It can certainly get frustrating, reading in the news that there are jobs available, yet each time you put yourself and your resume out there, opportunities don’t seem to come through, or the role and timing don’t seem right.
For Ng Mun Keong, his job search journey wasn’t as smooth as he’d like. “The challenge, I guess, is my age,” he shared.
“Most employers I guess want a younger worker,” said the 60-year-old. “And there are a lot of people out there looking for jobs as well.”
But Mun Keong hasn’t given up, despite his job search lasting over six months, and revealed that he’s taken up as many opportunities and grants as possible to improve his chances.
“I went for a specialist diploma at Republic Polytechnic, spending all my SkillsFuture funds, close to a thousand dollars”, Mun Keong said.
Don’t give up, Career GRIT is here
Mun Keong’s never-give-up spirit was what led him to discover Career GRIT, a structured job search guide that supports Singaporeans in navigating career resources through their job search journey.
After signing up for Career GRIT via its web app, he followed up by attending an event held at Tampines in January this year.
It connected jobseekers with prospective employers, and allowed them to interview for roles they were interested in, as well as provided resources such as career coaching to improve their employment chances!
If you haven’t heard, Career GRIT is designed for jobseekers in these job search stages:
- Those who haven’t started their job search process
- Those actively applying for jobs
- Those currently preparing for job interviews
- Those with jobs, but looking to cope better
Speaking at the event, he said: “I found out about today from an email, and my experience was positive.”
“The process does take some time — I arrived at 11am, and my interview was around 12pm.”
“I’ve been using other job sites such as Jobstreet and JobsDB, and I thought options today are pretty good. During my younger days, like when we were hit by the financial crisis, events and online solutions like these (Career GRIT) weren’t available, and it’s good to have them now.”
Expanding your job search options
For Mohamed Fakhri bin Latip, having just started his job search, it was all about waiting for companies to get back on his applications, and maximising his opportunities.
He said: “I’ve been looking for about one to two weeks, and as part of the younger generation that’s more familiar with online job search, I found Career GRIT did help expand my search horizons.”
“I found companies that were hiring that I didn’t know were staffing compared to other job sites, and after joining WSG’s Telegram page, I found out about today’s job fair, which is why I came down!”
Staff at the Career GRIT event went through the app’s functions with Fakhri, showing him the various resources on the app, and the 43-year-old said: “One of the event staff actually approached me to show me the web app, and I found it quite knowledgeable and useful.”
The Career GRIT site (which works on both laptop and mobile devices) has digital job search gurus (advisors) that help jobseekers select their job search stage, and provide advice on relevant career events, seminars and activities specially curated for them.
Those gurus also give access to career tips and advice via the site’s Learning On the Go section.
Finding career guidance
For Zhang Qian, career coaching and advice on both the Career GRIT web app and events are crucial as part of her preparations for job interviews.
The 34-year-old said: “I’m a fan of career coaching, where we can reach out to someone via calling or texting.”
“To be honest, I’m not sure what I want to do, work-wise. Sometimes, it helps to have the right person to get some advice (apart from friends).”
She shared some advice she got, saying: “A coach suggested that I check out MySkillsFuture, to discern my personal interests and skill sets, so that I can be more focused with my job search.”
Zhang Qian is employed in a part-time job, but has been looking for a full-time role that suits her for the long term.
“It’s not been that easy, but it’s been an interesting experience, and I’m quite excited to find a job that fits my personality and individual interests that I’ll be happy at,” she said.
Getting used to virtual job searching
For Noorliyana Misban, using Career GRIT was a no-brainer, given the ongoing situation with Covid-19.
After attending a series of virtual interviews at the Tampines event, Noorliyana shared: “I have to admit I felt lost at first, as I didn’t expect to be doing virtual interviews, but I’m fine with it now.”
“Nowadays with the Covid-19 situation, we have to get used to this, though for some who are used to face-to-face interviews, it’ll take some time. But it’s for the best, I suppose!”
She also found it convenient to be able to try out for multiple positions at the Career GRIT event, adding: “I didn’t just apply for one position — I saw another company that had a similar position with an open booth, so I went for an interview with them too. It’s like killing two birds with one stone!
Career GRIT also helped Noorliyana put some momentum into her job search: “It’s been a roller-coaster ride, with the end-of-year holiday period and all, so things got a bit slow, which is why I came down to give myself an opportunity to speed up my job hunt.”
To learn more about Career GRIT, pop to the site here, and to make it easier for you to be updated for future job events, services and advice, don’t forget to bookmark it on your browser!