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Career ABC

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Search for jobs effectively

Confucius said: "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." This truth also applies to job search. It is therefore important to know how to begin the journey to the world of career and how to be well prepared for this journey.

The process of job hunting can be divided into six stages:

1. Making decision about job hunting

With this decision you start investing in job hunting. What does it mean? Since then you start making efforts to find employment. It is therefore important to ensure you have all the important means to do this, including time, the Internet connection, phone etc. It is also advisable to prepare a list of people who may provide you with useful information. According to experts, the most fruitful approach is to treat looking for employment as a job, that is to invest 40 hours a week in it.

2. Self-analysis

Before starting the journey to the world of career, it is good to precisely define your destination, that is what kind of job would be best for you. Clearly identifying your strengths and your dream job will make your search through a maze of job adds much easier.

Concrete examples of what you have achieved can make your cover letter and your answers at the interview more convincing to a prospective employer.

The following areas are worth closer attention:

  • values (what you find important in life and work)
  • interests
  • skills and talents
  • job preferences (types of tasks, work environment, co-workers, pace of work, challenges, safety, changeability, on-call availability)

3. A survey of the job market

When you already know where you are heading, you should take a closer look at the opportunities available, that is analyze the job market.

The sources of information about job vacancies are usually divided into two major groups: standard (most popular) and non-standard ones. It is worth noting, that standard methods are most frequently used by job seekers, whereas non-standard methods may prove more effective.

Standard methods:

a. Institutions:

  • University and college based careers service centres (their list, sorted by region, is available here) Tutaj )
  • Labour offices
  • Employment agencies

b. The Internet, including:

c. Newspapers:

  • Gazeta Wyborcza (Monday Supplement)
  • Dziennik (Monday Supplement)
  • Dziennik Polski (Tuesday Supplement)

Non-standard methods

The effectiveness of untypical methods of job search cannot be overestimated. They all give job seekers an opportunity to get in closer touch with an employer and gain access to more detailed information. These methods include:

a. Participation in events

  • Job/career fairs,
  • Open days,
  • resentation and courses carried out by companies at universities and colleges.

b. Contacts

  • It is advisable to inform all friends and relatives about your job search. This can be an excellent way to get information about vacancies and the hidden job market, which is estimated to cover 60% of the whole job market.

c. Visiting prospective employers.

d. Participation in message boards and blogs.

Competences valued by employers

During the recruitment process, many prospective employers pay much attention to the so-called "soft skills," that is social skills. It is therefore useful to practise them at special courses or workshops, like the ones run by the JU Careers Service.

The Polish Human Resources Management Association and Accenture management company have carried out a research on the graduates' competences valued by prospective employers. It turned out that the following factors are most often taken into account:

  • command of foreign languages
  • communication skills
  • teamwork skills
  • specialist knowledge
  • development plans

4. Preparation of application documents

The information about CV and Cover Letter is available in the relevant sections of our "Survival Kit"

5. Preparation for an interview

The information about the interview is available in the Interview section.

6. Starting work

Before starting work it is advisable to ask the employer to provide us with a detailed employment offer. Such a document should include: post  job description, range of duties and salary/wages. The Polish labour law obliges the employer to sign an employment contract within seven days from the employment start date.