Sometimes it feels as though there is just not enough time in the day to get everything done, so it’s easy to put things off and find distractions. Particularly if they seem, let’s be honest, a little bit daunting or feel like hard work.
Job hunting can often fall into this category, which can feel overwhelming and can be tough to know where or how to start. It’s also especially easy to put off if you are not sure what you want to do / are nervous about interviews / are fearful about the job market or leaving university….
Break it down
You wouldn’t expect to run a marathon without any preparation and the same can be applied to job hunting. Whilst securing a job might be your end goal, breaking down how you are going to get there will allow you to focus on one area at a time. This could be to update your CV, explore different job areas, fill out an application form, book a careers appointment etc….
Achieving small goals will help you feel like you are making progress and will keep you motivated. Having a plan will also help avoid wasting time deciding what to do, which often leads into a downward spiral of more procrastination…
Returning to the marathon example, set aside regular time to work on your job hunting activities. If possible, try and plan this for when you have the most energy and where you can focus. If you are not a morning person, browsing vacancies online or researching employers first thing is something you’ll probably find more draining and less productive.
By the same token, if you have worked a double shift at your part time job, completing a job application afterwards is likely to feel challenging. If at home you are tempted by the TV or possibility of making another cup of tea, considering going to your local library or somewhere quiet to work.
Be flexible and don’t give up
It can be really disheartening if you are searching for vacancies online and never see the jobs you want advertised. You could find that jobs in the industry you are interested in are not advertised online or that you are looking at the wrong type of website.
There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to job hunting, so use careers websites like Prospects (https://www.prospects.ac.uk/job-profiles) to find out how and where you should look for particular types of jobs.
It might be worth asking yourself though, whether you are not finding anything that interests you because you are not really sure about what you would like to do next? Or perhaps you are worried that won’t get the job if you apply, or that you won’t enjoy it if you get offered the role. These are common concerns we hear from students all the time.
- Getting work experience or temporary work can be a great way to build your skills, experience and confidence, which can be a stepping stone to other opportunities – try QTemps for part time and temporary roles.
- Be flexible and open minded about potential job roles. You might find that you would enjoy something that you had not considered before.
- Be persistent. It often takes a number of different applications before securing a role.
To discuss anything careers-related, you can book a one-to-one appointment by calling 020 7882 8533 or visiting the Queens’ Building WG3.