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5 Essential Items for Your Graduate Job Hunt

4th December 2014
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Just graduated or in your final year and focused on making that first step onto your career ladder? Here are some essential items that your job hunting campaign shouldn’t start without.

Although 2014 saw the strongest graduate job market since 2007, if you’re one of those facing a student loan burden of over £40,000 and struggling to find employment this can be little consolation. When it comes to job interviews first impressions count. Although spending on some of these items might seem frivolous, remember that lasting impressions tend to be made in the first seven to seventeen seconds.

This means that scrimping on your interview suit or turning up in clothes that are more suited to the union bar could be costing you. If your budget simply doesn’t stretch to it, these are the pieces it’s worthwhile seeing if your family would be willing to help you out with, perhaps as a Christmas or graduation gift. And unlike that Christmas sweater or novelty gadget, these you’ll still be using these once your student days are just the memories you reminisce about over the office water cooler.

A good suit


Image: Robert Sheie

It might be a shock after three years in Converse and jeans but a quality suit is indispensable for ambitious job seekers. Even after your first round of interviews are over and you’ve secured your first graduate job, knowing that you have something smart for important work occasions is always going to be useful.

Although the old adage about ‘dress for the job you want not the job you have’ isn’t without its critics (if the only person who regularly wears a suit in your company is the CEO, you might want to reign in the power dressing), showing that you are able to look highly professional is never going to hurt.

Work bag


Image: Guy Sie

The backpack or casual handbag you took from lectures to library isn’t going to cut it at interviews or at work. If you go for high quality, well-crafted leather bag this is one accessory you could still be using well after you’ve got your first promotion.



Image: Maria Morri

At first glance, lipstick and foundation might not seem like the best use of cash, it’s important that any make-up worn is well-suited to a professional environment and not a nightclub. A session at a high-end cosmetic bar will ensue that you have a sophisticated and finished look that will impress at interviews.



Image: Simon James

A quality pair of cufflinks can be treasured for a lifetime, and help finish that all-important professional look. These make good family gift requests, since many jewellers offer the option of engraving, allowing family to personalise the gift by adding words of encouragement.

Help with your CV


Image: Desi

Although you should be able to access careers guidance through your university, a consultation with a specialist CV writer will ensure you know how to submit targeted applications that best display your skills, experience and talents. These are techniques that you will continue to be useful throughout your working life too.

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