Assignment 1: Career Viewpoint
Learning outcome 1: Define and contextualise employability for graduates in relation to their own career;
Learning outcome 2: Gather and analyse relevant career and labour market information
Career Research Report
OVERVIEW AND CONTEXT
Prepare a report demonstrating an awareness of the knowledge, skills and experience required by a recent graduate to enter a chosen area of graduate employment. The research required to prepare the report will support you in your future career planning and decisions. This report will be 1,500 words and will provide the basis of the information for your self-reflection and career action plan report - CW2
You are required to identity an area of graduate employment that you would consider for when you leave university. This could be EITHER a profession (for example marketing/Finance/Accounting/HR) OR an industry you are interested in (for example retail, sports & leisure, public sector, not-for-profit, travel and tourism.) Your research should be either in an area you aspire to work within or maybe an area that you want to understand more about.
Your research in your chosen profession/industry should include likely future trends in graduate recruitment, and should equip you with the knowledge to write a summary of the key skills, knowledge and experience expected from graduate applicants.
You are encouraged to use both primary and secondary research for this assignment. Primary research might include attending events run by the careers team, and/or events run by the professional bodies, or else through personal contacts. It might also include information from the guest lecturers for the module. You could consider talking to managers at work, if you have a part-time role, or else friends and family to enhance your understanding. Include in the appendix a log detailing who you contacted for primary research.
Having identified the profession/industry, you are then required to identify one current job being advertised that you would be interested in applying for in the future. This will form the basis of the second assignment. The advert should appear as an appendix, which you should refer to as necessary within your report. It is important that this is a graduate level job, and not one for an individual with many years` experience.
You are required to submit a written report of 1500 words. It is suggested that you use the headings shown in this briefing or you may use your own headings; what is important is that you clearly cover all areas outlined below.
The report should include the following sections:
INTRODUCTION - Provide a brief paragraph outlining the aims of the report and what profession/industry your assignment will cover. As this is your reflection, this section can be in the 1st person.
Analysis and Application- This section of the report should be as a factual reflection of the findings from the profession/industry you have chosen to research. You need to consider both primary and secondary research for this section. This section should be written in the 3rd person and should include the key information regarding this profession/industry in terms of:
• General trends which will impact on your chosen profession/industry. What changes are happening in your chosen profession/industry which might impact on the jobs you apply for and the skills and knowledge you will need. Consider the impact of globalisation and technology for example. This section will be based on your secondary research but might also include comments or views from anyone you interview for your primary research.
• The skills / knowledge and experience required - Using information from secondary research, relevant professional bodies, and relevant job advertisements, provide a summary based on your research of the key skills / knowledge and experience expected from an applicant at this stage in their career. Again, this might be supported by your primary research. You should aim for at least 5 personal skills and 2 areas of knowledge and expertise.
Evaluation - For this section you need to identify an appropriate vacancy from your chosen profession/industry. You should include the advertisement in full (not a website link ) in the appendices. Within the report, address these questions explain why this job role is of interest to you. How does it relates to your potential choice of industry/profession? Why do you prefer this job opportunity to others you considered? Is this a new/emerging job role within your profession/industry and therefore likely to be future proofed? This can be written in the 1st person.
You must reference all information used in the report, both primary and secondary, using the Harvard Referencing Guide.
Assignment 2 : Career Action plan and self-reflection
Learning outcome 1: Develop a useful and effective CV and LinkedIn profile;
Learning outcome 2: Analyse their own strengths and development needs in relation to progressing into employment and be able to construct a development plan
This report is a self-reflection report, which will enable you to identify a career action plan, based on the research conducted for the first assignment.
THE TASK - WHAT YOU ARE BEING ASKED TO DO
Following on from the research that you undertook in CW1 and making use of the feedback that you received on this report to assist you, you need to:
• Complete a personal analysis of what you have to offer this employer at the moment. This should include your current skills, knowledge and experiences, both academic and from other areas of
your life. However, it needs also to identify if there are any areas for development. For example: Where could you do with adding more evidence? What additional skills & experiences do you need to add?
• Once you have answered the above, you are in a position to develop your Career Action Plan. This should show both the short-term and longer-term actions required to prepare you for an opportunity
in the area you have researched. Your actions must be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-bound)
• Finally, you also need to prepare a Curriculum Vitae (CV) and LinkedIn profile. You are asked to complete these exactly as your situation is now, as if you were applying for the position you
identified. They can then be tailored and adapted for use in other methods of recruitment, for example on-line application forms.
THE REPORT - WHAT YOU ARE BEING ASKED TO SUBMIT AND SUGGESTED STRUCTURE
INTRODUCTION - Provide a paragraph outlining what your assignment will cover. From CW1, you will need to include a brief summary of the job opportunity that you identified and also the full list of the key skills and knowledge/expertise that you identified as being required. These will form the basis for your self-evaluation. (10 Marks available for this section)
• PERSONAL ANALYSIS - a general review of your current skills, knowledge and experience related to those identified in CW1. You need to provide evidence for this analysis, so you can include the feedback and information reviewed within the seminars as well as work experience, and volunteering.
The aim is to highlight current strengths, and also areas to focus your personal development around. Reflect on the following areas: What areas do you lack evidence in? Where do you need further examples / evidence in your applications? Where do you feel weak in your overall application?
• CAREER ACTION PLAN - Once you have identified the areas you need to focus on, you need to prepare a Career Action Plan which addresses both the personal development and specific career related activities you will undertake to take you forward.
This plan should include the knowledge, skills and experiences you need to further develop. You should come up with clear SMART actions to get you to where you want to be. You should show the resources you will use to move the area of development forward and the timescales you will complete these in. This should cover as a minimum the time remaining to your graduation. This plan can be presented in the form of a table
• CV - Preparation of a CV to apply for the graduate level position identified in your research for CW1, based on your current situation. Your CV should be included as an appendix and will thus not form part of the word count for the assignment.
• LinkedIn PROFILE - preparation of a LinkedIn profile based on your current situation. A snapshot of the profile should be included as an appendix, and include the following:- photo, headline and summary, education, skills (at least 4), groups (at least 2) and companies (at least 2.)
• CONCLUSION - A brief reflection on how you feel having completed the overall assignment, and how you intend to use the Career Action Plan.
You must reference all information used in the report using the Harvard Referencing Guide.