These days, employers are looking for much more from potential employees than what’s on your resume, and while formal qualifications are still valuable, they are not the be all and end all. Here’s some of things employers will be looking for in addition to your overall educational qualifications.
Employers are increasingly looking for well rounded graduates who have broad experience in life, not just academia. They are specifically looking for graduates with a diverse range of extra curricular activities – such as hobbies, volunteering, travel or other activities that clearly illustrate
The ability to work effectively as a team is a vital skill required for operating effectively in any organisation, as we learnt in last week’s blog post. Employers will look for clear examples of working in a team and your ability and familiarity with collaborating on projects.
Whatever level of responsibility involved in the job for which you are applying, employers want to know about your ability to lead – to lead people, projects and the development of new ideas. Make sure your resume has clear examples of projects you have lead – whether it’s captaining your sporting team, group leader in a class project, or leading a professional group of co workers. If you don’t have a lot of leadership experience, get some! Volunteer to lead class projects, join your local sporting association board, or offer to run an event for your local Students Association
While marks aren’t the be all and end all, they are important and most employers will look at them. Many employers will not look at graduates that don’t have a credit average. If you’re marks aren’t where you feel they should be, get extra support from lecturers or tutors and try and develop a well rounded field of experience in other areas.
Do your homework
When you apply for jobs employers will want to see that you have done some research, that you are familiar with the organisation for whom you are applying and that you know why you want to work there. Do your homework and find out as much as you can. Ask around , and if possible gather information form anyone you may know who works there.
We’ve talked before aboutthe importance of creativity in all that you do. Make sure you are bring to potential employers and highlight examples in your resume incidences of where you’ve been able to innovate, either as part of your learning or professional career.
Position, position, position
Remember that you are ultimately going to be up against other candidates that may or may not have more impressive resumes, and/or more experience than you so make sure you highlight to your potential employers what it is that is different about you from other candidates – be it personality or abilities or interest
More and more employers are assessing potential candidates on the basis of their fit with an organisation, and this can be a key reason why some candidates get selected over other perhaps more qualified or experienced candidates. Try and illustrate to your potential employer why your values are aligned and why you feel you would fit in well with their organisational culture.
Keep it clean
This is a no brainer, and it kind of goes without saying, but heck, we’re going to say it anyway. Clean up your social media profiles if you haven’t already. Remove those drunken images from that party years ago or other inappropriate imagery. Make sure your Linked In profile is up to date also.