Job Search Strategies

Learning Outcome

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the range of professional and enterprise opportunities related to the field of study
  • Investigate the skills and attributes required for employment.

Background

There are many ways to look for a job. In a competitive labour market, it is essential that students use a multi-faceted approach which includes both applying for advertised positions and using networks to tap in to the ‘hidden’ job market. It also means that job seekers need to be persistent, strategic and resourceful when finding the right vacancies to apply for.

Before an individual starts their job search, they need to ensure they have:

  • An up to date resume (or CV) that highlights their skills, achievements, education and work experience
  • The skills and personal qualities necessary for the jobs they would like to apply for
  • Decided the hours and days they can work (e.g. to fit around study, visa requirements)
  • Obtained or applied for a tax file number (TFN)

Activities and discussion

Students can undertake a number of activities that encourage them to reflect on their current job search strategy and refine it further to locate more opportunities. It is recommended that students watch the Captivate video on Job Search as a broad overview on this topic. Suggested activities include:

Reflecting on current and/or past job search methods – ask students to reflect on how they or their friends and family have found work in the past.

Discussion:

Keep a tally of the different methods identified (e.g. responding to an online job vacancy, word of mouth, handing in a resume in person).

  • What methods have the students found most and least successful?
  • Why the strategies are working or not working?

Brainstorming ideas for future job search strategies – ask students to imagine that they have their own business and need to recruit some staff to work for them.

Discussion:

  • How would they find the right people to work for them? Why?
  • How would they judge that they are a good fit for their business?
  • If someone was to approach them directly for work, what would impress them?

Network Map Activity – given that a significant proportion of positions are not formally advertised, students with a strategic network of people who can help them locate work have an advantage. Ask students to spend some time writing down the names of all the people they know who might be able to help them find work:

  • Friends
  • Family
  • Peers
  • Teachers and other RMIT staff
  • Current and past co-workers and managers
  • Acquaintances (e.g. doctor, hairdresser, fitness instructor, barista)

Discussion:

  • Does your network know you are looking for work?
  • Are there people in your network who you would feel comfortable asking for introductions to other people?
  • If you could add anyone else to your network that you haven’t met yet, who would it be?
  • How might you get in contact with them to make a positive first impression?

Students view RMIT graduate job search video. Students will hear RMIT graduates talking about how they have found work successfully while studying.

Discussion:

  • What job search methods did the graduates use?

Further Resources

Mode

Face-to-face, mode or flipped classroom

Time

Up to 1 hour

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