6 employability tips for landing your dream job

Date 4 October 2023

Don’t let yourself be haunted by the uncertainty of an undefined career path. Developing a career plan can help you unmask your potential and put steps in place to achieve your ambitions.

David Conway

1. Crafting a Career Costume: Define Your Dream Job

Much like choosing a Halloween costume, your career path should be carefully selected. Start by identifying your passions, skills, and interests. Think of this as your career costume. Take the time to research and understand the job market, so you can tailor your career goals accordingly. Remember, it’s okay to be adventurous and experiment with different career costumes until you find the perfect fit as a graduate.

2. Mastering the Art of Networking: Making Connections

Networking is key for your career and provide career planning inspiration. Attend industry events, join professional organisations, and connect with other alumni or mentors. Networking is about building relationships and seeking guidance from those who have treaded the career path before you. Much like collecting sweets while trick-or-treating, gathering valuable insights and contacts can be just as rewarding and help define plans.

3. Polishing Your CV: Casting the Right Spell

Your CV is your career starter. It’s essential to craft a CV that highlights your skills, experiences, and achievements. Tailor your CV for each job application, emphasising how your skills match the specific job requirements. Don’t forget to include volunteering, any part-time work, and any extracurricular achievement you may have achieved, such as the Changemaker Certificate which are relevant to your desired career. A well-crafted CV can be the starting point that opens the door to your dream job.

4. Conquering the Interview Monster: Confidence is Key

Facing a job interview can feel like confronting a monster under your bed. But with preparation and confidence, you can tame the interview beast. Practice your answers to common interview questions, research the company thoroughly, and be ready to discuss how your skills align with their needs. Dress professionally, exude confidence, and remember to ask questions of your own. Interviews are an opportunity for both sides to see if it’s a good fit.

5. Embrace the Power of Continuous Learning: Beware Complacency

Its all about change and transformation, and so should your career be. Stay up-to-date with industry trends, acquire new skills, and consider further education or certifications. Don’t become complacent; instead, embrace the spirit of lifelong learning to remain relevant and competitive in your field. For example, are there any LinkedIn Learning Courses which relate to your career goal? Could completing a short course such as ‘Learning to code’ increase options open to you?

6. Seek Out Scarily Good Professional Information, Advice and Guidance

Don’t be afraid to seek support from your careers and employability service. Student Futures offers employability support for life to all UON graduates. As alumni you are welcome to make an appointment with a Career Development Consultant. The appointment can be in person, by Teams or over the phone. Contact studentfutures@northampton.ac.uk if you would like our support.

Don’t be frightened of having a career plan. With the right strategies in place and persistence, its possible to navigate around any obstacles to land your dream job. We have loads of support on offer here at Northampton with our dedicated careers and employability team who sit within Student Futures.

David Conway, Head of Careers and Employability at the University of Northampton
David Conway

Head of Careers and Employability at the University of Northampton, David Conway gives 6 top tips on how you can develop career planning strategies to help you land your dream job.