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The University of Southampton
Careers and Employability ServiceStudents

Getting a Job

Adviser helping student with application

During your time at the University of Southampton you will need to start preparing to enter the world of work, whether that means returning to your home country, travelling further or staying in the UK. The information below will point you to support regarding visas, selling the skills you have developed at university and creating job applications that will highlight your skills to an employer wherever they are in the world.

The skills you have developed as an international student, including any languages you have enhanced, will be attractive to many employers. However you need to make sure you are fully aware of any restrictions on your right to work.

National Insurance number

You will need a National Insurance number as it is linked to the tax system and can apply if you can prove you have the right to work in the UK and are either working or seeking work. You can apply through the UK Government website.

Sponsorship & Visas

You will need to make sure you have the correct visa for work within the UK:

  • General student visa (Tier 4): This is the UK visa for students in the UK, the sponsor is your education institution. Please check the UK government website, access advice from the University of Southampton visa site or visit their Drop-in service for further information.
  • Tier 2: This is main visa for skilled workers remaining in the UK. If you are applying then your employer must have a Tier 2 sponsor license.
  • Tier 5: The Youth Mobility Scheme for those 18-30 who want to live and work in the UK for up to 2 years. Check the UK government website for the specific requirements attached to this visa.

For further information regarding visas see the UKCISA website

 

Applying for a job

Use our Making Successful Applications pages to help with applying for a job within the UK. You can also find further information to help you with your job search on TARGETjobs.

If you are unsure whether your qualifications from outside the UK will meet the requirements of the job you are applying for, then UK NARIC is a chargeable service that can translate your qualifications for the UK job market.

Graduate Entreprenuer Visa

This opportunity is only open to international graduates and students of the University of Southampton. This 12 month visa would enable graduates with a viable and innovative business idea to develop their business with support. Find out more information from our Student Enterprise pages.

By studying in the UK you have developed many benefits that will set you apart in the job market in your home country such as: an understanding of British culture; improved English language skills; independence and resilience from living away from home; as well as problem solving and analytical skills from studying for your degree.

There are a range of sites you can use to find international opportunities including: Goinglobal which can be accessed through MyCareer, Grad link, and international graduate opportunities on TARGETjobs.

You may also find our Working Abroad page of use which has information on summer jobs, internships and graduate jobs as well as links to country specific information.

You should also be aware of the concept of Reverse Cultural Shock and how to avoid the pitfalls.

UK opportunities

For any application the key is to research the company and the role so that the application you make is as specific as possible. Both Prospects and TARGETjobs are helpful websites for conducting such research. Our workshops on tailoring your CVs and covering letters will help you to put the research you have conducted into practice.

Employability workshop

Need help with job applications?

Our Employability Essentials workshops may be useful in assisting you with your CVs, applications and interviews for the UK job market.

Book on to a workshop

International opportunities

GoinGlobal logo
Use GoinGlobal to find out how to apply internationally

It is wise to check on the conventions of the particular country you are applying to through GoinGlobal, which can be accessed through our MyCareer pages. This site has country-specific advice including job markets, CVs and interviews for a wide range of nations. This advice comes from local employment experts and we would strongly recommend accessing their service if you are applying internationally as the requirements do vary from country to country.

Below are two examples of countries where CV conventions are different from that of the UK:

  • In China you are required to include more personal details such as your date of birth, gender, marital status and hobbies. Career objectives and photographs are also commonplace. Your education section should be emphasized, including copies of relevant diplomas and certificates. Usually a 1 page CV is required but a maximum of 2 pages may also be accepted.
  • In France a CV is generally 1 page (a maximum of 2 pages for very experienced candidates) and this should show a fairly linear career path, focusing on fewer, most relevant examples. There is also much more focus on gaining employment through personal contacts and referrals so networking is very important.

You can also find information on international opportunities on our Working Abroad page.

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