How to Start Using Your Diploma Qualification Straight Away

use your qualification straight away with great career progression opportunities

Choosing to undertake further education is a key life decision – one that will impact the course of your career path. If you’re keen to get a head start on your career, there are many things that you can do before you’ve even finished studying that will help your diploma work for you and showcase your knowledge and skills.

Start networking to jump start your career

Get active on LinkedIn

Whether you’re still studying or just graduated, add your qualification to your LinkedIn profile. This is also a great opportunity to set up the rest of your LinkedIn profile:

  • Ensure your profile photo is professional and of good quality
  • Customise your profile URL to remove random letters and numbers
  • Add other qualifications, job roles, volunteer work or other experience
  • List the specific skills you’ve learned throughout your course
  • Ask colleagues, mentors or coaches to write you a LinkedIn recommendation
  • Write a one-paragraph summary, detailing your unique skill set and expertise
  • Join networking or professional groups on LinkedIn – you can find ones relevant to your location, industry or expertise
  • Post an update when you’ve finished your course letting people know what you’ve achieved (make sure you tag @CollegeForAdultLearning)

These actions will make your professional profile visible to potential employers and recruiters and highlight what you can bring to the company. A detailed profile can act as a checklist for all the attributes employers are looking for.

Join social networking groups

Utilising the benefits of platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn are a great way to share your skills and qualifications. But don’t forget the value of in-person networking groups.

Joining groups of people with similar qualifications are likely to draw in employers who are looking for candidates with specific skills. Being an active part of these groups also helps you to extend your network of professional contacts. You can find mentors, share knowledge and stay on top of industry trends. They also provide an opportunity for you to demonstrate your qualifications, be known as an ambitious person, and get quality job offers.

Connect and network with fellow students

One of the many benefits of studying a diploma is that you can complete it part-time while you look for work in your desired industry. Your student peers may be able to help you with a lead when it comes to getting your foot in the door of your desired workplace. Connecting and networking with people who are studying the same course as you may open a variety of doors that may not have been previously open to you.

Join professional association memberships

Many professional associations have membership options for students. Being part of an organisation like this can help with credibility within the industry, as employers will be able to see that you are a member of a reputable organisation. These groups are a great way of staying up to date on current and necessary skills within your chosen industry. Organisations like these give you exciting opportunities to take part in blogs, forums, and social media. These serve as two-way conversations between experienced professionals relating to issues of your industry. Additionally, it means you can have your thoughts and opinions heard by like-minded people.

These are some of the things that you can do now to help boost your employability and help move you in the direction that you want to go.

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Apply the skills you are learning while at work

One of the many benefits of studying a diploma is that you learn real-life practical skills that can be immediately applied to your work situation. In this way, what you learn is both relevant and beneficial to advancing your career.

1. Keep a daily journal

At the end of each workday, set aside five or 10 minutes to identify what new skills you were able to develop that day. At the end of the week, allocate time to give yourself a weekly review. Identify what you’ve done well and what you still need to work on improving. Bring an attitude of self-development to this exercise, rather than self-criticism. Creating a regular journal review habit will keeping your on track to continue developing your skills and growing your career.

2. Having regular meetings with your manager or supervisor

By scheduling weekly or monthly meetings with your manager or supervisor, you can demonstrate first-hand how the skills you are learning are being translated into your work and your tasks. Make the meeting an opportunity to receive mentoring in areas where you feel less confident and to guide you in the right direction.

3. Ask for more responsibilities

One of the best ways to apply and demonstrate the new skills your diploma is giving you, is to take on additional responsibilities at work. By showing that you can take on more tasks than you had previously is another excellent way to demonstrate your new abilities

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