The Job Search: It's Not As Hard As You Think
The word ‘student’ is usually associated with the word ‘poor’, and it’s no wonder…
With so many text books, uni fees, essentials for living out of home and rent to pay, how can you avoid shallow pockets? Many of us are lucky enough to have financial assistance or help from our parents, and that’s fantastic! The more support you have to enable you to carry out your studies, the better. But many of us need that little bit of extra cash-in-pocket to get by, and that’s okay too.
Surprisingly, it can be quite difficult to get a job while studying that accommodates your university hours and other personal commitments, which is why we need to use the right tools to find something that’s right for us. Heaps of jobs become available over the summer period in Australia, when the holidays are looming and businesses need a few extra helping hands. This is the perfect time to get your foot in the door – if you work hard enough there is a possibility that employers will want to extend your summer contract to a more permanent position – that’s what we want!
First things first – when was the last time you updated your resume? If what followed that question was an awkward silence then you may need to get to work on it. Put your most relevant skills first and order the rest of your experience in chronological order, listing your most recent experience first – this saves your employer time and shows that you know what kind of experience is required for the job. If you’ve finished this step, well done! Now print a zillion and paint the town with ‘em!
So where do I start?
If you’re one for the new-age of the resume and want to make your web presence as professional and poised as your physical presence, give LinkedIn a try. Never heard of it? LinkedIn is a fantastic social network for people who want to upload their skills, work experience and job preference to one convenient location for employers to look at. You can follow companies you like or be approached directly by employers who like the look of your skills. Signing up is completely free! Check it out.
It can be a bit soul crushing if you’re just walking from shop to shop with a pile of resume’s only to be told: “Sorry, we’re not hiring.” A great place to start is to actually look for businesses who are advertising. We can apply for a million different positions that don’t exist, but that won’t get you an income and it certainly won’t be a good use of your spare time. Yes, it’s true that many of the most successful people in the world have created their own jobs, but if you’re just looking for some income to get you through uni, maybe save all that innovative passion for a later date.
So how do we know who is advertising? Lots of local businesses will put signs in shop windows, advertise in their local paper or send out emails to their mailing list, but if you’re strapped for time there is definitely a better way. Nowadays almost all businesses will be listing their job vacancies online. Job search engines are definitely the most efficient way to get your resume circulating. Here’s a breakdown of some great sites for job searching.
Pedestrian.TV is a fantastic online pop-culture hub that targets young adults, so you could say they know what kind of jobs uni students will be after. Sign up for their weekly job newsletter and get job vacancies delivered right to your inbox! Their job search engine is built into their already thriving website, and you can find it here.
Most of you will have heard of this one, as it is most definitely the number one search engine in Australia for jobs. Search by location, classification, income bracket or keywords to get exactly the results you’re after. Not only do Seek list jobs, but they also have courses listed to build on your skills for the workforce or volunteer positions to make that resume look really good! Check out Seek here.
The Loop is a great site for the creative types out there who want to land a job in the industry. There aren’t as many listings, as the site is narrowed down to only the creative and digital industry, but they post everything from graphic design to copywriting jobs, so create a profile and keep an eye on their feed!
Career One is similar to Seek in that you can filter your search by location or keywords. Follow companies you’re interested in and create a free account to stay in the loop with what’s happening in the job market! See their website here.
JobActive is another great search engine with a variety of listings. Search by location and keywords to really optimise your search and find what you’re looking for. Take a look here.
What to expect
Job hunting can be time consuming, frustrating and tedious if you’re not looking in the right places. If you update your resume, keep an eye on your web presence and search the sites you’re bound to be noticed sooner or later! There are going to be heaps and heaps of students in the same boat as you, and if you don’t get hired straight away, it’s not unlikely that you’ll get a little frustrated…
Our best advice? Keep your cool. If you start to get down in the dumps about getting knocked back, you’re confidence will wane and it will show in your next job interview. It’s best to just dust yourself off, and maybe even ask the employer what you could improve on for your next interview, their advice is invaluable!