Career Guide: Three Things Fresh Graduates Must Check Before Looking for a Job
Finding a job after leaving university can be a challenge. Job offers often require a few years of experience, which you might not be able to obtain during your studies. So, what is the key to get the right job immediately after graduating? Title photo: Stock pictures / Jobspin.
Look at the Job Market – (Have You Looked Somewhere Else?)
Sometimes the problem doesn’t come from you, but from the job market. In several countries, the job market is saturated, thus making it difficult to find stable employment.
Following the 2008 economic crisis, unemployment rose everywhere. It is only now that the numbers are returning to its pre-2008 figures. However, the rate of growth and employment changes from place to place – especially when taking youth employment into account.
Today, Czech Republic is the European country with the lowest rate of unemployed people, being only 2.1% of the population (Source: Brno Daily, June 2019). But what about youth employment, specifically?
Back in 2009, the European Union established the strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training (“ET 2020”): an ongoing forum in which Member States share critical information and agree on common strategies and benchmarks to improve the education, training and wellbeing of European youth.
In 2012, ET 2020 added a new benchmark: “the share of employed graduates aged 20-34 with at least upper secondary education attainment and having left education 1-3 years ago should be at least 82% [by 2020].”
EU data from 2018 shows that so far, only 17 Member States were able to achieve such a result: Malta (94.8%), Germany (92.1%), Netherland (92.0%), and Czech Republic (89.6%) are the more virtuous; while Italy (56.5%), Greece (55.3%) and North Macedonia (49.2%) are the furthest from it.
Looking for a job in a country where unemployment is very low will make your chances higher, in terms of starting a new career. Furthermore, a growing number of job positions require the use of English language over the local languages, and many companies offer complete “relocation packages” for international job-seekers that include aid with legal documents, help with findinding accommodation, or local language courses.
Networking (Universities’ Job Days and Job Fairs)
Getting outside and handing your CV in person requires motivation and self-confidence. “It is not easy to know your value at your career beginning, but communicating and meeting new people is an excellent starting point,” says Kateřina Kukrechtová of Jobspin, organizer of Jobspin Multilingual Job Fairs.
Meeting your possible future employer in person can make you feel stressed, but it’s an optimal way to create contacts in your professional field. It will also help you discover how the environment and people in the company you want to work for are like. Often, universities organize career/job days where students can get in touch with companies working in specific fields, often related to the field of the faculty organizing the event. Don’t hesitate to contact your university’s secretary to find out if one is organized at your uni!
Other events where you can directly meet professionals are public job fairs. If you want to work in the Czech Republic, Jobspin Multilingual Job Fairs can help you establish contact with international recruiters. Four multilingual job fairs are organized a year (two in Prague and two in Brno), offering workshops, presentations, Czech-mock lessons, talks with interesting personalities and more. The next ones will take place in Brno on October 19 and in Prague on November 23.
Some Job Positions Suitable for Fresh Graduates Available in Czech Republic
If you are now wondering what job opportunities the country with such low unemployment has to offer, here we list job offers for non-Czech speakers available in Czech Republic. You can also browse for internships or part-time jobs in Prague, Brno, and other Czech cities.
If you want to discover more job offers, you can visit Jobspin’s website and switch on job alerts after registering, so you don’t miss new job offers!
Why not start with an internship before looking for a long-term contract? It could be easier for you, and you could be hired by your company at the end of your internship.
Work on Your CV
Your CV is the first impression that your possible employer would get of you. If you wouldn’t wear a Hawaiian shirt or mismatching socks when meeting your future boss, then you probably do not want to send an imperfect CV – which would worsen their judgement on you.
All the following suggestions may sound trivial and obvious, but people often forget about small details, and those details may easily add up.
- Proofread your CV. Twice or more, ask someone to read it with you. Typos, grammar mistakes, misused punctuation, the list of mistakes to avoid goes on. Those mistakes are the first thing that will be noticed, and what you see as simple and innocent oversights will often be perceived as negative signs of carelessness and negligence.
- Adapt your CV. Different employers might want different specifics for different job positions. You shouldn’t send the same CV to everyone, but adapt it to the different requests and relevance of your past experience. Pick what you believe to be relevant.
- Research the company you are applying for. Be informed about the services the employer offers, what you will likely be required to do, and what proves that you can do it.
- Double check your cover letter and the emails you are sending to your hiring manager. Trust us, you don’t want to address the wrong company when asking for a job, or forward your CV to different companies in CC.
The tips for graduates who would like to find a job in Prague or Brno were prepared by the Jobspin team: a mix of interns, graduates, and university drop outs. Like what you’re reading? Subscribe to monthly news highlights in the Czech job market and economy – Newsletter Sign Up. Stay tuned – more reading is coming next week.
Prepared by Zenon Moreau and Manuele Siciliano.