Phew. It feels like we might be coming out the other side of the COVID crisis, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t still feeling the effects.
The pandemic continues to send shockwaves through the world, and it’s clear the “other side” of the crisis is a world that is forever changed. COVID was the greatest period of economic and social disruption that most of us will ever experience, and there will be knock-on effects in the jobs market for a long time to come.
Sadly, when there’s a disruption in the labour market one cohort always pulls the short straw – recent graduates.
Jobs outlook for tech graduates
In today’s tech jobs market, things are a little up in the air for recent STEM graduates, even though they are fairing better than their fellow graduates in other disciplines who have seen their job offers rescinded or delayed.
On the one hand for recent graduates, the tech jobs market is growing and there’s a constant demand. On the other hand, there’s definitely a shift in employers attitudes and priorities.
Because the world is still moving so quickly and there is still so much economic and political uncertainty, there’s certainly a preference at the moment amongst employers for experienced hires wherever possible.
The graduate jobs market for STEM graduates is far from bleak, but it is certainly very competitive.
So what can you do to stand out as a STEM graduate in this highly competitive environment?
When, on paper, you may look like a carbon copy of other recent graduates who have qualified in the same field, it’s hard to stand out from the crowd. Read on to learn how to get noticed and get yourself a job in the tech industry in 2021.
1. Be noticed, but not for the wrong reasons
Get back to basics. Remember to pay attention to detail with your CV. Nothing is more off-putting to a potential employer than a CV that is riddled with errors and cliched as it may be, there really is no second chance at a first impression. Get trusted contacts to review your CV for inaccuracies, mistakes and irrelevances. It’s really difficult to proofread your own work as your brain automatically fills in the blanks of what you intended to say rather than what is actually on the page.
2. Personalise your cover letter and CV for every single role
When you’re applying for many roles it’s tempting to just spam as many employers as you can with your CV. But if you want to stand out, you need to show your potential employers what’s in it for them. We always recommend that candidates tailor their CV and showcased skills to job specifications – a job vacancy is a potential employer broadcasting that they have a problem, and you want to sell yourself as the solution. Make your employer realise that the gap they have in their team is you-shaped.
3. Build your online presence
Building your personal brand, ensuring your online persona and profile matches the one you are portraying to potential employers. Google yourself, improve your personal SEO, and ensure you’ve dealt with any online skeletons that might scupper your chances.
4. Build a network
Both online and offline networking events, groups, forums are fantastic ways to build contacts and connections. Professional connections can help you to learn, grow, and discover opportunities. There is a range of both online and face to face events taking place over the coming months from conferences to jobs fairs. Including STEM women graduate careers events, Bright Network’s annual careers FESTIVAL and the London Tech Job fair 2021 by Tech Meetups.
5. Research, research and research some more
If you’re applying for a role, prepare for your application and all stages of the recruitment process with copious amounts of research. You can’t know too much about a potential employer. Wow them with your knowledge, your pertinent questions and how you can relate your experience, skills and ethos to their culture and methodology.
6. Find a recruiter who will work with you
Recruitment consultancies are very well connected and knowledgeable of their specialist jobs market. They will be able to advise you on your CV, represent you and put your name in front of hiring managers. They will also support you through the recruitment process every step of the way, helping you to negotiate the best deal possible.
A good relationship with a great recruiter can last the length of your career, keeping you up-to-date with opportunities in the industry and being there ready to help you find the next step on your career path whenever you’re ready.
If you’re a recent technology graduate looking for opportunities, we know it’s a challenging market out there, but we’d love to help you realise your dreams and help you stand out. Contact our experienced team today to have a chat.