Be Job Ready with These 6 Effective Tips

What does “job readiness” mean?

If you’ve spoken to a career counsellor, attended a “getting ready to work” session or had interaction with a recruitment or job agency, you may have heard the term “job ready”.  In short, it means that you’re ready to be in the workforce, but getting ready to work involves much more than just getting up and showing up. It covers everything from the start of your job search to your first month or so of work.

Before you start to look for work, at a minimum you’ll need to get up to speed with the following:

  • interview preparation,
  • personal presentation,
  • having a detailed resume and cover letters,
  • an up to date online profile,
  • having strong referees,
  • have good communication skills and
  • if any, an outline of your employment history

These, however, are only a small component of being job ready.

To go the extra mile follow these 6 tips, they will help you to soar above your competition and show potential employers that you are that superior candidate:

Research and Study Each Employer Who Interviews You

Job seekers often underestimate the importance of knowing about a company before showing up for the interview. Ideally, it would actually be best to do your research on each organization prior to even applying in order to determine if it offers a culture and work environment that is a good fit for you. However, you definitely want to understand key aspects about what the company does before meeting with them.

Obtaining a general idea of the business, its core values, history and reputation are typically easily found by looking at their website – or going onto a review site like Glassdoor.com will also give you a peek behind the curtain. Have a look on the company’s pages on JobGetter too! This knowledge can also help you to provide insight as to how your strongest skills might fit best. This insight will impress an interviewer and allow you to determine whether companies you apply to offer the potential for a long-term career.

Understand Your Specific Role Within the Company

Understand what your role would be — and what it wouldn’t be. Look closely at the written job description (go back to the job ad for this) before your first interview. Make sure you know what skills you’re expected to have so that you can talk about these in the interview. 

But know that most written job descriptions only get you started. Some are hard to understand. Others don’t always match the actual position. Come to interviews with questions to clarify the role. Test it with detail. For example, ask what you’d be doing day to day (and over the calendar year), who you’d be working with, what decisions you’d face, and what responsibilities you’d have.

This will also help you understand if you are a good fit for the job or not.

Skills and Development

Once you have understood the job description the next big question is “have you got the job-specific skills and knowledge”? Being able to articulate your skills, your gaps and areas of development are critical to being job ready.

One of the biggest frustrations of Hiring Managers is that candidates are not able to demonstrate during an interview that they have the skills required to immediately transition into a role, or talk to the gaps and how they will be able to address these gaps to still be able to meet the demands of the role.

A great way to address any gaps in your resume is to upskill by taking a course at TAFE NSW.

Foundation courses

As a part of the NSW Government’s Smart and Skilled initiative, TAFE NSW offers a great range of fully subsidised training designed to help you develop essential tertiary preparation skills, employment foundation skills and English language skills, preparing you for the workplace or further training. A number of these great courses provide a fantastic pathway to further qualifications with TAFE NSW. Best of all, these courses are available at no cost to you and provide full credits towards nationally recognised, job ready qualifications.

Check out their range of fully subsidised courses here.

Smart, Skilled, and Hired Youth Employment Program

If you are an eligible young person on the NSW North Coast and are looking to secure your perfect role, but maybe lacking qualifications, experience, or specific skills, TAFE NSW and the NSW Government’s Smart, Skilled, and Hired Youth Employment Program may help you overcome employment barriers and get into sustainable employment.

The program offers tailored support plans, including fee-free training to address skill gaps, work placements, access to transport, and assistance with getting personal protective equipment or a work ticket.

Learn more about the program and the eligibility criteria here.

Identify Your Transferable Skills

Transferable Skills are skills learned in one field or job that are applicable to gain employment and move into another. Sometimes people think that they can’t do a job, because the job-related skills are different to the job they’re applying for, and underestimate how many transferable skills they actually have.

For e.g. Maryanne has been a hairdresser since she was 16. She eventually opened her own salon, but after 17 years she developed recurring shoulder injuries from the work. She had always had an active role in training apprentices and thought she’d be great at training others. 

Because developed other skills such as managing her business finances, supervising staff and dealing successfully with clients over the years, she had skills that were transferable to teaching others and developing training plans to implement that training at her local TAFE. These were all transferable skills that helped her to get the job she wanted.

You can check your transferable skills by using this simple assessment tool.

Understand the Labour Market

Learn about the labour market trends and show a potential employer your awareness of where their industry is going, both now and in the future. Employers are super impressed with candidates who understand the big picture. It can also enable you to make comments about what you can bring to the employer in order to help them remain competitive. 

By understanding the labour market and labour market trends you will be able to understand the demands on your role in the industry and also what is required for the role in the future. This will assist in responding to questions such as “Where would you like to be in 3 years time” by understanding where your role needs to be in 3 years time.

Know Yourself

The ever-popular interview question “what is your greatest weakness?” isn’t just fluff.  It’s truly imperative that you understand your shortcomings so that you can improve upon them.  It’s also essential that you understand and are able to succinctly communicate the skills you possess that are most sought-after and pertinent to the job at hand. Clear communication and confidence are the keys to selling yourself.

Wrap Up

Whilst the above-mentioned tips are geared towards being job ready when embarking on or in the midst of a job search, you need to be job ready to remain employable as well. This can be achieved with lifelong learning, career development and taking ownership of your own career.


Your Turn…

How do you approach “job readiness”?  Do you think these tips will help you go from being good to being the best?

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