5 tips to boost your job prospects
1Sharpen your qualifications. If you have a general qualification with average results, it can be difficult to stand out. Try honing your qualifications to the needs of the labour market. Brian Mooney, former president of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors, suggests visiting websites such as qualifax.ieto see what kinds of courses are out there, and how to match them with vacancies.
2Make sure your CV or interview will impress. Employers receive mountains of CVs – yet many are generic, error-strewn and poorly formatted. Make sure what you’ve written is concise, professional and tailor-made to the needs of the employer.
“Above all, employers are interested in enthusiasm and energy, which must be evident in the CV and cover letter as well as when you come along to the interview,” says Seán Gannon of Trinity College Dublin’s careers service.
3Think you know what jobs are out there? Think again. The labour market changes rapidly and you need to find out where the opportunities are, and where they’re likely to be. Brian Mooney recommends visiting websites such as careersportal.ie.
4Network, network, network. You need to exploit every opportunity. If you’re in college, for example, that could be professors, alumni groups or industry contacts to set up potential interviews or gain work experience. Industry groups can also be a good way of finding opportunities in whatever area you’re interested in.
“The most important thing is to be active, and not wait passively for the perfect job to be advertised,” says Gannon.
He recommends checking out internship programmes such as the European Orientation Programme, G4IG, Intertrade, Fusion and Accumen.
5Standing still means going backwards.
The golden rule is to get out of bed today and do something to improve your chances of getting a job. “Do voluntary work, seek an internship under schemes such as JobBridge or consider opportunities abroad,” says Mooney. “The world reinvents itself every day. So must you.”