First impressions count, a lot. It may be superficial, but we humans form opinions of people and things almost instantly. The impression we form in those first few seconds can influence our opinion long after we have learned more information.
The dating app Tinder is based entirely on this aspect of human psychology. A quick glance at a profile picture and then swipe right on someone’s profile to indicate that you’d like to get to know more about them, or swipe left to pass and move onto the next person.
Reading resumes is similar. Studies have shown that recruiters spend just 6 seconds making a decision about a resume. That’s not enough time to read everything you’ve so carefully written, so a lot of it comes down to visual appeal.
It looks convenient, doesn’t it? A single button on a job search website which will fire off your resume off at the click of a button. It allows you to apply for dozens of jobs in the time it takes to eat your cornflakes in the morning.
But clicking that button is possibly the worst thing you can do for your chances of success. It’s essentially a self-destruct button for job applications.
LinkedIn is more than a social network.
It’s also a career development tool you can use to:
- network with clients and colleagues
- research career options
- discuss and share ideas
- develop your personal brand
- search for jobs… and much more.
LinkedIn is free to use although you’ll need to take out a subscription if you want to access more advanced features. It is possible to get plenty of benefits out of a free LinkedIn account without paying any additional fees. Continue reading
There’s a wealth of information online that can help you to:
• look at jobs in your field and select roles that match your qualifications, skills and interests
• conduct research and create a strong job application that shows how your skills, experience and interests match the requirements of a specific role and organisation
• demonstrate that you are the best person for the role at an interview.
Key websites to enhance your research
You can use these sites to identify companies you might work for and do some background research.
- La Trobe University Library—the business analysis guide has a number of resources such as annual reports, newspapers and magazines.
- IbisWorld—search for companies by industry here.
- Australian Stock Exchange—download a list of all listed companies.
- Australian Government Graduate Programs
- Victorian Public Service
- Graduate Opportunities—this website includes informative booklets about work in specific sectors.
- UniGrad—website and guide
- Grad Connection—website and forum
Company websites are a great resource
Many organisations list job vacancies on their websites, sometimes before (or instead) of advertising externally. You can find a lot of useful information on employers’ own website. For instance, they might include detailed eligibility criteria and their own tips for successful applications.
Once you have a list of employers to research, begin by reviewing their graduate web pages. Take a look at graduates’ stories or watch ‘a day in a life of a graduate’ videos to help determine whether a specific program is for you. Referring to these sources in your applications will add credibility to your reasons for applying.
Monitor specific websites to get a sense of which companies are recruiting regularly and to get a sense of recruitment patterns. Make sure you also look beyond information generated by the organisation itself and get some alternative perspectives.
1. Make a list of companies you would like to work for and check their vacancies section regularly. See if you can create a job alert and have the company email you when suitable jobs arise.
2. Tap into professional associations—search for associations related to your study or interest areas. Many professional associations advertise relevant job vacancies to members on their web or social media sites. Increasingly, jobs are also sent to members of online professional networks such as LinkedIn groups. Consider registering to receive e-newsletters or mail-outs from professional associations in your field. You’ll find listings of professional associations at the Graduate Careers Australia website.
3. Research and bookmark websites you will use to search for advertised jobs in your industry.
4. Consider which professional associations it will be worthwhile joining.
Many graduates find jobs through online advertisements or listings but this is by no means the only way to find a graduate job. Statistics from 2012 show that an equal percentage of jobs (26%) were found through networks such as family, friends, work contacts and university contacts (e.g. lecturers). Continue reading
Job search or employment websites can be very useful if you are planning your career or about to start looking for work. You can research occupations, organisations which are hiring, skills and requirements needed for different jobs, and a variety of other information useful in preparing you for your future career. Continue reading
Informational interviews are an excellent way to find out about specific jobs and career pathways first-hand. Once you’ve researched career options related to your degree and read occupational information for jobs that you are interested in, this is the next step. It’s about approaching people who work in the occupations you’re interested in, to gain on-the-job perspectives. Continue reading