Seven tips that will get you a graduate job in 2017
If you’re graduating in 2017 you’ll be entering an unpredictable, fast-changing and competitive jobs market. Regardless of how the impact of Brexit plays out, you can be sure that employers will remain keen to recruit the best talent, and you can also expect to come up against new types of assessment as recruiters explore new ways of finding candidates with the skills they need.
We’ve put together a list of seven tips that highlight current recruitment trends and will help you maximise your chances of getting the graduate job or training scheme place you want. It goes without saying that if you haven’t done so already, you should sign up with TARGETjobs and upload your CV – that way we can bring the job hunt to you.
1. Get ready for video interviews
Video interviews are a big new trend in graduate recruitment and are now used by 42% of employers belonging to the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR), according to its most recent membership survey. That’s up from just 6% four years ago. If you’re invited to take part in an on-screen interview, you need to make sure you understand the system you are going to be using (for example, whether you will have limited time to answer questions). You should also check that both you and the background visible behind you look the part. You’ll find more advice in our expert tips on Skype and video interviews and our overview of how graduate recruiters use video interviews.
2. Be resilient
At times of uncertainty and change, resilience is an essential quality that will help you cope and keep going. Unsurprisingly, it’s in demand from graduate recruiters at present. Candidates who are resilient are more likely to have good problem-solving skills and self-awareness, and these skills are very attractive to employers; resilience will also help you through the ups and downs of the job hunting process. But how can you develop it? We have some suggestions in our advice on resilience, plus examples of interview questions designed to assess whether it’s a quality you can offer and an overview of the industries where resilience is regarded as particularly important.
3. Understand what your degree is worth and what you can do with it
Don’t underestimate the lifelong value of your achievement in getting a degree. Research suggests that it will help to protect you from upheaval in the job market; in the past, graduates have consistently been less likely to be unemployed during economic downturns than those without degrees. Use our advice to explore what you can do with your degree and the full range of career options open to you, whatever subject you studied. For example, did you know that graduates from all degree backgrounds can qualify for a career in law, or that you can take a subject knowledge extension course to help you qualify as a teacher?
4. Practise psychometric tests
Practice will reduce your nerves and improve your performance. Our advice explains about different types of psychometric test you might come across, from inductive reasoning tests to situational judgement tests. A range of free practice tests are available from Job Test Prep.
5. Arm yourself with information about employers
Wouldn’t it be great if you could find out what working for different employers is really like from those who are best placed to know – their employees? With our Inside Buzz reviews, you can. Before you apply for an internship or graduate scheme place, use Inside Buzz to find out if it’s going to be a good fit for your career aspirations.
6. Look forward to that first pay cheque
Money isn’t everything… but you might find it encouraging to check out the financial rewards on offer from top graduate recruiters. According to the Association of Graduate Recruiters, law firms offered the highest median graduate starting salary in 2015/16, at £38,000. You can find out more about starting pay in other professions from our advice on the graduate careers that pay the most.
7. Get the best degree you can – but if you get a 2.2, here’s how to make the most of it
While some employers specify that they want at least a 2.1, this is by no means true of all. Our advice on job hunting with a 2.2 lists employers in areas ranging from finance to the public sector who will welcome your application if you have a 2.2.