Advice from the net’s
top career experts:
How to apply for a job in your chosen field. How to apply for a job in your chosen field.

What do the experts have to say about finding a job after commencing your study?

Open Colleges spoke to 14 of the internet’s top career bloggers to get their advice on finding the job of your dreams, how to network and tips for your resume.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Ariella Coombs
Ariella Coombs of CAREEREALISM

Ariella Coombs is the managing editor for CAREEREALISM.com, an online career advice magazine. Since starting at CAREEREALISM, she's become a total career nerd and loves writing about things like career development and job searching. Download her ebook "The Recent Grad's Guide to Getting a Job".

"If you’re not prepared, it can be easy to feel insecure about yourself and your abilities - this isn’t the impression you want to give off to potential employers!"

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Make internships a priority. Getting work experience early is so important these days. Yes, school is important, but don’t use homework as an excuse to put off getting internships. Find a summer internship, part-time internship during school, or even do a virtual internship. Any relevant work experience helps.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
I didn’t negotiate my starting salary, but after two years of working for a career advice magazine, I’ve learned that it’s important to do your research before negotiating. Learn what’s the average starting salary for that position? After you’ve done your research, determine your ideal starting salary for that job, but make sure it’s within reason. Also, know your "walk away" rate; what’s the absolute minimum you’re willing to accept without having to eat two-minute noodles for the rest of your life?

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
I had some pretty shaky interviews, let me tell you! It can certainly be nerve-wracking. For me, the best way to calm my nerves is to go in prepared. If you’re not prepared, it can be easy to feel insecure about yourself and your abilities - this isn’t the impression you want to give off to potential employers! Going in prepared makes you look and feel confident.

Also, remember they brought you in for the interview because they think you’ve got potential to be the winning candidate. They want you to work there just as much as you do. Keep that in the back of your mind when you start feeling insecure!

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
The one thing I wish I knew about job searching before I started was that you have to customise everything to match each company for which you apply - that means, you need to write a customised resume and cover letter for every job. It’s a lot of work, but as I’ve learned, the "spray and pray" technique does more harm than good.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
I like the idea of vocational institutes as they focus your energy on building specific skills and experience that will help you excel in your chosen field, whereas traditional universities typically require you to take a wider range of unrelated courses.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Always, always, ALWAYS include a personalised message! People want to know who you are and why you’re reaching out to them before they hit the "Accept" button. To increase your chances of getting accepted, include a brief message stating who you are, how you found them, and why you’re reaching out. It makes a huge difference.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
1.) Don’t include an objective statement - it’s a waste of space and it’s an outdated technique. Instead, create a personal branding statement to put at the top of your resume. 2.) Don’t use an old, unprofessional email address you created in High School. Instead, create a simple, professional email address using your name. For example, you could do john.smith@gmail.com, j.smith@gmail.com or smith.john@gmail.com . 3.) This should go without saying, but don’t try to fool employers with those little "tricks" you pulled on your college professors like fiddling with the format to make a paper look longer. For most university graduates, a longer resume does not equal more experience, it just means more paper in the trash can.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Laurence Hebberd
Laurence Hebberd of The Undercover Recruiter

Laurence Hebberd is Editor of Undercover Recruiter and Community Manager for Link Humans, a social media agency based in London, UK. Alongside social media, Laurence loves music and comedy!

"Always be open to discussion, but be confident at the same time."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Be prepared, hunt early and get your resume up to a fantastic standard!

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Always be open to discussion, but be confident at the same time.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Go for a walk, drink some water or listen to music - distract yourself for a while before going in.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
Apply for as many as you can, as you aren't always guaranteed an interview.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
They may have more practical skills than university students.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
When networking on LinkedIn, always personalise the message.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
Avoid using swear words or obscenities, check your spelling and grammar (you don't want bad spelling or grammar) and always make sure information is relevant.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Nisa Chitakasem
Nisa Chitakasem of Position Ignition

Tips from Nisa Chitakasem, Founder of Position Ignition and the Career Ignition Club, the UK’s leading career development and career enhancement specialists.

"Don’t spam. Join relevant groups on LinkedIn and get involved in the discussions that interest you. "

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
When looking for a job, whether you are doing it for the first time or not, one of the keys to success lies in how clear you are about exactly what it is that you want and are looking for. The more specific you can be about the type of role and job you want, the more likely you are to get it.

What we find is that many people spread themselves too thinly, going after any job that they can think of. A lot of time can also be wasted sending out hundreds of applications that may end up coming across as quite generic because the person applying hasn’t really got their heads around exactly what that particular job entails.

Think about what you can do, what you want and exactly where you fit in. By focusing your attention onto your particular niche area you should be able to find out more about that particular industry or role and to put across a much more compelling story when you go into interviews.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
This is a great question and is often something that people find challenging, which is why we’ve created a step by step guide: ‘Get Paid Right, From the Start’ which looks at this in detail. There are many elements to a successful salary negotiation and again it’s important to know what you want from the outset. It’s also important to make sure that you are applying for a role which is at the right pay level in the first place. Then it’s useful to establish what your options are and to think about who you will be negotiating with. Is it a negotiation through a recruiter, with your potential boss or with the HR department of a company or someone else?

Think about the whole pay package, not just the salary component and work out what combinations of different things are acceptable to you or not. Get a good understanding of what the market rate is and where you would fit into it and negotiate based on the value that you can bring to the company. This should help you to position yourself accordingly in a salary negotiation.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
One way to alleviate nerves is to prepare as much as you can before the day. The more you know about the company, the interviewer, the process, the location and about the other aspects of your interview, the more confidence you will be. What you want to be doing here is to minimise any surprises to you on the day. Simple things like knowing how long the interview will be, how many people will be interviewing you, how to travel to and from the interview place, getting used to hearing the sound of your voice for example, can all help you to feel more prepared and less nervous.

On the day itself it is good practice to get there early so that you have time to settle down, to get a glass of water, go to the toilet and to calm your nerves. Remember to breathe, talk slowly if that helps and give yourself time to think before responding to questions.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
What isn’t always so obvious to people when they are first starting out, is the fact that when you go for an interview it is as much about you interviewing the company as it is them interviewing you. Finding a job is about finding a good fit. If you don’t get a job offer it doesn’t necessarily mean that you would have been bad at the job. A lot of these things come down to the company, the culture and the working environment as well as one’s ability to do a particular role well.

Therefore, when applying for a job don’t only think about the role but make sure that you research and understand what type of company and culture you’re about to walk into. When you go for the interview, see if you can establish for yourself whether you’d really like to work there or not. It is important to realise, and to remember, that finding a job is as much about your choice as it is about being chosen.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
For graduates who have received vocational training, you have the advantage of having gained real experience in the industry. This is tremendously valuable when seeking your first job since you will have a real insight into the challenges that you would face in your role.

Having that deeper understanding of what your role really entails and having experienced it during your course, gives you a good grasp of the career that you have been working towards and are about to step into. This experience can bridge that gap between studying and working life and is something that you can discuss about in detail when talking to potential employers. It can also help you to hit the ground running when you do land that job.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Don’t spam. Join relevant groups on LinkedIn and get involved in the discussions that interest you. It’s a great way to start conversations and getting to know others in the group who have similar interests to you.

Be selective about the people that you contact and connect with. It’s more useful to build a strong and valuable network than to build a huge one where you have many connections but very loose ties to each person.

Take a look at our 125 LinkedIn Job Search Tips eBook, which provides a step-by-step guide on how to use LinkedIn effectively for your job search and how to get found by the right people: Think about your profile and what you want to be known for. What do you want people to associate you with and come to you for? Make that clear on your profile and ensure everything else you do supports that.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
Your age, address and photo. None of these belong on your resume and they are not relevant to your job. By providing this information you are giving your potential employer the opportunity to draw assumptions that are likely to work against you and may also be incorrect.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Joshua Waldman
Joshua Waldman of Career Enlightenment

I'm the author of Job Searching with Social Media for Dummies and I speak to students around the country on the real strategies for finding work today. I've also designed a curriculum for post-study career centres to use to get this information out to students. You can read more of my advice about networking and LinkedIn here: //careerenlightenment.com.

"Most students I talk to are seniors with five people in their LinkedIn network. This is a huge mistake."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Don't wait until your final months to get serious about your career. I did that. I waited until my last week and made some pretty bad choices out of desperation. (Like following some girl I barely knew to Japan to teach, hating it and leaving after 9 months).

I don't mean finding a practical major. I mean start having conversations with people outside of school, such as alumni, about life and the options that you have available. Consider volunteer opportunities that might get you connected with influential people. Start building a large LinkedIn network...do this early.

know it's painful to face. And I know you care more about passing classes and having fun than facing life after university. The people who have the courage to deal with it sooner will be more successful later.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Take what you can get. Honestly. Unless you have very rare and very valuable skills to offer an organisation, you don't have much power in negotiation. You have to earn the right to ask for a higher salary through the acquisition of valuable skills and experience. Don't look for shortcuts. Your employer will respect the fact that you don't have an attitude of entitlement, because chances are your competition will.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Breathe. Breathe deeply. And most importantly, practise. I practised for an hour a day for a month before my first interview as an MBA. I practised with my career coach, in front of a camera, and in front of the mirror. I wrote out my answers, and delivered them again and again. This was the only reason why I didn't piss my pants when three interviewers grilled me in a dark, cavernous room.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
Don't bother following your passion. That's terrible advice that puts way too much pressure on yourself. I was very idealistic. I wanted to work in the green energy field and save the world. And it took lots of failures to realise that it just wasn't for me. I wish I had built up a very specialised set of skills and then marketed myself.

I made the mistake of blasting out hundreds of resumes and the two companies that bothered to get back to me were so unimpressed by my actual qualifications, they never called back.

It wasn't until someone I knew referred me to a job that I actually landed an interview. And I did well in that interview because I had two hours of sleep after an international flight, and just answered the questions so directly and honestly, they loved it! Who knew? Lesson: It's all about your network.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
Don't get me wrong. I think there's value in education for its own sake. And I'm glad I got a Religious Studies degree (sort of). But most academics don't understand that after you graduate you have to face reality. They often see career issues as beneath them, while they vainly try to recruit you to their graduate courses.

I've been told that most engineering graduates would much prefer to be English majors, but if they're going to invest so much money into their education, they need to make sure it pays off with a major that will help them get hired.

A vocational qualification will simply give you marketable and valuable skills without pretending. It's a much more practical path. And if you want to study philosophy or international relations, then you can listen to iTunes University for free! I admire intellectual curiosity and critical thinking. But do you need to go $100K in debt for it? So good for you for picking a vocational qualification. You're the smart ones. Really!

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Start early. Most students I talk to are seniors with five people in their LinkedIn network. This is a huge mistake.

The number one way you're going to get hired is through networking. And that takes time. So start your LinkedIn networking as soon as you can, and get up to 500+ connections as soon as you can and by any means necessary.

You can't network in LinkedIn until your profile looks good. So use this tool to grade your profile and get tips to make it better.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
No idea. I don't use resumes and if you can avoid it (i.e., by using networking), do so. If you have a good LinkedIn profile, use it to network. And if someone asks for your resume, send them the link to your profile or just convert your profile into a resume format.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Farnoosh Brock
Farnoosh Brock of Prolific Living

I am a professional career and online business coach and published author and speaker. I help frustrated corporate employees understand what they are doing wrong so they can get ahead and get promoted faster at their jobs. I also help employees who want to leave the corporate path to start their own online business ventures and turn their passions into profits.

"You want to negotiate fair and strong but within reason or else they won't respect you as someone who knows how things work."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Be confident and professional. The number one reason that most students fail to advance or secure a good position is their poor attitude and lack of initiative. This is really unfortunate because the intention of a graduate is to succeed but the rules of the game are very different in a company structure than in a university, TAFE or college setting. So I strongly urge you to be confident (but not arrogant) and to show initiative to do whatever it is your new employer needs for them to reach their goal. You will be successful if you do this.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Going about it with gratitude, with showing a lot of genuine interest in working for the company and yet at the same time, not jumping at the first opportunity or acting desperate. Finding that balance where you have leverage and you imply that you have other opportunities to consider so that you can have some negotiation power. Also, know the salary ranges of your position and industry and do your own research and homework. You want to negotiate fair and strong but within reason or else they won't respect you as someone who knows how things work. Also, carry the confidence over into your negotiation. If you are willing to let the opportunity go, you can be even more aggressive in your positioning.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Meditate. Go for a run or do an hour of yoga or whatever sports or exercise that you do, so you can expend your nervous energy. Then use some positive affirmations and repeat them to yourself. Here are two good ones:

1. I can handle any question the interviewer asks me with poise and confidence.

2. I am a smart hard-working and valuable asset to any organisation.

Use these phrases or mantras and repeat them several times before you go into your interview. And remember, whatever happens, this is just one of the many, many opportunities that you will have for work experience so don't be too attached to the results.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
I wish I understood the power of confidence, affirmations, meditation, my own value and the importance of a great positive attitude at all times.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
I find that vocational training graduates have a more practical know-how of their field whereas university graduates have had more theoretical hands-off studies in their curriculum, so the transition to the workforce for the former group may be easier.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
I would say go in with a giving attitude. Give endorsements. Offer recommendations (where appropriate). Connect mutual contacts where it makes sense. Engage in groups that are of interest and respond to questions. And write your LinkedIn profile as a story not as a dry boring resume. Think of it as your strengths and gifts to the world.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
1. Weaknesses - they are important to know for you but don't put them on your resume.

2. Basic stuff you should know such as MS Office or Google docs or other elementary technical knowledge. Just say you are proficient with the web and technology.

3. High school awards. Or put them but don't put too much stock into awards. Focus instead on what you have accomplished that has made a difference.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Anita Bruzzese
Anita Bruzzese of 45 Things

I'm a journalist who has been specialising in writing about career/workplace issues for more than 25 years, and have written for top publications such as USA Today. I have written two career books, appeared on the Today show and been interviewed for magazines such as Glamour, Cosmopolitan and O, The Oprah Magazine.

"Be professional."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Use your connections! Work with those in alumni associations, talk to friends, family, teachers and counsellors who may be able to offer you introductions.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Do your research. Know the pay rates for your salary in your area. Look on salary.com or glassdoor.com so that you're negotiating with facts.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Practise, practise, practise! Role play with a friend or family member so that you're prepared for standard interview questions, and then tape or video your "interview." Look for ways to improve your answers, but stay authentic and enthusiastic. That will win over employers.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
To do more research on the various places where I applied so that I could speak more knowledgeably about the organisation and how I could help them.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
These schools usually work very closely with employers to develop the specific skills that companies need now. They are often on the cutting edge of industry innovation so that graduates are ready to hit the ground running.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Suzi Dafnis
Donna Svei of Avid Careerist

Donna Svei is an executive resume writer, and retained search consultant. She blogs at AvidCareerist.com and has been featured by Fast Company, CBS, Lifehacker, and other major media outlets.

"Vocational training gives you readily marketable skills."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Do internships while you're studying.

2 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Practise interviewing. Have someone interview you while another person video tapes you. Once you're aware of nervous "tells," you can control them. Dale Carnegie said that it's hard to get rid of butterflies, but you can teach them to fly in formation.

3 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
Start at the beginning of your final year of study, not after you finish your qualification.

4 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
Vocational training gives you readily marketable skills. Ask about placement rates and employers before you enrol.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Rich deMatteo
Rich deMatteo of Corn On The Job

Rich used social media strategy to build his blog and career coaching business, Corn on the Job, into one of the most recognisable brands in the online career space. Once Rich realised how much fun he was having developing social marketing strategies and building communities, he worked with Marty McDonald on creating and launching Bad Rhino Social Media.

"Connect with 10-15 people each week."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
My number one tip is to start interning early. Making connections and building experience early is the best thing a university student can do to improve the chances of them getting hired after graduating. Start in your first few years and look for a long-term internship. While it would be nice to get hired from that company, it won't always be the case. Having an internship that lasts for several months or more will show interviewing companies that the student was liked and performed well enough to have been kept on board.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
To be fair, graduating students don't have a ton of room for negotiation. If you aren't happy with what a company offers, then maybe it's best to turn the job down. The best thing to do is to tell them the truth about what you're looking for. If that's not what they're willing to pay, then be honest with yourself and make sure it's enough to be happy.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
I tell every job seeker I work with the same thing. The job seeker is also interviewing the company. If they aren't what you'd want from an organization then you don't have to take their job when they offer it.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
It was a different time when I graduated 10 years ago. It's much harder now. Back then I wished I knew more about applicant tracking systems and how to format the resume for it. That means, no colour, no PDF and no images.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
I think it changes from job to job and how much experience a job requires. Students in vocational training receive so much more hands on training, which is valuable.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Connect with 10-15 people each week. Within a year you'll have made a fantastic network for yourself.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
1. Objective statement. Not needed. You can explain that in your cover letter.

2. Colour, images, etc.

3. Grammatical errors. This gets noticed.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Frederique Bros
Samar Birwadker of Good Co

Some have called Samar a serial connector-of-dots, and he’s never denied it. Having cooked up the Good.co concept in the spring of 2012, he quickly realised how obscenely lucky he was to have stumbled upon a cause that has attracted a scary-smart team of believers. In line with Good.co’s purpose of creating happier and more productive workplaces, Samar firmly believes that there is no such thing as a bad workplace or a bad employee, just a bad fit. He’s found that when you love your job, work feels less like work and more like play. Having discovered his calling, his evil master plan is to help everyone find their "WorkMatrix" - that sweet spot where your job seamlessly fits your personality, goals and lifestyle - through Good.co. Discover your career personality! Click here to download Good.Co for iOS via the iTunes app store.

"It's increasingly common to have degrees these days, and common also for people to apply for jobs not directly related to their degrees."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Prepare to put in a lot of work to land your first job. Many times, people (of all levels) simply send out a handful of resumes per week, hope that someone will take the bait, and wonder why they’re having a difficult time landing a job. In today’s economy, things like personal branding have become almost mandatory, as employers want to hire someone who is passionate and excited about their career.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Do your research and be realistic in your expectations, but don’t lowball yourself either. The first step in successfully negotiating a starting salary is just that - negotiating. Unfortunately, many people at all career stages fail to do so due to the fear of rejection. While a difference of a few thousand dollars may seem minimal, research has shown that this can cost the average professional up to one million US dollars - or more - throughout their career. (LINK: //www.good.co/blog/2013/07/26/career-mistake-most-people-make/) On the flip side, it’s also important to be realistic about how much you should earn based on your industry, location and work history.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
First, know what makes you nervous - we're all different. Is it social anxiety, worry about not getting the job, or something else? Remember it's normal, even beneficial, to be a bit nervous before an interview: studies show most of us are at our best when we're slightly under pressure. If you feel you're particularly nervous, make sure you do everything to give yourself the best chance of doing well: get a good night's sleep before the interview, prepare thoroughly (including expecting the unexpected - some interviewers like to throw curveballs to see how you deal with them!), and dress for success. If possible, find out something about the people giving the interview, and the room/building where it will take place, in advance. New people and places are less intimidating if we familiarise ourselves with them beforehand.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
I wish I'd known how different the world of work can be from a student environment. There are complex codes of behaviour, fine points of etiquette, and the challenge to sell yourself without being unrealistic or seeming over-confident. A lot often depends on the interview itself more than it probably should - it isn't enough to let your resume speak for itself, you have to have a little showmanship, too. Also, I wish I'd known that it's not unusual (though not always legal or ethical!) for jobs to be unofficially allocated internally before interviews even take place - it can be very disheartening to be turned down for a job which seems a perfect fit for no obvious reason, but there are many factors behind the scenes, so don't take it personally.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
It's increasingly common to have degrees these days, and common also for people to apply for jobs not directly related to their degrees. Receiving targeted skills training and practical experience can be an advantage over a pure academic degree, which confers skills in understanding and disseminating information at a theoretical level. Having a vocational qualification also demonstrates focus and planning for your future career, as they tend to be more specialised than many academic degrees.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Make sure your profile is completely filled out and that everything is well-written and attention-grabbing with no silly mistakes. If English wasn’t your best subject, I’d suggest you have a friend proofread your profile. Showcase your expertise or interest in a certain subject area by utilizing LinkedIn’s new publishing feature. Join and engage with industry-relevant groups and make connections. If there’s someone you would like to connect with, either have a mutual contact introduce you, or write the person a message explaining why you’d like to connect. Take full advantage of every feature the site has to offer, but - and this is very important - remember good etiquette. (Tips: //www.good.co/blog/2013/08/27/linkedin-etiquette-tips-best-practices/ )

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
1. Irrelevant work history: While your high school gig cooking fries at Bob’s Hot Dog Stand may have helped you land a few gigs in college, it will likely look out of place on your professional resume.
2. Menial tasks: It’s important to focus on high-level tasks and leave off the small stuff. A friend of mine is a manager at a marketing agency. She’s been sending out her resume for months but isn’t getting any responses and couldn’t figure out why, so I agreed to look over her resume. Within minutes, I realized what the problem was - the job description was so cluttered with menial tasks, that it made her sound like anything BUT a manager, likely making her appear extremely underqualified for any position she was applying to.
3. Your picture: Unless you’re applying for a job as a model or actor, do not include your picture on your resume. Employers that are conscious of hiring laws will likely pass you over. Be leery of any company that asks you to include a photograph - that’s a huge red flag.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Karalyn Brown
Karalyn Brown of Interview IQ

Karalyn Brown is the Founder of www.interviewiq.com.au, a consultancy that helps people find jobs, which is one of the most popular career blogs in Australia. Karalyn has pioneered technology and innovation to help job seekers. She is the co-developer of the myPitch app - an app that helps you sell yourself in 30 seconds – and she is also the most connected Australian woman on LinkedIn.

"You should make sure you know the general rates for your industry, and not accept anything that is a lot lower. "

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Think carefully about what you'd like to do, and even though you do not have experience, think about the impact you'd like to have with an organisation three to four years down the track. It's your ambition to make a difference that will set you apart at this stage of your career.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Honestly, there is no secret as most of the cards are not in your hands. At this stage of your career, in many professions you do not have the track record that makes hiring you not seem like a risk. Generally graduates without work experience need a lot of induction and training. Many organisations who employ graduates have a salary range, or salary in mind. You should make sure you know the general rates for your industry, and not accept anything that is a lot lower. State that you have done your research around rates for graduates, so your expectations are in line with that.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Preparation and mock interviews around questions to expect always help. However there's a lot of research around how important physical exercises are to increase confidence. Google "TED talks and Amy Cuddy" to watch her research on how power posing for 2 minutes before an interview increases testosterone and decreases cortisol - both of which improve confidence. It's an easy thing to do, and research says it makes a huge difference to your chances of success.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
How important playing to my strengths are and having a passion for what I do is important to career success. That would have helped finding the right career, company and role.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
This is not my area of expertise, so I am making this comment based on my perception. I think the answer to that depends on your profession. For some professions such as science or medicine, the research rigour and applied "thinking" skills are required and I think a university education may be better for that. However, with vocational training my take is you receive more practical skills that you can quickly apply to the workplace.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Do it! Make sure your profile is well populated, and think about the impact you'd like to have in the world when you put something online. Networking is not about you, it's about the difference you make to other people. The earlier you build a network, the better off you will be throughout your career as this will help you be aware of roles that come up, even if they are not advertised.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
- What's in it for you – in terms of your career objective.
- How your achievements have benefited only you.
- Age.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Chandlee Bryan
Chandlee Bryan of Best Fit Forward

Chandlee Bryan is a writer and career advisor at Best Fit Forward. She is the co-author of the book The Twitter Job Search Guide and she has also worked as a recruiter and professional resume writer.

"I wish that I had taken more time to research starting salaries and negotiation techniques."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Don't just look for a job, look for an industry that needs employees. Find an industry that is actively seeking candidates -- and can't find enough of them -- and see if you can find a job within that industry.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Research salaries for the same position in other companies and wait to hear the employer's initial offer before you name your target salary. If your goal is to talk first, take a deep breath and be ready for a short period of uncomfortable silence. Aim too low initially and you may be underpaid. Aim too high and the employer may screen you out due to cost.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
I recommend Amy Cuddy's TED talk, "Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are." She offers simple strategies you can use to increase your confidence quickly.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
I took the first job that was offered to me. It was a great organisation but the pay was low. I wish that I had taken more time to research starting salaries and negotiation techniques.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
Vocational training institutions and traditional universities both offer value to their graduates. Traditional universities often prepare students with critical thinking and analytical skills that can be used across someone's career -- skills that can be applied in many new and different situations. Traditional universities teach you how to learn; vocational training often teaches specific skills and techniques used to perform a certain type of job. In other words, vocational graduates sometimes have the advantage of being prepared to perform a specific job in high demand. Traditional graduates have the skills and ability to learn and adapt to different jobs.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Know how LinkedIn is used in your field and network with care. Instead of sending blind invitations to people you don't know, join groups and participate in discussions.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
Resumes typically don't include the first person or use of "I "or "my". Resumes also should not include a list of references or the phrase "References available upon request".

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Asya Bodeva
Asya Bodeva of Career Geek

Asya is the Editor of Career Geek Blog. The blog was founded in 2011 and its focus is providing independent career advice to students and graduates. For more information and guidance on Employment, Education and Enterprise, visit Career Geek Blog. You can also find Career Geek Blog on Twitter and Facebook.

"The secret would be to know your strengths, skills and experience and use these to your advantage. "

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
My number one tip for getting a job straight out of study would be to persevere and not give up. The employment market is extremely competitive and you need to be prepared for the realities of it. If you don't have work experience, go get some straight away!

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
The secret would be to know your strengths, skills and experience and use these to your advantage. Negotiating a salary is best done from a position of strength. So make sure you're confident in your abilities and can substantiate your confidence.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Prepare as much as you can. Knowing yourself, the company and the job inside out will give you the best chance possible of doing well in the interview. The second thing to consider is that practice makes perfect. The more interviews you go through, the more confident you'll get.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
I wish I knew how much experience mattered.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
The hands-on experience and the practical application of knowledge. Having the opportunity to put the theory studied into practice is one of the biggest advantages of vocational training and courses.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Use LinkedIn to its full potential. Join groups, take part in discussions, and follow companies. Do your research, connect with the right people and add a personal touch. Think about what they would get out of knowing and interacting with you. Then offer it to them.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
1. Too much personal information.
2. Irrelevant work experience/jobs.
3. A generic personal statement that does not relate to the job you're applying for.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Irene McConnell
Irene McConnell (nee Kotov) of Arielle Careers

Irene McConnell (nee Kotov) is Australia's leading personal branding strategist, LinkedIn expert and executive resume writer.

"It's OK to show that you're nervous."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Corporate employment is still the most popular option, however your options don't stop there. Consider joining a start-up or becoming a project-based contractor.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Don't commence salary negotiations until you're certain that they love you. Wait until your employer makes you a job offer.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
It's OK to show that you're nervous. Don't feel like you have to suppress your emotions - doing so will only make you look odd. And don't forget to breathe.

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
Prepare for interviews; don't try to wing it. Research an exhaustive list of possible questions and practice answering them - first in front of a mirror and then in front of friends.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
Vocational graduates have a huge advantage because they're not entering the workforce with a massive accumulated debt hanging over their head.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
LinkedIn is no different to face-to-face networking in the sense that you must hold yourself to the same standard of etiquette. Don't SPAM or badger people. Approach the platform with a mindset of "what can I do for people in a way that also benefits me"?

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
1. Corporate buzzwords and superlatives.
2. Referee names and contact details - this simply takes up unnecessary space. Instead use "References Available Upon Request". You will be asked for their details at the appropriate time during the recruitment process.
3. Photographs.

Career Advice Experts: Interview Tips, How to Get a Job & Network

Karen Adamedes
Karen Adamedes of Career Chick Chat
and Career Tips to Go

Karen Adamedes is the founder of Career Tips To Go and has built a career as a successful business executive. Karen's experience has been gained in sales, marketing, operations and senior management roles; managing national teams and multi-million dollar budgets. She is an accomplished senior executive with a proven track record of success driving business transformation, the delivery of business results and the development of high performance teams. Her blog, Career Tips To Go, provides practical career advice you can use. It is designed to help people work effectively to achieve the rewards they deserve and the results they desire. The ability to develop and manage a career puts you in control and provides the opportunity to make choices. Choices about where you work, how you work and the kind of work you do. And to live the career that you dream of, aspire to or simply enjoy.

"The more confident you are about what you are going to talk about the calmer you will be."

1 What is your number 1 tip for getting a job after finishing study?
Know what you are looking for - the type of company and work you want to do. Work your network. Review who you know through internships, work experience and previous roles and contact them. You don't need to ask them explicitly for a job but let them know what you are looking for and ask if they have any ideas or recommendations for you. Once they know what you are looking for people are usually willing to help. Particularly someone who is being proactive.

2 What's the secret to successfully negotiating a starting salary?
Knowing as much information as you can collect. From what they pay other people to what the rate is for the same role in the industry. Negotiating your starting salary is crucial as how you manage this negotiation has an impact on how you are viewed. Do it well and you will be respected. It's important to go in at the right salary as annual increases and even salaries in other companies with be pegged to your last salary.

3 How do you recommend dealing with interview nerves?
Be prepared. The more confident you are about what you are going to talk about the calmer you will be. Deep breaths beforehand and take your time to think about your response to a question (just not too long!).

4 What's the one thing you wish you knew about applying for jobs when you first finished your qualification?
The importance of following up my network.

5 What do you see as the main advantages that vocational training graduates have over university graduates?
They are different. When you graduate from a vocational institute you normally have skills specific for the career you want to pursue.

6 What advice would you offer on networking using LinkedIn?
Connect with people you know rather than random contacts that you have never met. Always send a personalised note to the person you are connecting with referencing how you know them or your last contact with them.

7 What are the top 3 things you should avoid putting on your resume?
Your Age. Your hobbies. Too much detail.

Please note, the views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the original authors and other contributors.
These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Open Colleges.