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School of Arts (Post Graduate) Employability Adviser: Nicola Urquhart.

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Presentation on theme: "School of Arts (Post Graduate) Employability Adviser: Nicola Urquhart."— Presentation transcript:

1 School of Arts (Post Graduate) Employability Adviser: Nicola Urquhart

2 Introduction What is employability? Skills developed through postgraduate study Deciding what you want to do Where you can look for jobs Tips on CVs and applications Careers and Employability Service Questions

3 What is Employability? ‘A set of attributes, skills and knowledge that all labour market participants should possess to ensure they have the capability of being effective in the workplace – to the benefit of themselves, their employer and the wider economy.’ (CBI, March 2009)

4 Why are employability skills so important? Increased competition – over 400,000 graduates leaving university each year. ‘Our latest UK recruitment campaign closed having attracted The bank will offer 475 places in 2012.’ HSBC newsletter April 2012

5 What employers say… "Few students are able to articulate what they have gained from their experience in higher education." (Association of Graduate Recruiters, 1995)

6 Skills developed through postgraduate study Written communication Verbal communication Analytical ability Critical thinking Planning and organising Research/investigative skills Problem solving Maturity and confidence Self motivation

7 What do postgraduates do? “The vast majority of postgraduates enter employment at the end of their studies.” “Both doctoral and Masters degree graduates have a lower level of unemployment than Bachelors degree graduates and are more likely to be employed in a professional role”

8 What do you need to do. Decide on the job/sector you want to work in Research the sector and employers Apply Change your job-hunting methods if they are not working

9 Choosing a Career

10 Prospects Planner Prospects planner Identify what you want out of a job; generate new job ideas and check out your existing ones. Find out what motivates you in a job; identify your skills and what you can offer to the job/employer. See how these match the jobs you are considering. Research your chosen jobs in more detail, compare your options and decide on the right choices for you

11 Research options What can I do with my degree in Film Studies? What can I do with my degree in Drama? I want to work in the media I want to work in human rights

12 Where to look for jobs Directories Careers Fairs Job Centres Internet Newspapers Social media

13 Online sources Institute of Practitioners in Advertising Arts Administration - The Stage, Arts Management Weekly, Guardian (Mon & Sat) Times Higher Educational Supplement - good source of jobs in universities. Jobs in Higher Education Monster Jobs Guardian vacancies /www.jobs.guardian.co.uk /

14 Recruitment Agencies FASHION - George Ellis Recruitment MUSIC - Handle Recruitment ACCOUNTANCY - Hays Accountancy Personnel SECRETARIAL - Nice People Employment Bureau STOCKBROKING - Citifocus Ltd MEDIA – Jumpforward

15 Use your contacts from your work experience/course/friends Use social networking sites such as LinkedInLinkedIn Attend events, keep business cards and keep in contact Networking

16 What else can you do? Ask your friends Ask your relatives Ask your “network”

17 How can social media help with job search? Social Media: “an umbrella term that defines the various activities that integrate technology, social interaction, and the construction of words, pictures, videos, and audio.” Enabling conversations Facilitating discussions

18 Why use LinkedIn? Exploring career ideas Finding out about an employer and their competition Professional networking Opportunity to join groups For self marketing and increasing your visibility Asking for advice Staying in touch/reconnecting

19 Getting started - Networking You start by adding people you know in the “real world” Connect with others with similar interests or goals Explore 1 st and 2 nd degree connections

20 Useful information Training Videos:   - 6 step video to success New Users Starter Guide  Webinars: 

21 What is ? Twitter is a form of micro-blogging Twitter gives you 140 characters per ‘tweet’ to say what’s on your mind You can follow people/companies/ recruiters who interest you. Gather an audience

22 Ideas on who to follow: Companies/employers you are interested in working for Industry experts/bloggers Professional networks and industry/professional publications Job sites and job boards Recruiters / head-hunters / HR personnel who are hiring for the roles you're targeting Your

23 Some platforms to consider Linkedin Increase your awareness of the sector, link with potential recruiters Twitter Follow recruiters, twitjobsearch Blogging Demonstrate your commitment, business knowledge and passion.

24 What is the purpose of a CV? To inform the employer about your education, work experience, skills and interests To show how you meet the criteria so the employer can not deselect you To ‘sell’ your qualities and to persuade the employer to invite you to interview

25 Where can it go wrong… Too long Untargeted Confusing layout Process focused resulting in a ‘passive’ CV Incorrect grammar Incorrect spelling

26 Where can it go wrong … Out of date contact details Wrong application method No covering letter Application never reaches intended destination Application arrives late

27 Why you need to use a spell checker I am a prefectionist and rarely if if ever forget details. Proven ability to track down and correct erors. I have good writen comunication skills. Develop an annual operating expense fudget…

28 And why you must read it carefully as well Extra Circular Activities At secondary school I was a prefix Over summer I worked for an examinations bored. (Kent BA English graduate!) I hope to hear from you shorty I am a conscious individual. I have a desire to work with commuters Dear Madman (instead of Madam) My hobbits include - instead of 'hobbies'

29 What makes an effective CV and covering letter Right format Well presented Proof read/consistent tenses You have included all the necessary information Your skills and abilities are clearly evidenced Conveyed your understanding and enthusiasm for the job Targeted it to the job

30 Matching up your CV with the position/company It is not ‘one size fits all’, you need to tailor your CV to each position you apply for. Research the organisation. Do they have a mission statement or core values? What will they be looking for in you? Who works there at the moment? What are they passionate about?

31 What does your CV need to contain? Personal details Education and qualifications Work experience Skills Interests and additional information References

32 However don’t be constrained by headings. Scholarships/Awards Voluntary work Relevant experience Positions of responsibility Publication/Presentations Conferences attended Research skills Additional skills Languages

33 PRESENTATION OF YOUR CV (p.10) The first visual impression your CV makes is important Formatting – make sure it’s consistent Size font (depending on font style) Clear font e.g. Arial, Calibri Use plain white or pale A4 size paper Check spelling. Use bold type and bullet points, but in moderation Do not double side.

34 Hints on wording Avoid personal pronouns - No “I’s” Avoid producing a passive CV Start with verbs wherever possible Use short sentences & concise phrases Focus on accomplishments Refer to specific projects with quantifiable results

35 Make use of Action Verbs created instructed analysed produced negotiated designed calculated maintained administered controlled reviewed observed consolidated delivered founded increased studied invented supplied detected programmed recommended distributed developed solved prepared installed selected arranged formulated solved started

36 Covering letters Never send a ‘naked’ CV There are two types of covering letters: 1.Speculative 2.Letter of application

37 What about the covering letter? (P.24) One side of good quality A4 paper Formal/conventional layout Addressed to a named person State position applied for & where advertised Explain why applying Convince the reader of your interest & suitability Give dates when available/can start Sign off “Yours sincerely” (if sent to named person)

38 Research by forum3 found : Average graduate will send out 70 CVs when looking for their first graduate job. Average number of responses is 7 including 4 rejections and the remainder inviting the graduate to interview or further contact. The more CVs you send out the more interviews you will get but avoid a scattergun approach.

39 Maintaining your morale Job hunting is like a full time job Set yourself goals Develop new skills Follow your enthusiasms Consider doing some voluntary work Try a more creative approach

40 Telephone: Opening hours: Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm including vacations Drop-in times (no appointment needed): to & 2 to 5 pm

41 Speak to an Adviser: Quick query, drop in and speak to an Adviser 10.30am pm and 2pm-5pm Monday to Friday. E and an Adviser will respond to your query. You can also book a longer career guidance appointment over the phone or pop in.

42 Action Points Look for jobs through a variety of sources Don’t just apply to advertised positions Tell your network of contacts you are looking for a job If you are using LinkedIn don’t leave your profile half finished Do make sure applications are of a high quality Avoid a scattergun approach Stay positive and open to new options Make use of the Careers and Employability Service

43 Questions?

44 The University of Kent Careers and Employability Service You can download a copy of this presentation at


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