ICYMI: Our top tips for students to make sure you make the most out of attending University Careers Fairs

The round of autumn 2017 careers fairs for Gradsouthwest kick off next week at the University of Exeter and the University of the West of England (UWE) in Bristol, so we thought it timely to re-issue our blog post from earlier this year: “Our top tips for students to make sure you make the most out of attending University Careers Fairs“.

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Graduating this summer and not got a job yet? Don’t panic!

 

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Graduating this summer and not got a job yet? Don’t panic!

 

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.

  1. 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.

  1. 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!

  1. 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.

  1. 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!)

  1. Need a few pointers?

Have a look at our CV and covering letter advice to get you going!

 

Dr Deborah Watson

Director, Gradsouthwest

It’s Over! What you can learn from Candice and the Great British Bake Off…

Can Candice bake like Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood? Does she get it right every time? Does she stop being ambitious (remember that peacock)? Does she give up when it all goes wrong?

It’s a resounding ‘no’ to to all of the above. It’s why we love her. And why, if you can emulate her approach, recruiters will love you too.

So, what can you learn from GBBO winner Candice? Here’s our take….

#1        Respect experience

Candice is an outstanding baker. But she can’t trump Mary and Paul. At least not yet. You can be excellent – and still have room for improvement. Know this at every stage of your career, and more importantly, show you know it.

#2        Take feedback

Honest feedback can hurt.  It doesn’t mean you’re not brilliant. It just means that, if you listen and learn, you can be more brilliant. Listen, hear, take notes and be gracious.  Cry later if you need to – but do take it on board and act on it.

#3        Go for it

If we could tell you just one thing, it would be to GO FOR IT. When Candice applied to GBBO, she didn’t think she’d win. She had no idea of the standard required and the competition she would face but she applied anyway. You should do the same. See a job you like the look of? APPLY. Most people won’t – they’ll focus on the things required that they don’t have. If you can meet most (not all – that’s an ‘ideal’) of the criteria – and show willing – you stand a really good chance. Be brave. Be bold. Go for it.

We wish you luck. And if you need inspiration for your graduate career, head over to Gradsouthwest.com for lots of SW graduate jobs with companies that value graduate skills.

Charlotte Weston

Charlotte is a graduate with many years’ experience in both large and small organisations. She now works as a consultant to a range of SMEs across the south west and is a Non-Executive Director of Gradsouthwest.

Our 2015 Highlights

2015 was a momentous year for Gradsouthwest with the management buy-out of the service in June 2015 ensuring the continuation of this well respected service for graduates and employers.  Initially founded in 2001 by SW university careers departments, the service is now run by a small group of experienced graduates and still enjoys the support of universities in the south west peninsula.

Over the summer of 2015 we launched this blog to enable us to share our experience with both graduates looking for jobs and employers wanting to recruit.  We hope you find it useful.  Our most popular post was “Why graduate training schemes are seen as the gold standard. And why you should re-think.”  Click on the link to read it if you missed it first time.

September 2015 saw the redevelopment of the platform meaning that our tried and tested service to match great graduates with great jobs got better:

Better for candidates
Great jobs for recent graduates plus:
– Job browsing open to all
– Use social media to register
Upload your CV to get in front of recruiters
– Apply online with one-click applications
– Manage your applications online

Better for recruiters
Unlimited access to graduate talent plus:
– Higher visibility for your vacancy
– More candidates
– New CV database – browse before you buy
– Alerts when new talent registers
– Streamlined Post a Job and payment options

Our closely targeted approach focuses on quality and relevance – and it works!  On average each vacancy receives 6 quality applications.

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We’re passionate about what we do and we’ll go the extra mile to help so talk to us!

And finally, over 2015 we have continued to build our social media presence, and here are our year end stats:

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Let’s make 2016 a year of new opportunities, new jobs and new employees.  Happy browsing to all our candidates and recruiters – now go find each other!

Dr Deborah Watson
Director, Gradsouthwest Ltd.
Images from:
Piktochart

How social media can get you the employee / job you’ve always wanted…

When we asked our graduates and employers about social media usage we came up with a few differences of opinion that are worth sharing. Firstly, most of our employers are using Twitter and LinkedIn to look for new staff; whereas most of our students and graduates are using Facebook to look for jobs! If you’re not looking in the same place you won’t find each other… that’s why Gradsouthwest use all three 🙂

Both recruiters and job seekers now actively search out information on-line about the other… This is now a given, so clean up your profile and make it reflect how you’d want to be seen.

Job seekers – more employers are using social media then ever before to screen prospective employees.  Before sending that post you should really ask yourself “Do I really want my (future) employer to see that?” This means cleaning up your image and making yourself look professional and employable.

Recruiters – similarly, prospective employees know more about your business than ever before.  Job seekers will have checked your website, but also your corporate social media posts – or lack of them. This means making your company look like a great place to work. Your social media activity really does give prospective employees a flavour of your company culture, so make the most of it to recruit staff who match your aspirations.

Other social media tools, like instagram and snapchap, have yet to make it into recruitment mainstream, but with regular new social media arrivals we are always looking at how we can help you find each other!

Connect with Us: Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Deborah Watson, Director, Gradsouthwest Ltd.
http://www.gradsouthwest.com
https://uk.linkedin.com/in/deborahwatson