GUEST BLOG: Getting into competitive industries

UoY Careers Rocket illy Guest blog written by Debbie Sutcliffe, Senior Children’s Footwear Designer at Wyndsors World of Shoes.

Debbie offers some top tips on how students and graduates can go about getting a career in such a fast pace environment.

What kind of skills do students need to stand out from the crowd?

You need to be persistent, start by sending your examples of your work, CV and Cover Letters to various companies and agencies you are interested in working for, even if they are not advertising vacancies – it’s always good to show your interest.

As most industries are very competitive it’s important to be organised, have great communication skills, motivation, drive and lots of enthusiasm.

You need to be able to listen to feedback from others so that you can develop and learn with a company.

What advice would you give to students aspiring to work in competitive industries?

Don’t be afraid to send your work to companies, it will show that you are proactive and enthusiastic about working for them. Be tenacious and follow up on applications.

Be determined and get as much experience as you can – even if it’s unpaid. Once you get a foot in the door, sometimes that’s all you need!

Going for interviews is great experience, I would advise to go for an interview even if not in your preferred role. It will build your confidence and it’s great to gain feedback.

Work hard and you will achieve your dreams!

What should students include in their application to stand out?

Employers see so many CVs, it really is important to grab the reader’s attention.

The first thing I would recommend is making sure your general structure and layout is clear and easy to read – use bold headings, short descriptions and bullet point key information. Make sure that your content is punchy and to the point. Obviously you are applying for work experience but if you can showcase any other internships or unpaid work this helps set you apart.

Secondly, include a short summary at the top of your CV. This should tell the employer more about your unique qualities and the role that you are looking for. A summary helps an employer get an instant feel for what you’re about and hopefully inspires them to read on.

Lastly, I would say to be persistent. Companies receive so many CVs. Often the applicants that have stood out to me have been the ones who have chased up on their application.

To read the full interview with Debbie and gain more advice and insight you can at