« Back Home »

Improving Your Employability

By: James Cummings

As population continues to grow at an alarming rate, it opens up a number of problems in its path. One of them is Unemployment. Unemployment continues to grow despite efforts by government to create policies to increase employment. Even where employment rates are marginally dropping, the numbers still remain unacceptable. The US unemployment rate is at 4.3%, with over 6.9 million unemployed persons.

Graduates continue to leave colleague every year, and are unable to secure employment. They may have good college grades, great skills with a lot to offer, but the employers simply do not notice them, or they are edged out by one criterion or the other.

This article highlights the need for individuals to improve their employability, ensure they are noticed by employers, and are successful at job interviews. Here are some tips on improving employability:

Choose a career path:

It is not enough to graduate from college with a major and try to get employed on just any related job. It is important to choose a career path that can be supported by your degree. Decision on that path can be based on passion, job availability, lucrativeness, and job satisfaction. A deep introspection should be done to determine each of these factors. Professional help can be sought from counsellors to help in deciding on this path.

With a career path, job search will not just be aimless and you can focus on certain job pools or recruitment agencies related to your chosen career.

Identify Your Skills:

Employment these days goes beyond just having a degree and choosing a career path. There is stiff competition with the high unemployment rates. As such individual skills provide an edge in the employment process. Identify the extra skills you have that set you apart from competition. It could be your writing skills, language skills, speaking skills, coding skills, managerial skills, etc. Everyone usually has that skill waiting to be harnessed but most are unable to identify theirs. Employers and recruiters will watch out for these extra skills, considered even more important than the degrees in some quarters. Identify your skills, especially as it relates to your chosen career path to give you the employability edge.

Improve on Yourself:

Having chosen your career path and brought to fore skills to improve your employability, the next step will be to improve yourself generally. It is important to try to acquire more qualifications in the chosen path. Get Board certifications, licenses, computer certificates. Hone your skills, sign up for an internship. All these will help to shape you even better for that much sought after job position. See it as an investment in yourself toward your ultimate job goal.

Learn New Languages:

Sometimes the degree, career path, skills might be right. You might have gone through many certifications and development programs but are edged out of a job due to inability to speak a language. A job opening might be in a country or region with foreign language. It is important to learn new languages especially international languages and local languages in your arrears of interest. Attend language schools, acquire online language certificates to reduce the potential language gap.

Market Yourself:

No matter how much skills or certifications you’ve acquired, the ultimate plan is to be noticed by your employers. Knowing the right places to look in your job search is important. Another way to go about this is to market yourself. Open social media pages and highlight your skills in your profile - Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, etc.

You can launch a website using a reliable web hosting service provider like Open Host.  Such web hosts will also allow you buy or register domain names, towards having a very fluid, secure and functional website to attract employers and recruiters and market your skills.

It is important to Treat the Job Hunt Like...a Job! That way, you improve your employability and avoid being part of the unemployment statistics.