Growing up it was always drummed into you that you will need to do well in school and go to university if you want to live a good life. You are led to believe that once you complete your studies you will get a well paying job automatically and start to live the life you want.
However, after graduation, reality tends to set in and all those dreams fly out the window for some people.
This is because the promised jobs are nowhere to be found and you are stuck job searching for years. This means that most people end up going back to school to do a different course or get a masters degree.
In this article see some of the things you could be doing wrong and how to improve your job search process.
Here are some of the mistakes graduates make when job hunting
- Applying only for jobs that you are skilled in
Most times you are told to apply only for jobs you qualify for but this doesn’t mean that you don’t apply for jobs where you only miss a few skills.
Take for example, if you don’t have knowledge in Excel and a Diploma in Communication yet the job requires that you do, you can still apply for the job if all you are missing is knowledge in Excel.
Some companies are willing to train new employees if they think they are good enough and as such you might end up getting the job.
So don’t limit yourself when it comes to making job applications but you also have to be realistic and honest with yourself.
- Ignoring low paying jobs
A common mistake graduates make is only applying for well paying jobs. This is mostly because they want to live a good life and the fact that in school you are always told that studying will get you a well paying job. The problem with this is everyone has to start somewhere and some have to start lower than others.
You need to be willing to gain experience first because that is what will determine your pay. You cannot expect to be paid the same as someone with 3 years experience yet you have none. You need to earn it, so you have to be willing to work hard to prove you deserve the high pay.
- Using the same cover letters
This cannot be stressed enough; you need to stop using the same cover letter for every job application you make.
You need to tailor your cover letter to fit the job and organisation you are applying to. This is because every job advert is different even if they are for the same position. What one organisation is looking for might be different from what another one is looking for.
By sending the same cover letter for each you are not really showing the company how you qualify for that particular job and the recruiter will notice this which ruins your chances of getting the job.
- Not preparing for the interviews
This is one of the biggest mistakes graduates make when job hunting. It is completely unacceptable to go into an interview blank. You need to have done your research and practised your answers to the very common interview questions.
Before walking into any interview you need to have proper research on the company be it what it does, its products etc and you also need to ensure you are up to date on the latest trends in your field of profession.
You need to have an idea of what your answers to the common interview questions will be. this does not mean that you give robotic answers you spent cramming but you have a general idea of what you want to say.
You need to show the interviewer that you are the best candidate for the job and this can only be done if you are well prepared.
- You don’t want to relocate
This is sometimes a touchy subject for some people. Are you willing to leave your home and friends for a job? If you have ever turned down a job just because of the location then you need to become more flexible.
In the current job market getting a job is not easy, you should therefore, take any chance to gain experience as long as it is safe and it makes sense. You need to be smart when it comes to deciding because you might be missing out on a great opportunity.
- Accepting the very first job offer
Another common mistake graduates make when job hunting is running to take the very first job offer they get. Sometimes this offer isn’t really the best but because you do not want to be jobless any longer you end up taking it.
It is always better to consider your options especially if you have interviewed for various positions. You never know, a better offer might just come up and you will very happy that you waited. You need to be careful though and only do this within a reasonable time frame.
Remember, this is the time for you to discover what you want and what your skills are you should therefore be open minded and don’t give up even though you have been jobless for a while. Job hunting is never easy and you should be prepared to put in work, however, if done correctly you will not have to stay jobless for very long.