Do you have any advice for somebody who graduated in 2019 but has been working in retail since then?

Asked by Anonymous - 1 month ago

I am really starting to feel like I have lost my chance at getting a good career-focussed job. I graduated last year and ended up sending off 50-60 applications which resulted in a few interviews and 0 job offers. Because I had bills to pay I ended up taking a job at a clothes shop and i started applying again from March. I just look at my CV now and feel like employers are going to think that i'm a professional retail assistant because who works in a clothes shop for a whole year after they graduate? Now that corona has hit I just can't see myself being able to land ANY kind of new career for a while which means I'm basically stuck here for another year. I'd like to work in a marketing role ideally but I don't know how I can get my foot in the door. Do you think there's anything I can do to help my chances even 3-6 months from now?

5 Answers

Ar Jama - 1 week ago

No. Most employers will understand. And any good employer knows that having a retail job in your CV is actually a really good thing: it proves you can do long hours, chat to customers and problem-solve. Here are three suggestions off the top of my head. 

1) Get a fresh set of eyes on your CV. Feel free to send it me on twitter @apjama.

2) I would also suggest maybe thinking about an industry/job you'r einterested in. Then stalk people that do that job on Linkedin. What did they do before? What qualifications do they have? Rewrite your CV accordingly. 

3) Use recruiters if you can. They only get paid if they get you a job. So maybe hit up a few on Linkedin. 

 

0 points

Anonymous - 2 weeks ago

I paid to get my C.V professionally tailored and it worked almost immiediately. 

0 points

H. Ahmed - 1 month ago

Apply for entry level jobs in the field that you're interested in & highlight your soft skills on your reseume (leadership/ collaborative/solution oriented etc.). Don't be afraid of rejection - keep applying and insha'Allah you'll land the right role. Just have faith and focus on what unique skills you have to offer. Most firms will groom you anyway & you'd be surprised on how many of them prefer to take someone that doesn't have to unlearn habits that do not fit with their management style. 

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Mahad Al-Qumeri - 1 month ago

Firstly don't worry too much about it, you'll be fine long term. 

What you need to do is continue working at retail but instead of applying for full time marketing jobs, you need to apply to marketing internships at places like startups. You can do this on indeed/escapethecity/etc. This will allow you to build your experience. Target non-paying internships becuase you're more likely to get it due to your lack of experience & if they don't pay tell them you got bills to pay & they'll let you work at your retail job for 2-3 days while the rest you dedicate to your marketing job. On the marketing internship, try to do as much as possible & get involved a lot, so you have loads of achievements to write on your CV when applying to the full time marketing role. Work at the startup/marketing internship for 6 months or so whilst working in retail, then start applying to FT marketing jobs. When you get the FT marketing job, you can leave both internship/retail job. And try to target big corporates' marketing teams graduate programmes like Ebay or Vodafone as they tend to have better salaries/benefits/good brand name/etc. I think some companies have a policy where they don't accept graduates who have graduated 2+ years so try to do all of this before June 2021. 

I doubt it but but when applying to internships/startups if they ask about your year in retail, just say you wanted to have a gap year to have a pause/think about what you wanted to do. 

2 points

Hawa Mire - 1 month ago

Networks + work experience matter more in social services versus your degree. Can you volunteer? Can you work as a seasonal/relief staff somewhere? Can you get a summer student job? These are great ways to meet people, learn about what's available and launch your career. Send me a note, maybe I can help point you in the right direction.

0 points

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