Struggling to find a job after uni?

Struggling to find a job after uni is a common thing among graduates. In 2014, TotalJobs found that six months after graduating, 40% of graduates were still looking for a job. While there is no more current research, if you speak to any recent graduates they can tell you how difficult they found it. Or even that they still don’t have a job after graduating from university the previous year.

Getting a job after graduation is really difficult and can be disheartening to anyone, let alone someone that’s been told that getting a degree will boost their career prospects.

It’s so important that you don’t get affected by the job hunt, as it is totally normal for it to take time. But sometimes sitting at your desk (or in your bed, no one’s judging) seven days a week just applying for jobs isn’t the best thing for you.

To avoid getting cabin fever and going insane from submitting applications, here are some ideas of how you can spend your time when you’re struggling to find a job after uni.

Volunteer and boost your skills

If you’ve got even four or five hours spare within a week, volunteering can be a great option to use your time positively. Not only can it provide you with the opportunity to meet new people and gain new skills, volunteering can also increase your self-confidence and happiness.

Feeling like you’re giving back can do wonders for your self esteem, especially during a time when you feel like you’re not moving forward.

There are so many opportunities for volunteering, from working in a charity shop to helping out at a cafe, and so much more. Head to this website to find volunteering opportunities near you.

Online courses suited to graduate roles

One thing that we can miss between university and landing a first job is the chance to learn new things. While job rejections can teach us patience and resilience, there’s nothing quite like learning a new skill or qualification.

If you find a course within the industry you’re trying to get into, this could help boost your prospects too for landing that dream graduate job.

Have a look at online course website such as LinkedIn Learning or Udemy.

Take up a hobby or sport in your spare time

When weeks and months start passing you by while you’re looking for work, it starts to feel like you don’t do much anymore. This is the perfect chance to start a new hobby or sport, so if you’re feeling frustrated about your situation you can do something that you enjoy to take your mind off it.

struggling to find a job after uni? Picture shows a Japanese painting, candle, clock and books to help with your career
You could also read some books about careers and mindset to stay motivated

Make it your full-time job to look for a job

Now this is arguably the most important thing to do when you’re looking for a job, but I left it until last as most people know this already.

It’s really good to get into a routine with your job hunting, not only for applying to jobs but making sure you’re choosing the right industry too. It’s important to recognise that if you’re not finding anything after months, you should re-evaluate your approach and check that your desired industry is right for you and your experience.

Try to get out and look for jobs too, visit different cafes and freelance office spaces to mix up your routine!


It can be difficult to continue to look for jobs when you’re receiving rejections, or not even hearing back at all. You just have to trust the process and know that you will find a job!

What other ways have you kept going with your job hunt? Leave a comment below to help other graduates!

If you’ve not got much experience, check out how to get experience without a job.

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This Post Has 23 Comments

  1. This is really useful advice! especially since I’m nearing graduation. I like to keep busy and productive so I think keeping up a momentum of hobbies and perhaps some volunteering will be really important in keeping the spirits up.

    1. Maddie

      I’m glad you found it useful! I hope you can use these tips once you start your job hunt after graduation 🙂

  2. Very good tips, thank you so much for sharing! For me, it was very helpful to ask for a job at the company where I did my internship! Also, I looked for places where graduates before me from my study came to work and used my network through LinkedIn.

    1. Maddie

      These are really great ideas – thank you for sharing your experiences! 🙂

  3. These are wonderfully productive ideas! Volunteer work may even lead to a paid job offer!

    1. Maddie

      Thank you! That’s very true!

  4. Izzie

    These are great ideas! I so needed to read this when I first left uni. Really helpful for anyone who’s just graduated!

    1. Maddie

      It’s a shame the help isn’t there right after graduating! Thank you 🙂

    1. Maddie

      Thank you!

  5. Lisa Alioto

    Love the “make it your full time job looking for a job” – so many neglect to do that! Looking for a job is hard work!

    1. Maddie

      It really is hard work! It’s important to not treat it as a casual thing!

  6. Laura

    I recently quit my job so I am on the job hunt. These are really good tips! I use FutureLearn for online courses and I’m looking into doing some volunteering to keep myself busy!

    1. Maddie

      I hope these can help you with your job hunt! Good luck with the volunteering 🙂

  7. Bri

    I love this simply because everyone gets so antsy post-grad and feel like they NEED to be employed the day after graduation, but truthfully it does take time.

    1. Maddie

      Exactly! Thank you for the comment 🙂

  8. Jaya Avendel

    Remembering not to give up is key to success. I firmly believe there is the perfect job waiting for us if only we persevere and find it. Volunteer work is a wonderful way to build up that invaluable aid: experience!

    1. Maddie

      I believe that too! Thank you for your comment 🙂

  9. Nancy

    I had friends who had a harder time with finding a job after college. It is heartbreaking, but at least there are options. Doing something where you can still put some form of experience on your resume during the gap still works! Thanks for sharing!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

    1. Maddie

      It’s so important to realise that you will find something eventually! Thanks for the comment 🙂

  10. Nicole

    Great tips! I especially like the volunteering one.

    1. Maddie

      Thank you very much!

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