April 25, 2023, by aoyab1
Dealing With Rejection
By Alice Bennett, student blogger
Whether you’re applying to graduate schemes or even part-time jobs, rejection is an inevitable part of the job application process. Here is some advice on how to deal with rejection and use it as a learning experience to help with future applications.
Learn from the experience
Interviewing and writing a CV and cover letter are all skills within themselves, and it takes time and some trial and error to perfect them. Workshops on improving CVs and interviews are actually provided by the university’s Careers and Employability Service, and sometimes even employers will give you feedback, so it is important to try and view every rejection as a learning experience rather than a failure.
Keep in touch
As university students, we are in the odd position of not being able to start work until graduation, so employers looking for immediate starts can’t hire us even if they think we’re right for the job. I recently experienced this; despite my CV citing all of the relevant skills and experience and doing well in the interview, the company was unable to hire me as they were looking for someone to start as soon as possible.
However, the interviewer asked me to keep in touch as he hoped more roles would become available in the next few months and gave me valuable advice and information on roles to apply for that would be good for me and my skillset that I didn’t know previously existed. If something similar happens to you, make sure to keep in touch! Even if nothing comes of it, they might still be a useful contact to have.
Dealing with disappointment
It’s really important to look after yourself during the stressful process of applying to jobs, especially if you’re looking alongside your studies in your final year. Although it might be hard not to take it personally, especially when you get your first rejections, it is essential to understand that it’s not personal. The job market is tough, particularly in the current climate, and especially with little experience fresh out of university.
In my experience, job hunting always starts slow with little progress, and eventually, all of the offers come at once! Job applications are a time commitment, and you can’t expect to get the first job you apply for. Make sure to persevere, again bearing in mind the more you do it the better you will get.
In fact, sometimes taking a break after university can be useful. It can get you thinking about what you really want out of a career and give you a much-needed break, especially if you never took a year out between school and university. It’s an especially good time to, again, work and gain experience to help strengthen your applications but also to save a bit of money, and try out what you like and don’t like. Time off can also be productive. Doing nothing for a period of time usually makes me want to get back into a routine!
So if you’ve experienced a lot of rejection in the job market, know that you are not alone and that it is simply part of the process.
Get in touch with the Careers team for helpful advice on making applications.
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