you have gained from the experiences you have had – even if this is from your academics, unpaid work experience or extracurricular activities.
The aim is to create a CV that ticks enough boxes so that the graduate recruiter simply must interview you.
We have put together a really useful document on how to create an achievement-based CV. It is available to download as a PDF from our website on the recourses page. We highly recommend that you read it! For even more guidance on how to write an achievement-based CV and to see several examples of excellent graduate CVs, read chapter 6 (page 69) of The Student Book.
As part of our full graduate career coaching program, we not only help candidates to create an excellent CV and cover letter, but we also teach them the art and science of doing so, as we recognise that knowing how to do so is a life-long skill.
3. They are not preparing for interviews adequately
Did you know that people only spend on average 36 minutes preparing for their interviews?
This is not enough.
We find that most of the graduates we coach are not confident about interviews unless they have done activities like drama or have been to theatre school.
The reason why most people are so unconfident about interviews is that they have never been taught the science and art of interviewing and have never refined their interview technique.
Most graduate positions require you to take one or more different types of interview as part of the application process:
Unfortunately, many of the candidates who come to us after failing several interviews have started to lose confidence in themselves. This has a negative impact on their interview performance because being able to convey confidence to the interviewer is a must. Think of it this way – if you aren’t confident in yourself, why should the interviewer be?
Like being able to write excellent CVs and cover letters, being able to perform well in interviews is a very important lifelong skill.
Being able to clearly articulate that you have the skills employers are looking for and confidently demonstrate your aptitude for the job is very important.
These are the main 3 reasons why graduates struggle to find a job after university.
If you are in this situation, the key is to try not to beat yourself up about it. We find that many of the graduates who come to us have never received proper careers advice or that the support they got from using a career service in the past was not enough.
Whilst it may be disappointing that you put so much time and money into pursuing a degree with the hopes that it would help you to get a graduate job there are still several actions you can take to get yourself on the career ladder.
What to do if you are struggling to find a job after university
The short answer is to get help. There’s no need to struggle alone. Here at Graduate Coach, we have help available regardless of what you studied, where you studied and what your budget is.
If you are struggling to find a job after university there’s no point continually sending out applications and hoping that you’ll eventually get lucky.
The right help can accelerate your job search and help you to get the right job for you.
Book a FREE career consultation with us here at Graduate Coach and we will put together a bespoke career coaching plan and outline exactly how we can help you to get a graduate-level job.