Why you SHOULDN’T give up looking for a placement

Aaisha BibiAaisha Bibi, International Placements, Second Year, UK Placements

Hi everyone, I’m back with another blog. This one is particularly useful (I hope) for those of you who are still searching for a placement. Yes- it can be exhausting and yes-you sometimes feel like giving up. But here’s a couple of reasons why you should keep going until you secure that placement.

Standing out from the crowd:

These days there is just so much competition, everywhere you turn people are competing for the best opportunities and finding a job is no different. This is why employers are so keen to find graduates who have some sort of work experience and a placement is a perfect way to achieve this. According to a survey by recruitment specialists Universum, 58% of leading employers value work experience among graduates rather than the grade they achieved. That is not to say that grades don’t matter, of course they do, but demonstrating that you have experience is what makes you ‘shine brighter’. A placement gives you the chance to show employers that you have those ‘practical skills’ to succeed in the workplace.

Turn your weaknesses into strengths

It’s not just about practical skills though, a placement is a perfect opportunity to learn more about yourself and identify your strengths and weaknesses. Before starting my placement, I was not very confident when it came to meeting new people and was a bit socially awkward. But through taking part in countless Monday morning team huddles, quarterly team meetings and planning sessions, I feel as though I have definitely noticed an improvement in my confidence skills. Now I am willing to express my ideas more openly in team meetings. Don’t get me wrong, it can still be daunting but having to communicate with my colleagues in professional scenarios, but it definitely gave me the push I needed to boost my confidence.

Meet the Professionals

Ever since I started my degree at Aston, I was really able to explore the different areas I could get into after graduating but as I am doing an English degree, I was never really sure exactly what I wanted to do as my options are quite broad. My placement gave me an amazing opportunity to talk to people who work in the areas I am interested in pursuing a career in and really pick at their brains to see what their role involves. Having conversations with people who have had experience working in the industry really helped me narrow down my options and also ask questions about what the job is really like. If you are someone who kind of knows what they want to do but are not really sure, a placement helps you to narrow down your options. You might finish the placement thinking ‘yes, this is what I want to do for the rest of my life’ or you might think ‘nope, this is definitely not for me’. Either way, you gain better awareness of the different areas of the industry which really helps you when making them all important career decisions.

There are just so many reasons why a placement is one of the best decisions I’ve made. It was not always easy though. Finding a placement took a lot of patience and perseverance and there were so many times I felt like giving up but I am so glad I did not as I definitely have had an amazing experience. If you are still looking for a placement – that is completely fine. I was also in the same boat and secured my placement later on in the year. Stay positive and think about all the amazing things a placement can do for you. And remember- Careers and Placements are here to help you!

I hope your search goes well. Remember- keep persevering!

Aaisha