6 Struggles Every Recent Graduate Who’s Still Unemployed Is Facing Right Now
During your final year of uni, you always get asked the same question: what are your plans after graduation?
When we answer honestly, the vast majority of us don’t have a clue. The only plan we have is to get a job that’s somewhat linked to our degree.
During my own final year, I was in this exact position with that exact question coming from nearly every single member of my family. It wasn’t easy to answer when my main focus was completing assignments in time and attempting not to have a break down in the library. But it’s fine, I’d tell myself. It’s hard to answer now, but it will get easier, right?
Well… no. With a BA (Hons) Journalism degree to my name I still don’t really know what I want to do, and the struggles of finding out how to rectify this seem to be multiplying.
The only thing that makes me feel slightly better is that I’m not alone in this. So, jut in case you’re reading this and thinking you’re the only one whose post-graduation job hunt has gotten off to a false start, here are a few things you just might relate to.
1. Feeling like an absolute failure.
It’s often the case that, when you don’t get something straight away, you begin to feel like a failure. However, this shouldn’t be the case. We live in a post-financial crisis world which means there are some shortages of job opportunities. Getting the job you really want might just require you waiting a little for it to become available and work at some temporary jobs instead. And even if you keep failing, just keep applying. It’s alright to fall, as long as you keep getting back up.
2. And then letting rejection get you down.
Honestly, I had hoped that by the time I saw everyone at graduation, I would have a job to tell them all about. This was sadly not the case. Now I have applied for so many jobs that it has became hard to count. I have also gotten rejection from many places. I know that applying for jobs requires some rejection but it still means that each time it happens, your confidence is knocked down further and further. I’m sure this is a similar feeling for many grads, but we have to remember that not every email back will be a rejection email! There’s no point in giving up after you’ve worked your backside off for three long years during your degree, so tell yourself to brush off the rejection and start again. It’s the company’s loss, anyway.
3. Continuously having to change your CV.
We all know that you should change your cover letter and CV so that it’s personalised to the company you’re applying to. But we also know that doing this is, let’s face it, really dull, especially if you are applying for multiple jobs at once.
4. Filling out numerous applications online.
These days, nearly everything is done over the internet, so it should come as no surprise that applying for your dream job will be done that way too. But there is the downside that they don’t get to see your personality through just your CV, which can often make the struggle of finding and gaining a job that much harder. And even if you get through to the interview stage, they may request a telephone or Skype interview, which isn’t the greatest way to communicate with someone who could potentially hire you.
5. Needing experience to get a job, but needing a job to get some experience.
Ah, the most vicious of circles in which a recent graduate can get caught. Why do some graduate employers expect an impossible level of experience from graduates? How can we possible have X amount of years in a similar role when, for the last X years, we’ve been in education, supposedly learning the skills we need to apply for graduate jobs for which it seems we’re still not qualified enough.
6. And finally, understanding that the job hunt isn’t necessarily a competition.
It has taken me a while to realise this one. My main issue when looking for a job was seeing many of my friends be successful and get their first full-time jobs. What makes it harder is seeing that some of them have managed to get something that I could have easily applied for with my similar skill set and degree. I can imagine that I am not the only one who suffers from this jealously, and the one thing I have to remember and always hope others do too is that it is neither a race nor a competition. Everything eventually works different for everyone – you just have to be patient.