Five key tips for graduates starting their careers amid COVID-19
Everyone has been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic in one way or another. But for students and those graduating amid the crisis, it’s understandable that they think the outlook feels particularly bleak.
According to a survey of more than 2,500 university students and over 100 graduates by the careers site Milkround and Dig-In, three quarters (75%) feel that the ongoing situation around COVID-19 will heavily impact their future career prospects.
Only 18% of students graduating this year have secured jobs and 60% of those are worried their position will be affected. Internships have also taken a hit too, with many being terminated because of the current circumstances.
Although things are certainly difficult at the moment, it’s still possible to find a job and get started on your career. So what should you bear in mind if you are graduating soon or have finished your degree?
Of course, this is easier said than done. The job market might look very different at the moment, but companies are still hiring.
Although many businesses have been forced to put recruitment drives on hold, the ISE has revealed only a quarter (27%) of companies will be recruiting fewer graduates this year — which shows there is still demand.
“Students should be reassured there are still various well-renowned companies looking for ambitious entry-level talent, to join their business and help deliver change. Most notably, the education, medical, accounting, IT and engineering, as well as the public sector are amongst the industries still continuing to hire,” says Georgina Brazier, jobs expert at Milkround.
Some sectors will be much harder hit than others. We know the travel industry is struggling, so there will be fewer graduate schemes and job openings.
Use spare time to your advantage
You may well have a little more time on your hands now, so using this productively can give you a real edge.
Use this time to think outside the box when it comes to working out what companies you want to work for. For example if you did finance, every industry requires people in finance, or if you did computer science, don’t just limit yourself to tech. Research other sectors as there are some really exciting jobs out there.
Flexibility is also key. If you’re flexible about the entry level this can give you a that foot in the door which allows you to prove yourself and move onwards and upwards into your career goals.
Keep applying for jobs
It can feel futile when you know lots of other graduates are applying for positions too, but it’s important to keep sending out applications and working on your CV.
Normality will resume and when it does, if you have made applications you will be ahead of the curve. For summer placements, it would be worth investing a little more time to apply to a few extra and give yourself the best chance. Remember to stay optimistic. At Kingsgate, we work with some fantastic clients who are looking to recruit talented graduates like you. Get in touch with our team to discuss what you’re looking to get out of your career.
Prepare for online interviews
Online and video interviews via Zoom and Skype are going to form a big part of companies hiring processes for the foreseeable future, so it’s worth bearing this in mind.
Online interviews require a slightly different approach than a face to face. As with anything, practice makes perfect. If you can take the time to have a run through with friends it will take away some of the nerves.
READ MORE: How to maximise your job search from home
Keep building your networks
According to the UK tech job board CWJobs, business networking has thrived during the pandemic, with two-fifths (40%) of UK office workers having attended a virtual networking event during isolation. The most popular platforms Brits are using to grow and expand their network of contacts include Zoom (38%), Skype (35%) and even WhatsApp (32%).
Networking can be overwhelming, but it can be really helpful. Speak to friends and family, friends of friends and more to find out who can help you. You never know when an opportunity will come up.
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Source: Yahoo Finance