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8 ways for students to increase employability after lockdown

21 Jul 2020

Coronavirus has unquestionably had a huge impact on most of our lives, with students being hit hard. From exams, gap year plans and summer jobs being cancelled we now approach what would have been the usual start of the six week summer holidays still with uncertainty.

As life slowly begins to move towards the new normal, here is a list of 8 things you can do to place yourself in the best position to bounce back after lockdown.

1. Sharpen your CV

We all know how long and daunting the task of writing a CV can be, but they are absolutely crucial to showing an employer who you are and what you’re capable of. A strong CV is the perfect way land an interview and secure a job. With the prospect of fewer employment opportunities in the near future, having a strong CV will straight away make you stand out and progress to the next stage of employment.

Set aside just 1 hour of your day and dedicate that time to going over your CV. Use the wide array of tips and advice available online and one of our videos to make your CV 10/10.

2. Practise interviews at home

Interviews can be tricky at the best of times and with all this time off you may be rusty. A helpful tip is to grab a member of your household or a friend (social distancing of course) and get them to ask you some interview questions. Ask them for feedback on what you are doing well and responses you could improve on. When it comes to landing yourself with the real interview, you should feel much more relaxed and prepared; all key to nailing the interview and getting the job!

3. Have a look at what is out there

We are all guilty from time to time of having tunnel vision, being set on one thing and failing to acknowledge anything else. The exact same thing can happen when job searching or thinking of career prospects. Coronavirus may have ruined many of our plans, particularly hopes of securing a job and earning over the past few months but there are many jobs out there which may not have crossed your mind. Our blog back in March listed a variety of alternative jobs you can take on, with a handful being from the comfort of your own home.

4. Enrol on an online course

Chances are that you still have much more free time on your hands than you did before lockdown, even as restriction are eased further. Make the most of this time and spend some either learning a new skill or refining a current skillset with an online course.

Websites such as Skillshare , Udemy and LinkedIn Learning provide you with a vast library of courses covering a host of different skills you can learn from the comfort of your own home. Although a subscription is sometimes required, many offer free trials giving you plenty of time to do a desired course or even multiple!

It is the perfect opportunity if you’re hoping to bolster your personal statement, or you’re planning to apply for a part time job, apprenticeship or internship over the next few months and want to stand out against other candidates.

5. Start a LinkedIn profile

As LinkedIn continues to grow and grow in popularity, now is a great time to make yourself active on the platform. Similar to the likes of Facebook and Instagram, you can set up a LinkedIn profile in a matter of minutes and begin connecting with your peers and business professionals. Your LinkedIn profile can be really helpful when applying for jobs as you can add far more information about your employment and education history than you can on your CV.

Check out the Employment 4 Students LinkedIn page for further blogs, news articles and career advice.

6. Make a list of your target and goals

It might sound silly as you normally use lists for shopping, but they can be a great way to visualise what you want to or have achieved. Either on your phone notes page or using pen and paper, make yourself a short list of the things you want to achieve both over the coming weeks/months and where you want to be in 12 months’ time. Similar to New Years’ Resolutions, now is the perfect opportunity to ‘reset’ and give yourself some clear goals to work towards and make yourself not only more employable but feel better.

7. Speak out if you are unsure

We have lost a lot of precious time over the past few months which many would have used to seek careers advice. Don’t wait until everything gets back to normal and you are back in the classroom or university lecture theatre, contact or head to your careers service website who are still there to answer your queries and give you their advice. We also have help and advice sections on our website for all types of jobs so be sure to check it out.

8. Keep your spirits up

Job hunting can feel relentless and frustrating, especially if you’re getting rejections or not hearing back at all. Try to focus on the positives and connect with friends to share ideas and experiences. You will get there!

Student Podcast – Your Career Kit

Looking for top student tips and career advice? Listen to our student podcast, Your Career Kit, where we are joined by a range of fantastic guests, ranging from CEO’s, Olympic Athletes and The Apprentice winners. We are live on both Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

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