Whether you’re trying to find part-time work, looking for an internship or getting a position after graduation, job hunting can be a bit daunting. But never fear! We’re here to help.
What is job hunting?
Ultimately we meaning finding work in whatever form – full-time, part-time, permanent, temporary, internships, work experience etc. Learn to job hunt effectively for one kind of work (say a part-time job) and you will be able to use the same skills for other types (when you are then looking for a job after graduation, for example).
You may also think that we mean looking at vacancy websites – but there’s so much more to job hunting than that. It’s about finding work opportunities wherever they might be.
Where do I start?
Know what you want to do?
Then you are effectively doing a targeted, specific job hunt. You need to develop your industry understanding (known as commercial awareness)- find out as much as you can about how the industry works, the key companies (big and small) and how hiring is generally done. For example, jobs in finance are usually advertised on company websites and jobs boards, whereas finding work in the film industry is more common through networking and word-of-mouth.
Remember, companies have to pay for job advertisements, so large companies can afford to advertise on sites like Guardian Jobs, for example, but smaller ones may not be able to. Instead, those jobs will be found through networking and speculative applications (search our blog for ‘speculative applications‘ for more on this).
Have no idea what you’d like to do?
You need to spend a bit of time thinking and exploring your options. If you are looking for part-time work and are not really concerned what the job is, think about things like proximity to where you live, hours you want to work etc. For example, if you live on or near Mile End campus, you could look at Westfield Stratford City for a weekend sales position, or you could try Oxford Street for retail jobs, bar or restaurant work (less than 20 mins on the central line). The Students’ Union often has vacancies coffee shops, the gym etc on campus, but bear in mind that many of these positions may be filled before term starts.
In terms of graduate jobs, draw up a list of things that are important to you or you enjoy doing which can help you start to narrow down your job options.
- working with numbers
- being around lots of people
- know what I’ll be doing each day
- working in the same office
Internships and volunteering work are also great ways to test out these kind of things and learn what you like and dislike (with the added bonus that it looks great on your CV, whether it directly relates to your future career or not).
I need more help!
Take a look at these websites:
- JobOnline – a great place to look whether you know what you want or just want to explore what’s out there.
- Lots of tips and advice on job hunting, including downloadable resources.
- 20+ ways to gain work experience, on campus and in the local area.
- Lots of excellent information including a career planner which will give you some ideas on potential jobs that might suit your personality/work preferences.
Remember to keep your CV up-to-date, in case you need to send it to a recruiter at short notice. And don’t forget, you can make an appointment to talk things through with a Careers Consultant. Pop into the Careers & Enterprise Centre (Queens Building WG3) or call 020 7882 8533 to book.