Generations of Indian students consider the UK as the perfect study destination for the higher education acknowledging numerous benefits of studying in the country for instance quality education, world-ranking UK Universities, strong research infrastructure, globally-recognized courses & degrees and cultural diversity. Amongst other benefits UK’s diverse job sectors, numerous employment opportunities and internships is the greatest factor that makes studying in the UK top option. The competition is fierce in the graduate-job market and to stand out of crowd, participation in an internship or work experience through a job is vital to secure your dream jobs. However finding job & internship can be overwhelming if you are not fully prepared to make the most of the job opportunities in the UK.
While studying in the UK, most of the Indian students expect to be placed by the university’s campus placements as usually internships and jobs are allocated through ‘Campus Placement’ in India. But the UK job and internship industry operates to some extent differently. In the UK, you can apply for most jobs with relevant online application. Networking is extremely significant and you can find work placement through word of mouth. Rather than ‘campus placement’, there are career fairs & networking opportunities that are considered to be the first part of the process. The companies expect that students must be consciously aware of their core competencies. They should submit online application if they find that they match suitably with the examples connected to the core competencies emphasised by the company.
To make sure of taking the right step forward and boost your chances of finding job opportunities, the students on the job hunt should consider these practical tips:
1. Prepare a CV that caters to the requirement of British employers
In addition to highlighting your technical skills, include your soft skills also. For instance, you can mention a part-time job in McDonalds that helped to boost your confidence and enhanced your understanding about customer service.
2. Build LinkedIn profile and maintain social media account sensibly
Some companies may ask you to fill application forms using details on your LinkedIn profile to make the process quicker and easier. Pre-screening the applications, the companies may visit your social media profile. Make sure that you are level-headed & selective in what you like, subscribe or follow.
3. Start looking at entry requirements for various graduate internships
Problem-solving, analytical skill, organisational skill, business and global acumen, interpersonal relations and effective communication skill are some core competencies that you may find frequently on the career pages of various companies. You can strengthen your understanding of what is expected by the organisations through browsing their web pages where they clearly mention the core competencies they are looking for or even the guidelines on tips for student application process.
4. Go through the career web pages of the university
Websites of UK Universities provide good amount of information about career services and student support, career fairs and guest speakers’ visits. All this information can help you know about how committed the university is and help you prepare in advance what to expect.
5. Meet career counsellors at your UK University
Meeting career counselling team just after getting settled at the university will help you connect with the faculty, alumni and career professionals. They will help you in identifying your skills, mapping your talent and making career-related decisions. You can use employers’ directories and other relevant materials that are easily procured from their offices.
6. Ask for a mock interview
Most of the UK Universities provide generous support to the students to qualify to get internship or job. They may provide you the free counselling session or even mock interview session. Organising your thoughts into Situation, Task, Action and Result (STAR Method) can help you immensely while responding to behavioural-based questions.
7. Undertake online practice tests
Psychometric tests can help you understand your strengths and personality type as well as identify your areas of improvement. Counselling offices in many UK Universities have in-house psychometric tests.
8. Attend job fairs and work on your questions
However attending career fairs seems intimidating and daunting to the students still it provides the advantages in terms of network opportunities, gaining industry insight, interaction with potential employers and even improve the chance for a call back. Always prepare presumed questions prudently beforehand and converse with the employers confidently. Express your interest in the organisation and you may ask about the internship scheme and heighten your knowledge about the assessment process.
9. Ask for the feedback wherever possible
Some companies may provide you feedback if you made it to the assessment centre. You may even receive a personalised feedback depicting top of your strengths.
10. Read e-mails regularly
Most of the UK Universities hold career fairs and it is highly likely to get notification for the event-registration via email. Check emails regularly to not to miss such event.
Additionally, talking to the professors and networking with the fellow students or contacting an alumnus from your university can help you gain information about internship or job opportunity. Use every day in the UK to build your employability skills right from the beginning and always remember to ‘Be Yourself’.
Disclaimer: The views and opinion expressed in this article are solely of the renowned blogger Amarjeet Singh Mutneja. We are making the content available in our effort to provide valuable information about study in the UK and how you can make the most of your time being there. Amarjeet Singh Mutneja is working as Student Recruitment Officer, University of Warwick, UK.