For students the prospect of beginning the search for a graduate job can appear daunting. You may have an idea of potential companies you would like to apply to but how do you grow this list to include the best opportunities – even those that are not advertised? Here’s how expand your target list when searching for a graduate job:
1. Create a list of the leading companies within your chosen industry
Now that you have chosen your industry, jot down those companies that first come to mind when you consider your dream graduate job. Use these companies to create a list of things that appeal to you about them. This list of traits can then be used to identify other companies that are similar and allow you to expand your list as the search goes on.
2. Attend networking events and conferences
Your university careers service will hold events which will allow you to meet employers and develop skills related to enhancing your employability . Attending as many of these as possible will build your list of contacts and researching guest speakers and companies that will be attending can prove invaluable once you come to introducing yourself at the networking part of the event.
3. Make the most of LinkedIn
LinkedIn will be very handy as you progress throughout your academic career. Use this resource to research what is happening within the company and industry of your choice. You will slowly begin to learn which companies particularly appeal to you. Further, join your University Alumni Page once you have graduated to keep up to date with where your fellow students are employed and use this opportunity, if they work for a company of interest, to ask for advice and tips for submitting an application.
4. Find companies within your area of geographical interest
Start by using a search engine to look for local companies within your area of interest. This list will be extensive and will bring up companies you may not have previously considered but can now be added to your list. If you have the time, you could venture down and explore the area in person. You could realise one of your target company’s has a branch located in your area. Further, by getting to know the area, this could ease the pressure of settling into your new surroundings in the long term.
5. Extend your passions
If you have a particular passion or interest which is very close to your heart, such as a charity or campaign, it could be worth looking for companies who share these with you. For example, if charitable causes are a keen interest of yours, you could research companies through their CSR initiatives. A company’s social media channels are a good place to look for this.
6. Stay up-to-date with industry news
Use industry news websites to keep up to date with what is happening within the industry. This could open up new doors to companies who are hiring and will also keep you in a strong position when you come to answer those tricky interview questions during the application process.
7. Research those companies that are expanding their operations
Look for indications of companies that are looking to expand. For example: Look for an organisation that has just won new business or for a company hoping to open an office in a new location. This implies that these companies will be looking to hire new people in the near future. Doing the preparation early will put you one step ahead of the other candidates.
Remember, the list will be a continuous work in progress and it is important to remain open-minded when it comes to applying for positions. With persistence and dedication, you may find a graduate job opportunity at the time and in a place you least expect .