Do your research – there is a lot of information out there
Job clippings - review what’s out there
- Get to know what excites you. Research the kinds of roles that are out there and what aspects of careers appeal to you.
- Each week spend a small amount of time looking at job adverts. Don’t restrict yourself to any particular type of website, newspaper or magazine. Be open-minded and look in as broad a range of titles as possible.
- Skim through the job titles and descriptions without looking at the salaries, locations, skills required etc. Bear in mind that the purpose of this exercise is not to actually apply for these jobs.
- When an advert catches your attention, for whatever reason, simply cut out or print that advert. Don’t overthink this, just collect the jobs that you are naturally attracted to. Do not dwell on the salary, location, required skills or experience. You are simply figuring out the types of jobs and organisations that appeal to you.
- Place your ‘clippings’ in a folder and when you’ve gathered a large amount, at least 20, take them out and see if you can start to see any common themes. These might be the sector, the types of skills used, the environment, or culture of an organisation.
- Use these themes to help you to refine your career search around a particular skill, activity or sector.
- If you need help, ask a friend to look through and tell you what they see as the common themes. Or make a one-to-one appointment to discuss your ideas with the PFDC.
Job searching and career development websites
As you will be looking beyond academic employers to find jobs to apply for, there are an overwhelming number of starting places. A few useful ones are:
- PFDC list of Job Searching and Career development websites
- Advice from Imperial’s Careers Service on:
Employer fairs and events
You might not necessarily apply for any of the jobs advertised or work with any of the organisations represented. But by looking around at the huge range of opportunities, you may become aware of jobs or sectors that you had never previously thought about.
Attend an event organised by the Careers Service which is attended by a variety of different employers.