Top 5 Soft Skills Needed to Help You Land Your Graduate Role

by Feb 8, 2019

It’s that time of year again when many employers are opening their graduate programs for 2020!  With some companies reporting to receive anything between 10,000 to 20,000 applications for under a 1000 graduate roles, having excellent academic results simply isn’t enough! The Australian Association of Graduate Employers recently published a survey conducted by McCrindle, consisting of 115 employer members. Research findings from this survey showed that the top 2 skills that employers look for in graduates in the application and selection process are:

  • Communication skills (100%)
  • Teamwork (97%)

The top skills that graduate lack are:

  • Understanding of our organisations (40%)
  • Commercial awareness (35%)
  • Resilience (17%)

So how you can stay ahead of the competition and really demonstrate to employers that you have the skills they need? Here are 5 tips to help you in your graduate recruitment search and help you to land your dream job

1. Communication skills

Simple things such as not proof reading your resume, cover letter and application form prior to submitting your application can be a deal breaker for many employers. For example, stating that you have excellent attention to detail on your CV but spelling your address incorrectly could the mean the difference between you securing an interview or your application being rejected altogether! Similarly, communication isn’t just about what you say. Active listening skills can also show that you are a strong communicator and have understood the requirements of your employer, interviewer or client.

2. Teamwork

Being able to demonstrate that you are a team player regardless of organisation type and size is extremely important. No matter where you work in the future you will need interact with teams to ensure projects are delivered so make sure that if you are attending an interview and/or assessment centre you work well with others, contributing ideas effectively but also ensuring that you don’t dominate the group and allow others to express their ideas.

3. Research the organisation

When it comes to applying and interviewing any job, research is the key! Employers want to know that you truly understand their business, goals and objectives to highlight that you are truly interested in working for them are good cultural fit for their organisation. When researching an organisation, go beyond the website. Check out the company’s LinkedIn or other social media pages, read newspaper and online articles to find out about any recent wins or plans for the future. You can even attend events organised by your university, such as career fairs and networking events, which gives you the chance to speak directly with different organisations to learn more about the daily operations and what a typical day for a graduate in that company looks like. Being able to relay this information back to the employer in your application and interview shows that you are genuinely passionate about the organisation and its goals.

4. Commercial awareness

Knowing what is going on in your industry is extremely important, and again can help you to stand out from your competition. It also shows that you can bring value to the employer. When interviewing for graduate roles make sure you can highlight any current or projected future trends in your field to show by attending events, reading articles and  researching professional bodies in your field.

5. Resilience

The ability to demonstrate that you are able to recover from difficult situations quickly is extremely important and shows employers that you don’t give up easily. According to the 2019 AAGE Employer Survey findings, only 17% of students who applied for their 2019 programs where able to show that they were able to deal with difficult situations.

So when applying for your 2020 graduate roles, follow these 5 top tips to help you with your search!

Featured image courtesy of Unsplash

By Domonique Delgado

By Domonique Delgado

Business Development Officer

Domonique Delgado is a Business Development Officer at UTS Careers, where she is responsible for helping to increase the number of available internship and employment opportunities to UTS Students. Domonique has extensive recruitment, student, and graduate coaching experience, and is passionate about building relationships with employers to help UTS students and graduates connect with industry.

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