How to find the perfect job after you graduate

You’ve spent years working towards your degree, and all that hard graft has nearly paid off. Taking those final few steps as a student and getting ready to find your first job as a graduate is a daunting task. With employers recruiting directly, multiple job board postings, recruitment agencies and plenty of competition it’s important to be goal focused and start to make your career a priority.

Here are some tips for making the process easier and ensuring you can secure the right job for you:

Research what’s going to be right for you

Although your degree is over, it’s much the same in the way you need to start with research. Think about and look into what the ideal first role for you is. Is the role sales, marketing, office support etc? Where will it be based? What industry sectors interest you? Think about what is most important to you.  Consider what don’t you want to compromise on, and start building a profile of the types of roles you’d like to apply for.

Craft a CV/cover letter

Putting together your CV can be difficult if you haven’t done one before, or if you don’t have any experience to put on there. Keep it clear and concise starting with a personal profile, moving into any employment history, education and then your hobbies and interests. If the degree you’ve completed is relevant to the role you’re applying for pull that up to the top of your CV. It’s a good idea to put together a template cover letter that you can tailor for each application. Make sure this demonstrates suitability, transferable skills and relevance for the job you’re applying for. Here are some further tips on writing a winning CV

Register with a recruiter

Find a recruiter who specialises in the area you’re looking to get into. If you aren’t sure what you want to do register with a couple of agencies and sign up for temporary work. This will buy you some time, get some experience on your CV and get some money coming in! You’ll also be exposed to different companies, industries and office cultures and this may help shape your thought process for your longer-term move. Use the recruiter for market advice, salary expectations and support through the job hunting process.

Register your CV/online profile

Create online profiles with job boards such as, CV Library, Total Jobs etc. It would also be beneficial to sign up to industry specific boards. Take time to craft your profile so it’s clear to potential employers what you’re looking for so that you don’t get bombarded with the wrong type of opportunities.

Get any experience you can

If you’re lacking in commercial work experience there are some options available. You could temp as mentioned earlier. You could offer yourself as a volunteer to gain some work experience in a company/industry of interest and you should look at your network. Who do you know – family, friends etc – is there anyone within your network that can offer you an opportunity, or act as an introducer to get you through the door with a specific business?

Clean up your social media

Some employers will check any social media profiles linked to you and so it’s important that you cleanse what’s publicly available to see. You don’t want to jeopardise a potential job opportunity by sharing something that could shine a bad light on you. Also, at this point you most likely don’t have a LinkedIn profile, but in the world of employment and networking for opportunities it’s key. When setting your profile up keep in mind that this is a professional social network. Therefore, choose a professional picture and ensure all content is business related. You can use LinkedIn to build a network by connecting with relevant professionals in companies you’re interested in.  Be proactive! Here are some further graduate hints and tips

Prepare for that all-important interview!

When you’ve got an employers interest and you’ve been invited in for an interview prepare, prepare, prepare! Interviews can be a daunting experience but check out our graduate advice article on interview preparation here

Stay positive and take ownership of your career journey! Your plan might change along the way, but with focus and determination you will get there! For further graduate job search advice call one of our specialist recruitment team on 0114 3211873 or email your CV to

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