One of the greatest hindrances that a newly graduated student faces is that of searching for a job. The transition between being a student to a full-time working employee can be a tedious road filled with uncertainty, numerous unfruitful interviews and a fair share of ups and downs. In the competitive world today, simply having a qualified degree is not enough to get that dream job. While the degree attests to technical knowledge of an individual, recruiters are always on the search for more ‘job-ready’ individuals. The term ‘job-ready’ or ‘work-ready’ is, however, an ambiguous term to most recent graduates.
Here are a few tips to ensure that you stand out in the crowd and can portray yourselves as work-ready.
Stay updated with your industry
Perhaps the most important aspect of being work-ready is to stay updated with your preferred industry. With the advent of technology, rapid changes are occurring in almost every industry. There are significant new trends and opportunities that are created and staying updated with them is a great way to stay relevant in the job market. Keeping yourself up to date with industry news can also help you identify niche job roles and companies that you can apply to for job prospects.
Focus on developing your soft skills
One of the most sought after skills for any position regardless of the industry or job role is soft skills like communication, leadership, problem-solving, interpersonal skills, etc. Soft skills are the necessary distinction between an adequate candidate and an ideal candidate as it showcases your personality and is an indication of how you would fit in as a person in the organisation. Recruiters actively look for employees who fit into the general environment of the company and can work well with different personalities on a team. You can develop such skills through personality development courses or participating in extracurricular activities like debates, MUNs, research projects, etc.
Expand your work experience through internships
Work experience goes a long way to show a potential recruiter of both your technical and practical capabilities on paper. A student with previous work experience is far more likely to adapt to a full-time job well, than a student without any experience. Due to this, recruiters prefer hiring students who have done internships in the past. Certain skills can only be acquired on-the-job and not through formal education. Therefore, it is a great idea to work as an intern before entering any industry. For students, internships are a way to explore new industries and identify what their job preferences are. Internships, therefore, act as a training wheel for students to be job-ready.
Expand your skillset through part-time courses
With the constant changes that keep arising in every industry, they are new skills that the organisations demand. For example, 10 years ago, digital marketing did not hold as much value as it does now. A student who is not well-versed with this form of marketing will be valued less over a candidate who is so. Therefore, it is important to keep learning and updating your skill sets with new courses relevant to your industry to stand out from the crowd. Formal curriculums in schools and colleges take a long time to evolve their subjects to present the needs of the industry and therefore, students need to seek such skills through part-time courses in specialised institutions.
Network your way to your ideal job
Lastly, the best way to be job-ready is by polishing your networking skills. Networking can help a student gather insights about their preferred industry and job roles, thereby allowing them to make more informed decisions about where to apply. Additionally, networking also creates a unique opportunity for job-seeking as it makes a pathway for job applications through referrals. Recommendations/referrals from someone inside an organisation are a great way to establish your capabilities and therefore, portray your work-readiness to potential recruiters.
It must be kept in mind that the level of competition is increasing day by day. Thus, you must stay abreast with the current trends and skills, work behind honing them and gain as much experience as you can. This will just help in preparing you for a full-time job and also increase your chances of securing a job in a well-reputed firm.