Thursday, 4 June 2009

Job Hunting

I've been job hunting for about eight weeks now. My plan at first was to get a local temp job to raise a bit of cash, then find a 'proper' grad job later. Well, it seems to be getting closer to being later rather than sooner. I had the advantage of finishing my university work early, and time is running out before graduates flood the market.

So... I've been up the town centre. The only advertised vacancies are for places like Weatherspoons, Sports World and ... Linen World... Sigh. I couldn't bring myself to hand my CV over to any of them. The thought of working in retail again, especially after working so hard for three years for a degree, made me feel more than depressed.

I've looked in the local paper. The only job that didn't require previous experience, ownership of a car, child-care experience, or to do with mechanics or factories... well, there weren't any.

I've been looking online almost every day for a job. There are so many sites, with so many jobs, that it is actually pretty hard to sort through it all and find something suitable. Made even harder by the fact that I don't really know what I'm looking for.

But alas, a few days ago I stumbled across a job that I think actually sounds good, and that I think I might be qualified for. So the past two days I've been re-writing my CV and trying to compose my first covering letter. Thank goodness for my lovely publishing tutor, Rachel Hore, who offered me great feedback on my CV and also agreed to be my second reference.

A few things I learned about
Writing a CV:

+ Start with a few short lines about where you are now and where you are aiming to be.

+ Keep it crisp and to the point.

+ Decide whether your education or work experience is more relevant to the position you are applying for, and put that first.

+ Make the layout clear and easy to read. Use bullet points, line spacing, bold/caps for headings (but not italics).

+ In MS Word, using tables can really help with structuring a layout (with aligning separate pieces of text on the same line to different areas of the page, for example). Simply right-click and find the table options, and select 'none' under the boarder settings so you don't have ugly lines all over the place.

+ Tailor your CV to each job you apply for.

+ Spell check and proofread.

I'll be sending my application off later today. Fingers crossed!

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