The Department of Employment recently surveyed more than 3000 Australian employers to find out what advice they would give to young people looking for a job.
Employers said they look for:
- a positive attitude
- motivation and enthusiasm
- someone who is prepared to learn and take direction.
They also said that applicants need to:
- be punctual and dependable
- be respectful to colleagues and customers
- show a commitment to staying in the job for an acceptable period of time.
Employers said that a job seeker's personal presentation is very important. They expected job seekers to:
- wear appropriate clothing
- keep their hair tidy
- limit or cover up tattoos, piercings and jewellery.
Employers also mentioned that some young people have unrealistic expectations of work, including:
- being unprepared for the demands of the workplace
- the level of pay they would receive
- wanting to start at the top instead of working their way up.
Employers said that getting work experience or volunteering was a good way to prepare for work as it:
- helps you to learn about the workplace
- enables you to get practical skills
- demonstrates a commitment to work.
Many employers also mentioned the importance of good job search skills. You should:
- tailor your application to the specific job
- proof read your application and résumé so they are error-free
- contact employers directly and personally follow-up on your application
- research the employer before applying for a job so you have an understanding of the business and the industry
- communicate well and be genuinely interested in the job.
For more information on what employers look for in young workers, see the fact sheet 'Looking for a Job - Employer Advice for Young People' on the Labour Market Information Portal.
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…Or you can browse Job Jumpstart for other ideas and suggestions of what to do next.