Some recent stat's on graduates unemployed..

A few months back I was on here asking for advice with a few job interviews that I had lined up. I remember being very disappointed at being so close to jobs but not quite making the cut. Since then I have made sure there are no unemployment gaps on my CV by making some money at Tesco. This job has been a good thing for me… Knowing that this kind of job is not fun in any way and I could never do this for a career has just made me even more determined to work on my design portfolio. Having applied for around 20 jobs a few months back and landing 2 interviews and 3 other responses in rejection I feel slightly better with this news article I recently found.

It is quite scary seeing that on average around 69 people get rejected from the same job position in the UK, and before people used to say a degree was a level of education, the grade didn’t matter so much. Well not anymore a 2:1 at the least seems to be a way of today.

One other question I have for a 3 month placement I have seen advertised recently. It is not specifically for an ID graduate but it is design experience and any type of experience at the minute should be good right?

Most certainly. At this point getting experience is key - whether it’s an internship, freelance or medium term contract…

If it’s any design experience, then definitely take it. I have been talking to a few designers in US and Canada, and they said that for entry level position, they are mainly concerned about your soft skills, your ideation ability and clarity of communication. If they can take you on, they can teach you the hard stuff such as design business and manufacturing technology in their own way.

So in conclusion, take the job, even if it’s fashion design.

Definitely get as much design experience as you can, doesn’t matter what the work is as long as it is loosely creative! you don’t want to get an interview at your dream job then get beat by a candidate who’s just had more generic work experience.

I think at this period in time companies are still hiring interns but are reluctant to take on new design graduates full time as they are too much of a risk if they don’t have the experience. They can stick an intern on as temporary staff so they can hire you indirectly through an agency and chop you if you’re not working out. If you do well then they’ve already invested money in you to train you up so you might just land a full-time job.

I’m not a graduate but luckily I’ve landed a 12 month placement at a large corporation but only after I had 8 interviews, at places such Nokia, Vax and Boots. After getting rejection after rejection I felt a bit demoralised, as if I wasn’t good enough to work at such places.

But what kept me going was the fact that I had a portfolio that was getting me top class interviews where others were struggling, at Nokia only 7 out of 65 applicants were interviewed, so I took the positives out of this and just tried to improve my appearance and interview technique, I got more organised, bought a new portfolio case and had a shave, this seemed to have worked!

It’s definitely a struggle but even interviews are good experience for more interviews - I swear I am an absolute pro at talking about my work now!