ATConnect All >

The Big Question

How can I improve my chances of finding employment now and into the future?

With the competitiveness and ever-changing nature of today’s workforce, employers are often looking for skills that go beyond qualifications and experience. Employability skills or ‘soft-skills’ are the underpinning blocks of career building. They are generic and transferable skills that employers want a future employee to possess no matter what position they are applying for. However, these skills can also be developed to prepare young people for future learning and as well as being important for life.

Employability skills, also often called enterprise skills outline what a person needs to enter and effectively participate in a workplace. These skills can include:

  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Problem solving
  • Initiative and enterprise
  • Planning and organising
  • Self-management
  • Learning and Technology

There are many ways in which a young person can develop their employability skills including through volunteering, work experience, hobbies/interests, at school, involvement in the local community, completing short-courses, sport and other extra-curriculum activities. Now is a good time to talk with your sons about how they exemplify these skills or how they could be developed.

Employability skills are also an important component of a resume, often the most important part of a resume for a future employer. However, they can also be highlighted in a cover letter and used as an interview talking point. When completing a job application an applicant needs to ensure that they demonstrate to a future employer that they possess these skills. To effectively demonstrate this, make sure an example of a situation where you have demonstrated each skill is outlined. Decide on the most relevant skills for you and the job for which you are applying. Be specific and choose the most suitable example to showcase your skills.

As well as possessing and demonstrating employability skills another key factor in aiding a young person in standing out when applying for a job is a clear and well-written resume. The College has available the Career Tools program and the Careers team to assist students in creating a resume and cover letter. When creating a resume, the program breaks the resume into the main components making it simple to use. Once completed, the program saves the information and students can access the documents both while at school and after they leave making it easy to update or change any of the information. This program will be utilized in the coming years as part of the Careers program. However, if students are currently applying for casual positions they are encouraged to make an appointment with the Careers team to assist with their application. Next year, students in Years 9, 10 and 11 will undertake further learning in preparing them to navigate the world of work.

Don’t forget to read the ATCareers Bulletin for information on Employment including the future workforce and Career Exploration as well as information on Apprenticeships and Tertiary intuitions.

Melissa Peacock, Head of Career and Vocational Pathways