Transitioning from university to a working life is daunting – after spending three years or more attending lectures and seminars, writing essays and dissertations, having plenty of spare time on your hands (for some) – it’s difficult to imagine how life will be afterwards.
In essence, you’ve taken a big chunk of life studying a subject that you chose years ago, probably hoping that it will put you in good stead to pursue a career in a particular field or industry. After you’ve graduated, or potentially even before that, you may have realised it’s not for you, and that you want to branch further afield… or even into the unknown.
I had multiple jobs throughout university, developing my knowledge and building my expertise in marketing, PR, and journalism. Given my experience in these fields, I thought I knew what I’d like to pursue my career in once I graduated – doesn’t everybody? If you’re passionate about something, and especially if you’re good at something, what would be better than to make it your living?
Here’s my situation: I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Sussex in summer 2017 and wanted to continue living in Brighton. I quickly landed myself a marketing role at a small firm, but I felt that I needed a change. I wanted to take my first step on the career ladder.
A couple of months ago, I began to job hunt in London – the capital, which is host to uncountable opportunities. It’s competitive, yes, but that’s just how job hunting goes. I was open in my search and wanted a role that would offer me growth. When it comes to searching, you may be worrying about the experience you have or thinking about how your CV compares to the thousands of others that have also recently graduated. There is a lot to think about but, what’s important, is to remember that you’re still young, and you’ve still got plenty of time to work out what you want to do.
I sent out applications for a variety of roles, but nothing had really stuck. With my previous experience being in PR, marketing and journalism, I came across a role here at Ruder Finn. I applied, interviewed and got the job! The process was swift and only took around three weeks from application to job offer. I am a Junior Account Executive in the Internal Communications team; the role complements my skill set, gained from my degree and past work experience, and will undoubtedly allow me to develop and grow as an individual, especially with the relocation to London.
Perseverance, drive and an open mind can lead you into the perfect start to your career. There are so many career paths to go for; be open to roles that complement your skill set or that can help develop your skills.
Here are a few top tips of mine, when it comes to graduate job hunting:
- Constantly be on the lookout – new jobs are being posted every single day
- Don’t get down – just because you weren’t shortlisted for one job, doesn’t mean that there’s not another one right around the corner that’s even more suitable for you
- Take your time applying – developing a tailored cover letter and adapting your CV to a particular job you are applying for will make you stand out from the crowd
- Be open – there are so many different careers to pursue and many that you probably didn’t even know about. Go for something that interests you, suits your skill set and that will develop your ability