Careers and Employability
  1. Your career
  2. City opportunities
  3. Employers
  4. Prospective Students
  5. About
  6. Recent Graduates
  1. Planning your career
    1. The recruitment process
    2. Employment regulations
    3. Starting your own business

Planning your career

Sometimes it may be difficult to make a decision whether to start a job now, pursue further study or what direction to take next. We have set out steps below to help you make more informed career choices and to start planning for your career now.

Download our City Careers timeline to help plan your use of our services while you're at City.

Know yourself

It's important to understand your skills, interests, values and qualities, as well as possible areas for development, when choosing a career that will be both enjoyable and fulfilling.

Know your personality

Use a personality questionnaire

Answer a series of questions designed to help you understand ways in which you differ from other people, by identifying your preferred ways of thinking and acting.

Understanding your personal preferences can help in your career development by helping you learn more about the way you approach your work and your relationships, as well as career areas that you may be well suited for.

It is important, however, not to see the results of a personality test in a limiting way, as there are many jobs you may find satisfying whatever your preferences. Sometimes people like doing things outside of their preferred style, as this offers new challenges.

Personality questionnaires can give you ideas about your style, values, motivations and talents which, combined with your experience and circumstances, can help you to make better short and long-term career decisions. For example, personality questionnaires can help you to better understand:

  • Types of work well suited to your personality
  • Your style of working and how you approach different situations and people
  • How others might see you
  • Your main assets
  • Areas to consider developing
  • Career ideas to explore.

Take a quick and easy personality questionnaire based on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator philosophy to help you identify your preferred behaviour styles.

Job matching exercises

  • Prospects Planner - use this online resource to review your skills and abilities and relate these to jobs.

Career planning resources

  • Mind Tools - An online tool to help you understand various career skills including decision making techniques.

If you've taken one of the above questionnaires why not discuss the results with a careers consultant?

What can you offer employers?

To know what you have to offer employers, it is important to know what skills employers are looking for and to review everything you have been involved in (e.g. volunteer work, sport, internship/placement, casual/part-time work, gap year).

Employers like to see that you have thought about the skills you can offer before completing an application or attending an interview, as you will need to provide evidence demonstrating you have these skills, using examples from any employment and voluntary work you have been involved in.

As stated in the Key Skills Employers Look For career guide, your degree alone will not guarantee employment; employers like to see that you have developed certain skills through paid work experience, community involvement or voluntary work. Visit the Experience City website to find out about opportunities around City to develop your skills.

Working through your CV with a Careers Consultant can assist you with identifying skills you have used. It may also be helpful to assess yourself in terms of what skills you have developed and enjoyed using and what skills you may need to develop further for your future career.

Build your CV

Your CV should showcase your skills and experiences, both academic and professional, in a way that helps an employer quickly understand your qualifications and ability to succeed in the role they’re offering.

Writing your CV - a video guide

Decision making

Do your research

Once you have a better understanding of yourself and your career requirements, it is important to explore and research all your options in order to make an informed decision.

The following resources will help you do this:

You can also:

Talking to employers ('networking')

Networking is the ability to develop and maintain contacts and personal connections with a variety of people who might be helpful to you and your career (either face-to-face or on the phone or via digital channels like email). Networking can help you to become aware of opportunities in your chosen field and gain first-hand industry knowledge from professionals in order to make more effective career decisions.

Social media websites such as LinkedIn and Facebook have emerged as networking tools in recent years, but be careful to maintain a professional identity when using them, as potential employers often use them for recruitment purposes.

More information on networking can be found in our guide to making the most of a careers event.

To help you with networking, you can now order Student Business Cards.


Gain great experience

There are various ways you can gain experience while at City.

Find a job

Move forward

Key questions

The key questions you should be asking yourself when moving forward in your career planning are:

  • Where are you at the moment?
  • Where do you want to be?
  • How will you get there?
  • What resources/time constraints do you have?
  • How can you overcome any potential barriers to employment?

Book an appointment with a Careers Consultant to discuss these options.

Preparing for employer selection methods

Get the job and start your career!

We will contact you six months after you graduate from City to ask you to complete the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey.

On graduating, all City students are automatically made life-long members of the City Alumni Network. There are over 100,000 members worldwide.

If you find your job is not right for you, get in touch with us. We can provide career support for three years after you graduate.