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They say getting your first full-time/permanent job is hard. I agree with this as it took me 6 months of job seeking to finally get my first FT job!

 

Some tips based on my experience...

 

Not getting interviews?

  • Get your Resume/CV checked by others. Get your friends or career centres to check it. 1-2 pages is the norm here if you're going for your first job.
  • Are you customising your cover letters for each position? If not it will look vague and show lack of effort.
  • Do you meet most of the selection criteria? Don't SPAM applications unless you are qualified for them!
  • Get more relevant experience and references. You may need to volunteer for the government, emergency services, etc. if you don't have any part-time/casual job references.

Not passing interviews?

  • Practice in front of the mirror! Record your responses and play them back! My first interviews I was nervous so of course the other more confident people competing with you will get the job. Practice, and be confident.
  • Research the company/field/average salary. They will usually ask questions on this to test your understanding and interest of the position and company.
  • ALWAYS ask questions at the end to show interest!

Does anyone else have any job seeking tips or experiences to share that may help others to find their first FT job? :)

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  • 3 weeks later...

According to my experience, you mustn't show any uncertainty during interviews.

 

For example I got to the third round of selection with a few major companies, and I was always asked about solving the most difficult problem their entire industry is facing now. Obviously that's not something you can just solve by a flash of genius.

 

In retrospect I realized that I should've just said "I'd gather data, learn from my seniors at the company, gain lots of experience and incorporate the ideas of others to solve the problem in the end".

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It seems interviews are like performances, give a good show bursting with confidence and saying things that hopefully the interviewer will like from you over the other candidates. ^_^

 

Vale have you ever done group exercises as part of the selection process? I did one when applying for the Ambulance service. We had to make a model bridge and do calculations based on some figures we were given. I chose to be the project manager and ehh... didn't turn out so well, didn't get past the next stage. <_<

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Yeah that's very true. Unless you've got some prior practice and can stand up and improvise well without losing your mask of confidence, you don't really stand a chance.

 

I've had "group interviews" like that a bunch of times. Personally, I like them a lot. Dunno if I'm a natural teamworker or just the Japanese are incompetent, but I always end up passing such tests with flying colors.

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  • 1 year later...

I'm currently looking for my first full time position and I'm a little nervous about it , the interview is what i would consider the easiest part as being a musician performance is one of my strong points , I am very good at convincing people to do what I want plus I'm extremely lucky for some unknown reason , the part I'm most worried about is what I should go into I have loads of experience in admin and in retail but I am hesitant to go straight into an administrative position full time.

 

Any words of advice/encouragement would be greatly appreciated

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  • 2 weeks later...
the part I'm most worried about is what I should go into I have loads of experience in admin and in retail but I am hesitant to go straight into an administrative position full time.

Do you intend to pursue a manager or team leader position in retail? As you have lots of experience this definitely sounds achievable, if you want to pursue this of course.

 

As for admin, well that's a bit broad. Can you narrow it down to something more specific? For example in our admin department we have several roles:

  • Receptionist
  • Call centre
  • Finance roles (Accounts Receivable/Payable)
  • Personal Assistant
  • Data Entry
  • Print Facility

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  • 2 months later...

You more or less covered a lot of what I've been told. I would like to mention though you should not hold back from a job if you don't quite meet ALL the criteria. As long as you cover most of it and what is most important you should be good.

 

Also, experience and connections are worth their weight in gold.

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Just an update on my current status , I have been offered an apprenticeship under a chef in England and a position in admin here , both with study opportunity , I'm thinking of going to do the apprenticeship because not only will I be gaining more skill as a cook (although not right away) but I will also be moving to central London and still be able to study teaching there.

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Guest Jupiter
Just an update on my current status , I have been offered an apprenticeship under a chef in England and a position in admin here , both with study opportunity , I'm thinking of going to do the apprenticeship because not only will I be gaining more skill as a cook (although not right away) but I will also be moving to central London and still be able to study teaching there.

 

Congratulations. I hope it works out for you and the very best of luck! :)

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Congratulations. I hope it works out for you and the very best of luck! :)

Thanks , I hope this works out , then I can learn some more about cooking :P , I haven't done much professional work in the food industry as yet but I'm really hoping to get out there .

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  • 9 months later...

After four years and moving on from my previous full-time role, it's time to do some job seeking again.

 

Reflecting back in my interviews, it seems it's just so important to be a good communicator vs. actual testing of your skills. At least that's the impression I had.

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I don't have much to contribute because most of what I know has already been said. I actually took a class at college related to this last september and I learned a lot of this stuff from it. I took it to become better at resumes and cover letters but I learned a lot about interviewing that I never knew. Like how body language plays a huge roll when you are giving your pitch.

 

One mistake I will say I have made for years is talking about wage. I have gotten jobs before in the past and have gotten under paid because I didn't know how or when to talk about wage. Know what you are worth and what the salary range is for the position before going to the interview. Stick to your guns and be confident. After that class I have been much more aggressive in interviews and it has worked for me.

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I am currently not job seeking again as of yet as I still don't feel fully ready or confident enough to go back out into the working world again ever since my diagnosis of depression and social anxiety...I have no idea just how much longer it will take, but it's best that this kind of thing is never rushed anyway :)

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  • Do you meet most of the selection criteria? Don't SPAM applications unless you are qualified for them!

 

I've actually been reading a bit into this and it's not exactly true. If you don't meet all the criteria you can still be considered by writing an especially good cover letter and perhaps even a phone call (find out that hiring manager's name!)

 

There's actually a thing where men will often apply for a job even if they only meet 60% of the selection criteria. Women, on the other hand, will often not apply unless they meet 100%. A bunch of sources suggest this may contribute to few women being in fewer senior positions than men. But I digress.

 

Most importantly though is that people often forget that people doing the hiring are, well, people! Sometimes just being nice and having a good attitude will be all your need; even if you don't meet the criteria for the job you applied for, they may still create a position for you if they like you enough.

 

Also little HR secret, at least 70% of jobs aren't advertised. Most come through networking, so go out and meet people who do the things you wanna do.

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