You are now a graduate. It is expected that you are now self-sufficient. You may find it fortuitous that the federal government has kept the National Youth Service Corps running. Not only will it expose you to new cultures, but it also gives you the opportunity to meet new and interesting people and grow your network.
For most graduates, going for NYSC takes away the awkwardness of sitting idly at home. You gain work experience and earn minimum wage for a year. But the question that gets many finicky is ‘What’s next after POP?’ No one wants to go back home twiddling their thumbs. It would be ideal to get a well-paying job as soon as possible. Then you can be your own man/woman and finally move out of your parents’ house.
If you want to land a job immediately or shortly after you complete your service to the fatherland, the following ideas will go a long way in enabling you achieve your aim:
1. Learn a skill:
It’s a sad reality in Nigeria that school doesn’t always prepare us for the labour market. Most people graduate only to realize that they don’t have any employable skills. And with the scarcity of jobs, you might find it extremely difficult to land a job in your field of study.
Therefore, the best way to go is to learn valuable skills that not only improve your employability but also make it possible for you to start your own business.
With the right skills, you could even find jobs that will allow you work from home and get paid handsomely.
Register for online or offline classes and start learning skills such as graphic design, web design, content writing, software development, data analysis, and so on.
Make use of Google and YouTube to research and learn.
2. Build the right relationships
It doesn’t serve to be a lone island. Everybody needs somebody. You need the right connections if you must go far in life. It is, therefore, imperative that you start growing your networks early. This way, you’ll be privy to timely information. You know about job openings and when and how to apply. So try as much as possible to make as many friends as you can. You could even create a LinkedIn account and connect with people. Follow professionals in your field of interest.
3. Prepare your CV/Resume
An eye-catching CV/Resume helps you stand out among the thousands of applications that recruiters have to shuffle through. You must adapt your CV to the job you’re vying for. Don’t use the same generic CV for all applications. Ensure you modify it accordingly. So ensure that you conduct proper research on how to write a winning CV.
4. Reach out to recruiters and submit unsolicited job applications
LinkedIn has made it possible to connect with people that can further your career. You can connect with recruiters and the human resource personnel of various companies. This gives you the opportunity to cold pitch them and stand a chance of getting recommended for a job.
If you have an attractive profile, recruiters may even reach out to you. Even if they don’t contact you after reading your profile, you are still in the win since you can message them yourself or find out about their company.
5. Search for suitable job openings
Job search is easier, thanks to the internet. You can go online and look for job openings. Register on platforms such as Jobberman and NgCareers to get notified of new postings. Don’t fail to visit the website of companies you’d like to work for and find out what’s new on their career page and whether or not they are currently recruiting.
LinkedIn is another great channel for landing an attractive job. Newspapers also post vacancies. So ensure that you read those pages every now and then.
6. Prepare For Interviews
Interviews can be intimidating. When you’re facing a panel, your palms get sweaty, and if care is not taken, you lose your confidence and display negative body language.
But practice makes perfect. The more interviews you go for, the more you get used to the setting and the closer you get to actually landing a job. So don’t be afraid to apply for as many jobs as you can and go for the interview when invited.
However, a good approach would be to know what’s expected of you before you enter an interview room for the first time. If you are prepared, you could even land the job of your dreams on the first attempt. You might want to read up on how to conduct yourself during an interview. And ensure that you learn everything there is to know about the company.
Apart from oral interviews, some organizations include written exams as part of their assessment process. So don’t fail to study GMAT questions and get comfortable with it.
The thought of job searching in a competitive market, submitting countless applications and suffering through tedious interviews can be stomach-churning. Most people try putting it off for a little while longer by going back to school for their graduate program. Many believe that getting a Master’s degree gives them an edge and increases their chances of bagging a well-paying job. However, that might not always be the case.
Even after spending additional time in school, you still have to face the job searching process and often times might not get lucky in landing your desired job, unless of course you have the right connections.
Therefore, you might as well start taking the necessary steps now to get you closer to your dream job. Even if you would like to go for your master’s program, you can do so after you’ve already been employed.