Having a resume isn’t always enough to get you ahead in the job hunt.
Here are seven things you can do to sell yourself to employers and stand out from the crowd.
1. Make a personal website
Design a website that shows off your skills, enthusiasm, and knowledge of your field of interest.
Building a personal website is a chance to be creative and bring all your experience and previous work together. Include things like:
- A biography (or even a blog)
- A downloadable resume
- Your skills set
- Current projects
- Contact details
- Links to your social media (if necessary)
Here’s an awesome personal website by an international student to get you inspired.
Don’t know how to make a website? It’s easier than you think. Check out the ten best website builders for beginners.
2. Engage with employers
Many jobs are never actually advertised.
Use these strategies to engage with employers and let them know that you’re interested in working with them.
- Cold calling/emailing: Contacting employers to ask about possible vacancies is a proven technique. Follow this great guide to cold calling from Youth Central.
- Use social media to your advantage: Like and follow relevant people and groups to be updated on job vacancies and news.
- Attend job-shops and careers expos: Familiarise yourself with the market and introduce yourself to the people working the stalls.
- Join the professional organisation associated with your industry: They’ll give you networking opportunities and tell you about job vacancies.
- Do internships and volunteer: Find out more about how to get volunteer experience here.
3. Make a personal portfolio
A portfolio isn’t just for artists. Whether you study marketing, business or communications, you should put together a collection of your best work and recommendations. You can take it with you when you go to job interviews and show employers all the things you’ve done.
- Positive feedback from teachers/bosses
- A reflection on your professional development
- Evidence of specific skills (certificates/licenses)
4. Start a blog
Use a blog to demonstrate in-depth knowledge of your field of interest. A blog is a chance to take all those ideas you can’t fit on a resume and write them down. It also shows that you’re up to date with industry trends and are passionate and thoughtful
Check out former international student Wai Hong Fong’s amazing blog here.
5. Take advantage of social media
- Decide what social media accounts you want to use to sell yourself to employers and then fix the privacy settings for the ones you don’t want employers to see. Keep them strictly professional and update them with your latest experience/education.
- LinkedIn is a must (our guide here), but any account, used strategically can help in your hunt.
- Be a ‘giver.’ Don’t just talk about yourself but share useful content, ask questions and give advice to others.
- Network with relevant people. Like and follow groups so that you can get notifications of job/internship or volunteering opportunities.
- Follow industry leaders so that employers can see that you know who’s who.
6. Make a YouTube video
Show off your personality by making a YouTube video. The possibilities here are endless. You could:
- Introduce yourself to employers.
- Talk about you career goals.
- Give opinion and analysis on industry developments.
- Make ‘how-to’ videos for other students or professionals.
Do whatever you think will work best. Being able to see and hear someone makes a big difference to employees, and this is a great option for those who don’t like writing or might be a little nervous about meeting employers for the first time. When you get an interview, you’ll already know that they’ve seen you and like you.
7. Start your own society or club
Network and demonstrate your organisational skills all in one go by setting up a club or society. Think of a particular area in your field that your classmates and friends might be interested in and get people together to explore them. Set goals for yourselves, help each other out and have regular meetings. Being a group organiser is something you can put on a resume that will tell employers that you’re highly motivated.