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International Students Have the Skills for a Career Online

Today's guest post is written by David Gross who is the managing director of InterGreater, a London based digital consultancy. In this post, David gives some insight into why foreign students are well-suited to a career online and, in particular, ‘SEO'.

What is SEO and why is it important?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. In the simplest terms, this is the art of helping websites rank as highly as possible for ‘natural listings' on search engines. To help explain what natural listings are, here is an example:

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How to Tackle that First Job Interview

You've probably heard all the statistics and stories about how competitive the jobs market is at the moment but when it comes to that first interview, the right preparation can take you far. Be ready for a new opportunity with a combination of thorough research, self-analysis and determining what employers are looking for.

It's a good idea to put in some study time on the company itself. The interviewer won't require you to know everything, but will expect that your interest in the post goes beyond the salary. Find out a basic overview of their structure and history with web tools like company house webcheck, look at promotional literature or their website and check out any articles in the media about the brand.

Now turn your attention to your assets versus their needs. Go over your own experience and then look through the job description and person specification, noting down by each point the skills on your CV which will show that you have what they want.

This done, you can think about specific questions they might ask. Many interview questions are competency-based, meaning they will be looking for examples from your life, which demonstrate your suitability.

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So You’ve Graduated...What now?

It's a wonderful time of the year for academics: you're either beginning a new year or starting to enjoy the fruits of having completed university. Your life of exams, studying and living off baked beans is over. But what should you do next?

With the jobs market at an all time low, the previously default option of going straight into work isn't such a foregone conclusion any more. There are a number of options open to you now and you will need to think carefully about them as you won't have as much freedom at any time in your life as you have now.

Many university graduates choose to make the most of their freedom and go travelling. If you are fortunate enough to have some money put away you might like to go abroad and see a bit more of the world before starting your working life.

For those who aren't fortunate enough to have a cash stash at the ready, working abroad gives you a number of new options. Many bars and restaurants around the world are crying out for travelling people to work short-term, allowing you to see the world without needing a wad of cash before you leave. What's more, if you find a place you really like you might even consider settling down there rather than in the UK. With many more countries around the world having brighter economies and bigger job prospects than home at the moment, this might prove to be a wise choice.

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5 Tips for Transitioning into a New Career

If you're transitioning into a new career, you may be faced with a number of challenges. From learning a new skill to learning new coworker's names, beginning a new career can be both rewarding and scary. This has been my experience in moving between careers and looking for upward mobility.

I've switched careers twice and because of this experience I've managed to accumulate some sound advice when it comes to the 'career transition.' In order to help make the transition a bit easier, here are five tips I've adhered to that help with the new experience:

1.) Listen and Learn

If you have prior work experience, it can be difficult to let go of your past achievements. When I begin a new career, I try not to hold onto the past too hard, as this can become a stumbling block on the road to success. In fact, I try to imagine myself as a whole new person, or a representative of my past self being reincarnated into a new life.

The reason for this is simple: no one in your new profession will care much about your past achievements. They may find your past experience interesting or compelling on a personal level, but when it comes right down to it they're more interested in what skills you presently bring to the table.

It's a 'what have you done for me lately' world.

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The Rise of Graduate Underemployment

We've known for a while that the jobs market has been challenging for graduates, but figures recently released shed some more light on the situation of ‘underemployment'. This is where graduates are employed, but in jobs for which they don't technically need a degree.

For the graduating class of 2010/2011, over 10,000 of them are in posts that fall into this category - such as customer service roles, cleaning, carrying out odd-jobs, and labouring. This is almost double the number of grads who found themselves in ‘elementary occupations' five years ago, further highlighting the fact that recent years and economic struggles - plus growing numbers of graduates competing for jobs - have made things tougher for those after graduate level employment.

However, at least we can take some comfort from the fact that these graduates are still in work. It's thought that 9 per cent of the 2010/2011 class was unemployed six months after graduating from university. This is roughly the same amount of graduates that were unemployed the year before.

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