Make yourself more employable

You can make yourself a more attractive candidate for jobs by working on your employability skills and personal brand.

Employability skills

Employers assess candidates according to their skills, not just the degree they've studied and the grades achieved. In particular they are looking for a wide range of “employability skills”.

Top ten skills employers are looking for*

1. Work ethic
2. Verbal communication skills
3. Energy and enthusiasm
4. Analytical and critical thinking
5. Problem solving
6. Teamwork
7. Interpersonal skills
8. Written communication skills
9. Self-management
10. Initiative and enterprise

*Top 10 skills and attributes sought after in university graduates: Student and Graduate Employability Skills Survey 2015, Victoria University.

Compare your skills

Once you have an understanding of the key skills employers look for, you then need to do an audit of your personal skills to identify which areas you need to work on. There are three parts to completing a skills audit:

  • Start by listing the skills you think you already have.
  • Provide specific examples of how you have acquired and used these skills.
  • Identify what skills you need to improve or gain and how you will do so.

Your skills audit is a "live document", so keep it up-to-date as you acquire new skills or develop better examples to support existing skills. The examples from your skills audit should feed into your CV,  and you can also use them at interviews.

Book an appointment

If you would like a career development adviser to help you identify the skills you will need for a particular job, please make a 50-minute appointment via MyCDES.

Acquire more skills and experience

There are many ways to enhance your skills and experiences in specific areas. For example, if you need to develop your public speaking skills, you could volunteer to be the presenter next time you undertake a group-based assignment. Or you could join a public speaking organisation such as Varsity Toastmasters. Some ways for you to further develop your skill-set are:

  • Secure part-time work through organisations such as Student Job Search, other recruitment agencies or online job search sites.
  • Do voluntary work for hospitals, charities, community events and organisations.
  • Get involved with a club or society.

Clubs and societies

Clubs and societies provide opportunities to develop teamwork and presentation skills, communication capabilities, networking opportunities, time management and planning, as well as having fun.

Find out what clubs and societies you can join at our Clubs and societies page.