Posts Tagged “job search tips for new grads”
This article originally appeared on John Ababio College of Creative Education on June 15th 2020. We found it useful for our readers who are interested in fashion and design career pathways.
For the past 20 years, there have been some significant improvements in fashion design career pathways within Ghana’s fashion industry. Whether one has taken the liking to scroll down social media pages or reading fashion magazines it has become quite the norm to come across images of African models or young people dressed in garments made from African fabrics, a clear sign that African designs are being more embraced now than ever before.
Some of the key actors in the proliferation of African fashion have been the growing number of African designers who showcase their work within and outside Ghana including icon designers are Christi Brown, Pistis, Ophelia Crossland, etc.
The fashion industry in Ghana is proving itself attractive, fresh and highly profitable and the world is taking notice.
A lot of the credit and success of fashion designers can be linked with fashion schools and the quality of students they are producing.
Fashion schools in Ghana are playing key roles in the ever-growing industry. For individuals and students who want to take up a career in the fashion industry, the opportunities are enormous.
Students from fashion schools undergo a lot of training to help them develop a unique thought process. This enhances their creativity and helps them become experts in developing new ideas and concepts. Students are taken through illustration techniques, technical drawing, pattern drafting and draping techniques, tailoring, sewing and the use of digital technology in fashion among others.
They also gain an understanding of fashion trends, consumer behaviour, brand and market awareness, ethical and ecological issues facing the fashion industry. Again, they are guided to develop transferable skills including communication, presentation, problem-solving, critical thinking, research and teamwork.
Therefore, due to the unique nature of their training, students can be absorbed and function in many industries directly or indirectly related to their field. Let’s delve into some of the career opportunities one can pursue after fashion school.
FASHION DESIGNER CAREER PATHWAYS
The most popular career available to fashion students is to become a fashion designer. The fashion industry is booming as it’s an essential element of our identity and culture. Fashion designers create original clothing, footwear, jewellery, accessories etc. They develop sketches, select fabrics, make patterns, outfits among others. They visualise and produce designs by hand or using computer-aided design (CAD). The nature of their job keeps them up to date with emerging fashion trends in fabric, colours, cutting and shapes.
The work of fashion designers can be categorized into high street fashion, ready-to-wear, haute couture among others. Many fashion designers find themselves in the high street fashion where garments are mass manufactured.
Another category is the ready-to-wear. As the name sounds, established designers create ready-to-wear collections, produced in relatively small numbers.
there are also the haute couture designers who spend a lot of time on the production of one-off garments for shows, which is often impractical to wear. These designs usually endorse the brand and work of the designers.
FASHION RETAIL BUYER/MANAGER CAREER PATHWAYS
This is a career that is becoming more popular in the country. A career as a retail buyer or manager in a departmental store, fashion boutique or big brands can be highly satisfactory. Fashion retail buyers or managers are responsible for finding, negotiating, and purchasing fashion materials sold in stores.
It is a fast-paced job that requires knowledge of the fashion industry as well as the basics of business. As a fashion student, one gains a good insight as to what clothes will work with consumers and the market in general. The kinds of colours and designs which are trending, or which are predicted for the oncoming fashion season, are relevant pieces of information persons in fashion design are privy to.
STYLIST CAREER PATHWAYS
Stylists mostly work with briefs and use their knowledge in fashion design to produce visually appealing displays or outfits. This is a fast-changing role that would suit someone who loves to solve problems and collaborate with others using their creative flair.
Ones ability to collaborate and communicate event ideas is key as a stylist, as you’ll need to work with a variety of other professionals and agencies to finish a project. Stylists can pick the right pieces from anyone’s wardrobe or a designer’s collection and would suit the client’s character, body type and the kind of occasion the dress is getting selected for.
Stylists often suggest the kind of makeup, accessories, hairstyles for their clients. Big-time celebrities hire stylists regularly for red carpet events and parties. Stylists are also in demand for creating and organizing weddings, working with models, photographers, influencers, magazines etc.
TEXTILE DESIGNER CAREER PATHWAYS
As the name suggests, textile designers create 2D patterns, weave and printed fabrics among others. These fabrics may be used in interior designs or to make clothes. Textile designers work both independently or as part of a design team in both industrial and non-industrial settings. They use Fashion CAD (Computer Aided Designs) to develop patterns and textures. They are the masters when it comes to technological innovations in fabrics and materials.
The work settings for textile designers may differ and may include factories, backrooms or even working from home.
FASHION MAGAZINE/FASHION BLOGGER CAREER PATHWAYS
If you have amazing writing skills, you can pursue a career in writing for a fashion magazine or become an independent fashion blogger. Fashion magazines are always on the lookout for fresh new talent and you can be their newest find! Fashion editors and bloggers earn a lot of money for their generated content and invaluable fashion tips and hacks. You can also deliver your ideas in the form of videos, articles or stories on your social media. It is well documented that social media influencers on Instagram, Facebook and YouTube earn a lot based on comments, likes and subscribers.
As well as writing, you may also get involved in the production of the publication, taking on sub-editing and designing.
In conclusion, there are various career opportunities one can explore after fashion school. I hope this article serves as a good reference to select fashion design as a course of study. And most importantly stir and encourage you to pursue a sustainable career you will have better fulfillment in.
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Referees and References will always be needed to vouch for you whether you are searching for a job, furthering your education, growing your business and related career issues. In all these scenarios the recommendations that you receive from your referees can significantly influence your career success.
In this post, we are going to focus on how you can handle referees and references in your job search and as well, how to present references in your CV in the best possible way.
If you are a beginner, the usage of referees and references might appear confusing. Your reference was written by your referee and is thus a document. In the case of this article, your references is a section of your CV where you provide details about your referees who can vouch for you. A referee on the other hand is a person who can vouch for you professionally, academically or personally.
How to Manage Your References
References are usually requested in job descriptions where specific information could be needed. For instance, a job description could request for two referees whilst others could request for three. Whether a job description requests for a reference or not, it is important to still maintain a reference section in your CV. The following points should be taking into consideration when selecting referees:
Always make sure that the people you are using as your reference will be willing to vouch for you as soon as the need arises. Any undue delay on the part of your referee in vouching for you can spell doom for your search endeavors even if you perform well after an interview.
We at Sobiaonline always recommend that you have to discuss your search objectives with your referees. Keeping them in the dark will not help at all. If referees have adequate information about you it will help them to always give your prospective employers very powerful recommendations. One of the surest things that put’s employers and recruiters off is generic recommendation.
Depending on the degree of familiarity and rapport you have established with your referee, it is possible to always blind copy them when you are applying for jobs. This will help them to recommend you ton employers in the best possible way. We also advice people who serve as referees to always solicit the feedback of people they are recommending before submitting their recommendations.
How to Select Your Referees?
When selecting references, you would have to look out for people who should be able to vouch for your skills, abilities, and qualifications.
Selecting people who have good communication (written and oral) and writing skills is very desirable. These days, some companies prefers phone discussions with referees instead of written recommendations. The person recommending you should be able to defend your interest, qualifications and abilities in the best possible way whether in writing or via a phone conversation.
Secondly, it is important to select people you have worked with who preferably supervised your activities in the past.
There is no consensus regarding whether you can present your referees from your current place of work. Experts who advises against this opines that the last thing you want is for your boss to learn from one of their competitors that you have approached them regarding a new job. However, in the context of Ghana we deem it necessary that you should provide at least one referee from your current place of work. This should not necessarily be your “boss” but some one in a Senior position who can vouch for you. If you think that you do not want your current employer to be contacted you can state that in your application.
Before you use some one as a your referee, you need to make sure that you have discussed it with the person and then they have agreed to it. During the request, make sure you gauge the eagerness in their tone to make an informed decision. It is also important to verify that you have the correct contact information and discuss how they would want to be contacted. Generally, your referees should be willing to be contacted via skype, phone call or email. If after discussion with a potential referee you realized they are not interested in all these channels then, it would be advisable to get those who are comfortable with all these three channels.
How to Ask for References
You can ask for a reference via face to face discussion or email. It is advisable to start the process with a phone discussion and then meet the person later to discuss your search objectives with him/her. Always make sure you request for confidentiality if need be. Click here for a detail guide on how to ask for a reference
How to Present References in Your CV?
The reference section in your CV is usually the last item. It is acceptable to just write a section heading titled “References” and then comment ” available upon request” below.
In the context of Ghana, it is advisable to add at least two references to your application.
Do not number the references but rather present it in the format below:
Name of Referee
Name of Agency
Do you need to review your CV or professionally upgrade it? Click here to revise your CV with the help of Sobiaonline Careers.
Thank you for reading. Kindly share your ideas below
Job searching online has witnessed dramatic increase over the years. This trend has brought a number of benefits to job seekers and employers such as cost reduction, increased transparency and access to reliable and timely information on jobs and recruitment opportunities.
However, the problem of online job scams and Recruitment Fraud continues to prey on helpless and unsuspecting job seekers resulting in financial extortion and vital information request for identity theft.
In this post, Sobiaonline shares some useful suggestions to improve your knowledge on online job scams to help you navigate your job search with ease in Ghana and elsewhere.
WHAT IS A JOB SCAM?
A scam basically is a fraudulent or deceptive act or operation. Based on this definition and from experience at Sobiaonline, a job scam entails the fraudulent or deceptive use of job advertisements and other career offers (Both online and offline) to lure job seekers with the sole purpose of defrauding them financially or soliciting sensitive information such as personal details, credit card information and related stuff.
Based on our encounters and existing background information on this topic, we have classified job frauds into three main forms:
The first form of Job Scam occurs online through the internet. One way this form of scam occurs is poor regulation by job boards. Job boards put in their best efforts to prevent fraudulent job listings but some smart fraudsters can still manage to publish their listings unnoticed. Another form of online scams has been on the rise on social media where scammers take advantage of unsuspecting job seekers through which they extort money and other vital information. Thirdly, there has been an increase in email spam targeting job seekers. The other growing form of online job scam is work from home job scams which has been on the increase.
The second form of Job Scam is Offline job scams. The offline job scams takes the form of physical contact with fake employers. These scams are very well organised and have received little attention as compared to the online scams.
The third form of online scam occurs as Legitimate Job Scam: This days we have legitimate companies taking advantage of job seekers by extorting monies from them. This third criteria is not quite a scam as legitimate jobs are involved, but the recruitment process is shrouded in secrecy and fraud. To give you a scenario model:
lets say company A has a job vacancy for a secretary. They advertised the opening and received 1, 000 job applications. All thousand applicants are then invited to interview where they will be tasked to pay GHC 50 per applicant in the name of processing fees. Then, all 1, 000 applicants are called back again in the name of an aptitude test and are made to pay an additional GHC 50. The procedure goes on and on until just one candidate is picked. In a scenario like this the company can make several thousands of Ghana Cedis from the recruitment of just one staff. This is a legitimate job vacancy but the recruitment process is fraudulent (Disclaimer: This is just for illustration)
Why did we take time to discuss these types of job scams? By understanding the medium in which you can be potentially scammed and the motive behind job scams, you will be in the best position to fight it. Please read further the two main motives of job scammers below:
Access to Sensitive Information
Fake adverts are used to obtain sensitive information from people. These types of jobs request very personal information including bank details, insurance numbers personal information, bank statements, passport details, and driving licenses. Once a job is requesting such sensitive information at the initial application stage you need to take caution.
For Monitory Compensation
Fraudsters ask for advancement without a cogent explanation of what the money is going to be used for. We have for instance received numerous reports in Ghana where fraudsters are requesting for money for CV upgrade as a precondition for employment. You can use this link to find out how Sobiaonline can help spice up your CV to increase your interview calls. Other reports revealed medical examination, aptitude test fees, and processing fees as some of the reasons for payments often explained by corn artist.
With this in mind, the best way to avoid job scam is to avoid making financial commitment and sharing of very sensitive information with prospective recruiters.
HOW TO AVOID JOB SCAMS
- The companies used in most cases will be genuine companies but the job will be a scam! Always contact the company if you see something suspicious about the job
- Don’t accept a job offer without an application, interview, or discussion with the employer.
- You are promised high pay for not much work? Do not accept such offers
- You are told you have to pay for training? Do further digging and ask more questions
- Do not provide personal details on your social media profiles
- Do not pay money for background checks and processing fees
- Do not pay for a job. The employer should pay you for your expertise and not the other way round.
- The interviewer should call you if it is a remote interview and not the other way round
- Don’t share sensitive information or money until you are sure the company is genuine
- Avoid job descriptions that are vague, ambitious with limited specific information about the company.
- Trust your instinct. If you are having the feeling that the job is not genuine chances are that the job is not genuine.You will need to do more research.
- Leave what you are not doubtful of and follow what you are certain off.
- Make sure the email address identifies with the company.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE SCAMMED ALREADY
Contact the company and ask for your money back. You can alert relevant agencies if the company refuses to.
Make sure you provide reviews of the company on online websites as much as possible to warn other job seekers who might fall victims.
Report the matter to the police immediately, with copies of all correspondence, contact details of the fake organisation, and bank or credit card statements if you suspect that your identity may have been stolen for illegal activities.
Change your bank details if you shared your bank details with the fraudster
Report the company and the job details to the job board where this occurred to help them improve upon their listing.
We thank all job seekers who entrusted us with their information and advice on fraudulent job offers over the years. It has helped us to continuously improve our services. We hope to continue to learn and share with you
Click here to upgrade your CV with Sobiaonline Careers
A cover letter is a one page document which is forwarded with your resume when you are applying for a job. A Cover letter is also called motivation letter, statement of motivation, or letter of introduction.
The purpose of a cover letter is to provide a snapshot of your professional life and lure the reader to take a look at your CV.
Cover letters are very important for a number of reasons. In the first place, letters directly affects your CV open rates which directly relates to your call to interview rate. Secondly, cover letters enables you to tell a good career stories recruiters would want to hear which you can not directly showcase in your CV . Thirdly, a good letter helps you to further demonstrate your experience and fit for the position at hand.
A good cover letter should have the following ingredients:
Start your letter with a date, followed by the address of the employer, salutation and letter heading or title as shown below:
7th May 2020
Name of Hiring Manager
Title of Hiring Manager
Dear First Name of Hiring Manager (or Use Dear madam/Sir)
Re: Accountant (Job Title)
In the first paragraph state clearly the objective of the letter. Then introduce your self in one sentence or two highlighting your key credentials and qualities that can help you excel per the job at hand. Example:
Please accept my application for the position of Accountant. I believe the job duties listed align well with my skills in accounts payable and accounts receivables (here you would have to identify and highlight the main skill or competency the agency is looking for in the desired candidate)
The second paragraph can be dedicated to highlighting your academic attainments and experience you have gathered over the years. Make sure that everything credential you are putting in your letter here is relevant to the job. For example:
In my previous capacity as Accountant at Sobiaonline Careers, I managed multiple ledgers using quickbooks whilst acting as liaison between the external auditors and the internal unit. This background coupled with my ACCA and HND certifications makes me an ideal fit for this position. (If you could highligh some career accomplishments here, it will set you apart from typical candidates)
The third paragraph can be dedicated to demonstrate your knowledge about the company, the job you are seeking and other requirements such as work location, perks among others. To be able to do these effectively, you will need to conduct some research into the company before you start writing your letter. For example:
Having learned from the job description that you prefer applicants from Laterbiokorshi, it will interest you to know that I am quite close to your office and this could be an advantage to your company in terms of cost reduction and timely reporting. It will also interest you to know that I have been known for working during week ends …. (This paragraph in most instances distinguishes you from others and makes your application unique)
Use the last paragraph to demonstrate your passion for the available job opening by reminding the reader about the job you are applying for and more especially what the job means to you and as well, indicate your availability for an interview. For example
Having worked on many teams and as a people-oriented person, I am very enthusiastic about the possibility to work with a diverse team while managing sole responsibilities as an Accountant. I welcome the opportunity discuss how my qualifications would be an asset. My CV is enclosed for your reference. (Excerpt source)
Lastly, it is important to list the employer at the top of the page and your address at the bottom of the page in the format:
LinkIn profile URL
Need some one to spice up your letter for you? Take a look at Sobiaonline CV Services here
Thank you for reading. It is your turn to share with us how you write your Cover Letters using the comment box below
What Recruiters Want
Whether you’re looking for a graduate position, or planning on going straight into work, employer surveys continue to emphasise the need to have good key skills, transferable skills, the ability to network, and above all, the right attitude. Identifying your skills can really help you focus on which jobs might be good for you.
What skills are employers looking for in Me?
When it comes to recruiting graduates, attitudes and aptitudes are often seen as more important than formal qualifications.
Although technical and basic abilities are required to see through the initial application phase, other aspects such because personal qualities, attitudes, plus general aptitudes are after that seen as much more crucial.
Resilience is frequently reported by employers as a good essential quality for younger persons to have got – the opportunity to cope with challenges and criticism, be inspired to overcome obstacles, plus stay calm under stress.
A positive attitude to operate, punctuality, flexibility, verbal conversation skills, and the ability to make a professional introduction are all crucial when deciding whether to recruit a young person.
Almost half of employers explained they had not employed a young person since they felt they failed to have the right mindset.
What skills are lacking at my current state?
A significant amount of companies say graduates lack simple skills in numeracy plus literacy. A weakness within basic skills can impact efficiency in everyday tasks, regarding example, the ability in order to draw out information through written texts and directions, produce written reports, or even work through calculations plus make sense of statistical data.
Employers are furthermore concerned that people absence appropriate skills in issue solving, communication, teamwork, conditional thinking, self-management, and strength (able to deal with change plus pressure within the workplace).
Just how can I develop these types of skills above?
You will currently have a substantial array associated with skills and knowledge. This may be that a person are just not conscious of the skills and information you might have!
Many skills are usually transferable, which means a person can develop them within a learning, work, or even social context and make use of or enhance them within other contexts. They assist persons to be adaptable and flexible, and also to cope with change.
Transferable skills help you:
do things independently
know how to find things out
sort out problems
organise and manage your own work
get on with other people and make a good contribution in a team
Specific skills are those needed to do a particular job or work in a particular industry. Employers may set out you see, the skills needed to do a job and cannot employ those who don’t have them.
They are most commonly developed through vocational education and training, such as an apprenticeship or a foundation degree.
They are recognised by trade and professional bodies and may provide a licence to practise, or exempt people from having to take a professional exam after they’ve started a job.
You can maintain existing skills and develop others in the variety of ways, not simply through your education plus training. These are incredibly appropriate that you can reference in work applications and your personal statement, because colleges, colleges, and employers is going to be looking for the broader contexts in which a person have developed your abilities and experience.
Part-time function can help develop your own confidence and skills within teamwork, communication, and customer care. Turning up for function on time and getting able to handle items when it gets occupied all demonstrate you are usually committed and reliable. Part-time work may also help preserve basic numeracy skills when you have to deal with money or work out there quantities of products.
Sport builds up teamwork and organisation when you have to assist arrange events. Improving your own sporting skills through teaching requires commitment, motivation, plus perseverance – all excellent attitudes that you could talk regarding.
Performing arts are useful for developing confidence within communication and presentation. Preparing and organisation skills are usually developed by helping in order to run a performance, or even key skills by getting involved in writing programmes, or helping to work out costs for performances.
Clubs, societies, and voluntary work – organising a student debating club, acting as a treasurer with regard to a chess club, composing for community newspapers, or acting like a mentor to disadvantaged children are a few examples of the large variety of activities you could undertake. These offer many ways to develop different skills and demonstrate that you have a good attitude at the same time.
How are careers changing?
Jobs are progressively done on the proceed, any time of the day, in almost any location. Career paths are no longer linear – people are more likely than ever to switch careers, work with regard to employers of different sizes, and set up their particular own businesses.
Careers for the future will require particular abilities, qualities, and aptitudes, therefore you will have to be adaptable, versatile, willing to up-skill, plus motivated to adapt in order to different work environments.
Can it matter what and exactly where I study?
Employers state it’s difficult to get persons with science, technologies, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) skills in any way levels.
Forty percent of employers surveyed mentioned that they recommended in order to recruit graduates having a ORIGINATE subject.
19% of companies desired a business-related subject matter.
34% mentioned they do not have any choice for a degree subject matter.
Only 17% of companies said the university a good applicant attended was 1 of their top 3 considerations.
Important: Some professions and professions do need specific degrees, subjects, or even other qualifications, so usually check if you possess a particular career within mind before choosing your own degree.