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How to find a job

Job search strategies to help you find employment

Identify advertised and unadvertised job opportunities via the Sydney CareerHub job database, online job boards, recruiters, networking and social media.

We can help you develop a job search plan to increase your chances of successfully locating suitable employment opportunities in both the unadvertised (hidden) and advertised job markets. Using multiple job search methods is generally more effective than using only one or two. 

8 keys to a successful job search

1. Make a job search plan 

Set goals (for example, you could aim to send out a certain number of job applications per week), put time aside to research employers, set targets to approach companies directly about work, and identify personal contacts to add to your job search network. 

Make sure you allow sufficient time for the job search and your other commitments (including study!) and keep records of all your applications and their progress.

2. Use a range of job search strategies

Target both advertised jobs and the hidden job market to ensure you maximise your opportunities for employment.

3. Network

Be proactive and incorporate networking into your job search to build and foster relationships with people in your target industry and related organisations. Don't forget, many jobs are found through word of mouth.

Develop strategic relationships by becoming a student member of your relevant professional association, joining and actively participating in relevant online forums or discussion lists, or volunteering for relevant organisations.

As a graduate, you can connect with other alumni via University of Sydney Alumni networks.

4. Know your elevator pitch

Be prepared to talk about your relevant skills, experience and professional interests to employers. Get started by using our Elevator Pitch Builder.

5. Research your target industry

This will allow you to make informed decisions about employers to approach regarding work. Sources of information include industry publications, professional associations, the University Library's resource guide for researching organisations and industries, organisations' websites and annual reports, as well as information from the press using databases such as Factiva.

Many people seek to align themselves with an organisation that is committed to values common to their own. Indexes that rate organisational performance against a range of measures include Kincentrics Best Employers in the Asia Pacific and the Employer of Choice for Gender Equality.

6. Have a social media presence

It’s never too early to develop a professional presence on social media. Set up a LinkedIn profile, connect online and follow potential employers of interest, and join relevant online forums and LinkedIn groups. 

7. Tailor each application

Prepare targeted professional applications for each role you apply for, with tailored resumes and cover letters. Demonstrate evidence of your relevant capabilities and the value you will bring to the employer. Use your industry and employer research to demonstrate your interest in the role and employer.

8. Stay confident and remain persistent

Engage in activities that will keep your energy levels high as well as maintain your focus on the job search. Be open to job opportunities that allow you further develop professional skills and experience.