New Year, new job - careers advice from Bucks New Uni man

Bucks Free Press: Daniel Walker Daniel Walker

ONE of the more common New Year's resolutions is to finally make that break from your current workplace and seek out fresh challenges in the form of a new job.

Here, Daniel Walker of the Careers & Employability team at Bucks New University offers some tips to give yourself an advantage in a crowded and competitive market.

There are two huge themes which all 21st century employers are facing: One - Computers are an essential component of day to day business, and two - there are often hundreds of applicants for each job vacancy.

This means a successful job hunter will know how to stand-out and a very good way to do this is electronically. Use LinkedIn.

You don’t need to be a computer expert to do this. LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com) is an extremely popular business networking site; which can connect you directly with potential employers and give them access to your page which is essentially an electronic CV.

To really make the most of this site, it is important to take advantage of the opportunities there are to include extra features on your page such as links to projects you may have been involved with.

Improve your IT skills. We could all do with improving our IT skills. Fortunately, there are plenty of online courses that can be studied. www.alison.com is one highly commended site which provides free accredited courses.

Redesign your CV. It was recently suggested that employers look at the majority of CVs on their computer monitor rather than on paper, yet the majority of CVs they see won’t take advantage of this opportunity. If you can develop your IT skills, this will allow you to give a bit of life to what can otherwise be a pretty boring document.

You can, like LinkedIn, add some (tasteful) flashes of colour and include links to web pages featuring information on your past achievements or to slideshows featuring a portfolio of your work.

This should increase the chance that employers will enjoy interacting with your CV and make you stand-out from the interminable black and white documents with the same old clichés typed in the same old fonts.

Mind The Career Gap eBook by Daniel Walker and David Palmer-Mitchell is available at www.mindthecareergap.com and from Amazon.

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