The study and exams are finally over, and you are now thinking about your next steps. Whether that is postgraduate study, or a move into the jobs market, you know it is time to focus on the future.
Here are our top reasons you shouldn’t worry about not having a job lined up by graduation day.
You have time to focus now
By waiting until after you finish to secure that job of your dreams you are now able to put proper energy into your job quest. Finding the right opportunities, crafting your applications and attending interviews all take time. Time you now have to focus on your job search.
Graduate jobs are available all year round
The big ‘grad schemes’ may recruit each autumn for starts the following year – but the majority of employers recruit when a vacancy arises, and that can be at any time!
Just look at www.gradsouthwest.com to see jobs for recent graduates in the South West available right now!
Many employers want immediate starts
Applying now that you are available for work, and being ready to start straight away is a positive for employers. They don’t have to wait on you finishing your studies.
Get experience and test out ideas
If you’re not sure what to do, this time once you have finished your exams is perfect to explore your options: spend time volunteering; do part-time / temporary work in different fields or sectors; travel; learn what you want to do; and gain valuable experience to boost your CV. And then when you are ready to apply for positions on your chosen career path you will have the focus you need to secure your ideal role. (Don’t forget you can always change your mind… people have multiple portfolio careers nowadays!)
With the appearance of snow and sunshine, our day at the University of Bath’s Recruitment Fair on Tuesday 26th April was a similar mix. Although some final year students were busy completing their dissertation, those that attended the fair were well prepared for seeking employment.
Students from all disciplines came to visit us on the day, including many Masters students due to finish in September. It was also fantastic to meet some of the companies advertising graduate jobs with Gradsouthwest including Hilti, AECOM, SelectScience and Antech as well as companies we have helped in the past including Dyson, PWC and Sparx.
One frequent question from international students was whether our clients provide sponsorship. With many international students due to graduate in the next few months, they would like to use their knowledge and skills in the local area but were concerned over the ability to get sponsorship and this is an issue affecting many international students.
Gradsouthwest advised those students from the University of Bath that the ability for a company to sponsor will vary. Many of the larger graduate recruiters will have the time and resource to provide sponsorship whereas many smaller companies will not have the resource and expertise. We would advise international students to search the graduate jobs available and on finding a job of interest, to check the job description. If there is no information about sponsorship, then visit the recruiter’s website. Many corporate companies that run annual graduate programmes will have this information available on their careers website. Where information about sponsorship is not available then we would advise contacting the graduate recruiter directly.
We would encourage graduate recruiters to make sponsorship information apparent in their job adverts.
Speaking to students and graduates is one of the great things about working with Gradsouthwest. Having spent last Friday at the University of Exeter’s Creative, Public and Third Sector Careers Fair we were mulling over the many conversations we had with students and a few things sprung out as worthy of a blog post.
Messages for Employers:
1. Students are actively thinking about their careers from the earliest stages of University. We spoke to many first year students, who still have at least two to three years at University, but they were at the Careers Fair seeking information about the jobs available locally: summer placements, longer internships and permanent jobs for when they graduate. We’d certainly encourage employers to consider offering more summer placements and internships: they are a great way for the employer to get an extra pair of hands and some fresh eyes/new ideas and for the students to get real experience. Summer placements and internships can be seen as a long job interview and can lead to permanent employment at graduation when both the employer and student hit it off.
2. Many of the students were heading towards dissertation deadlines in the run up to Easter… so we think employers need to give plenty of time on their closing dates at the moment to enable applicant’s to do a good job on their applications. Recruiters: if you want to add a couple of weeks to your job advert with us, we’ll do our bit to help you and our students and will add the extra time for free. Just tell us if you want us to add an extra couple of weeks.
Messages for students:
3. Lots of the students we spoke to were unaware of the great opportunities for recent graduates to work in the South West. When we showed them the jobs currently available they were pleasantly surprised. Many students wanted to remain local, but didn’t know if it would be possible – it is! We recommended registering with Gradsouthwest to get a better feel for the local graduate jobs market.
4. A few of those we spoke to really didn’t know what they wanted to do upon graduation. We recommended thinking about the things they love, the skills they have (or want to develop) and the type of work they’d like to do. We also recommended looking at what types of graduate jobs were currently available, what employers were seeking in terms of skills and experience, and thinking about what they could do before they graduate to fill the gaps.
So if you are a student considering a career here in the South West then we would recommend you register for our job alerts. This way you will get a feel for the employers and the types of jobs available in your chosen field. And if you haven’t chosen your field yet, keep the search wide and use the job alerts as a way to test what is out there – something you see may inspire you!
Finally, we wish all those we spoke to graduating this summer all the very best in their finals and imminent job search – good luck!