How do I look for a job in construction when there are no job offers?
“I am currently looking for a job as an assistant designer. I have been browsing all portals for a year, and one thing that puzzles me is the lack of offers in this profession or very high requirements for the position of a licensed designer. What does it mean for the future and professional development?
How to cope at the beginning of your career?
When there are no job offers on the market? ”
M. wrote after a few months:
“… I wrote to you with regret that I could not find a job. Now I want to boast that I have been working for a long time, currently on an internship, but then I have a guaranteed contract. ”
What was the labor market like in 2008-2014 and what was it like in 2015-2016?
Although I found a job right after graduation, I still observe the labor market. I wanted to share some insights. The months with the most job offers related to our industry are January, March, June, and September. In the remaining months, there are job offers, but in the months that I mentioned, there were more of them. The years 2008-2014 were good.
The problem appeared in 2015 and is still today. For the past two years or so, there have been very few job offers for graduates. I don’t know what it is conditioned. Companies are looking for employees, but with experience. An engineer does not need to be licensed but should have experience. I get many e-mails in which you write that you have been looking for a job for half a year, a year or more.
It doesn’t matter which university you graduated from Polytechnic or University. Everyone has a problem finding a job. Our industry is not easy, and nobody gives away money for free. I will not charm you that this is a perfect industry and it is easy to earn money.
How do I look for a job in construction when there are no job offers? I will try to answer that question today.
YOU WANT TO FIND A JOB, YOU MUST WANT TO FIND IT
In every industry (not only ours – Construction, Environmental Engineering, etc.) there is a stereotype that there is no job after graduation, except after acquaintances or with experience?
Is it really possible to find a job only after acquaintances or with experience? ABSOLUTELY NOT!
Experience and friendships are important and I admit that they often help, but are not the key to finding a job.
You can read the article to the end, but now I will write how to find a job when there are no job offers.
Most people are either unwilling or being too fussy.
If you want something very much, you can really try to do it and do a lot of things for this (to achieve this goal).
“You want to find a job, do whatever you can to find it”
How did I prepare for the interview for my first job?
It was June 2008, I had a defense in a month. I learned about the job offer from Mariusz, a friend from university who had already worked in this design office. The company was opening a new plumbing department in Poznań and was looking for designer assistants. I don’t know to what extent I owe Mariusz’s work and I probably won’t find out, but I know that Mariusz must have whispered a good word about me. I talked about the salary at the very end, I only wanted to find a job and get a job. I had no financial expectations. I defended my master’s degree in July 2008, I started work on August 1, 2008. I didn’t have a vacation, but I had a job.
I went to my first job interview a little stressed. It was my second or third interview. I tried to be confident and calm, but stress and nerves prevailed. Nevertheless, I showed my best side and I think I got approval from the manager of the project team.
Several elements helped me find my first job:
- information from a friend – if not Mariusz, I wouldn’t even know about a vacancy,
- Mariusz’s recommendation – Mariusz must have said that I’m cool :),
- my CV – simple, legible, in my opinion, nice prepared,
- my master’s thesis – for the second interview I brought my master’s thesis for inspection by the designer; I really did my best to write my master’s thesis and it was something to be proud of,
- my person (my approach to the conversation, character, etc.).
How did I prepare for the interview for my second job?
Who of you prepared 5 days for the interview? I suspect no one, maybe one or more people. Exactly, and I wanted a second job, working at Instalcompact. Install compact is a company close to Poznań dealing with pump and pumping station engineering.
For 5 days I read every sentence on the website in Polish and English.
For 5 days I downloaded all information materials, pumping station catalogs, and selection guides available on the website hydrophore and fire pumping stations.
For 5 days I read these guides.
They required knowledge of English on the position, so I learned the basic vocabulary of fire protection from the English-speaking Instalcompact side.
I went to the interview prepared and confident.
I got the job.
I didn’t care about finding just any job, I had 3 years of experience as an assistant designer of sanitary installations and I knew that I would find a job sooner or later. I wanted to get a job at Instalcompact because this company offered me experience in a very niche fire protection industry (pumps, pumping stations, fire tanks, sprinkler installations, sprinkler installations, etc.). Believe me or not, you will not learn to design such installations yourself. For this, you need projects, construction sites, and several years of work in the fire protection industry.
Am I glad to work for this company? Very much. During this time, I met many excellent experts in the field of pumps and pumping stations as well as fire protection installations I met Krzysztof M. Honestly, I have only met three designers in my life who do what they do with such commitment and passion and share their knowledge with equal pleasure.
Looking at what my professional career looked like in the first 5 years after graduation, I must say that I was lucky with people who were willing to share their knowledge and experience. This is invaluable and rare in many companies.
Prepare a good CV.
I will not write about writing a CV. There are many guides on the Internet. I will write about a few key things:
– do not send your CV in * .doc format. World program. It looks hopeless and not very professional.
– so much is said about writing a good CV, simple and transparent. A CV doesn’t have to look cosmic. He regularly gets CVs and almost half of them drop out when opened. How can someone be a good engineer, develop a project exactly when they cannot present themselves? You have a lot of time to prepare your CV. Try your best.
In my opinion, in our industry, a CV should be simple and legible, without unnecessary frills.
– if you are looking for a job as an assistant designer or construction engineer, you do not need to list all odd jobs in your CV during your studies; write only about what is related to your future work.
– check typos and vocabulary.
– if you have any special achievements in life, write about them (In the fifth grade of technical school I took first place in the Tournament of Young Technicians in the field of didactic work at the provincial level and I received an award at the national level. I proudly wrote about it in my CV)
Print your CV and take it in person.
You can send your CV by post, email, or take it in person. I recommend the last option.
The lack of job offers does not mean that the company will not want to hire anyone. I know many cases when a company decided to hire someone only after it got a job application. So get off your butt, print your CV, and drive around town a bit. Nothing will do itself. I am an advocate of personal contacts.
Clean up your social profiles (Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Golden Line).
Social profiles are long overdue, not only for communication and entertainment but for tracking and checking potential job candidates. Your profiles are your CV, they are your business card – show your best side. Every second photo with beer can spoil your image.
Follow social profiles.
It is worth following social media because job advertisements appear more and more often (and only there). Post on your board that you are looking for a job.
Never assume in advance that something is not worth doing. This is one of the most common mistakes. You never know what will happen to you in life and how you will get a job.
Inform your friends – ALL of them.
It is worth informing your friends that we are looking for a job – publicly or privately. We can get information about the job from the least expected person.
Keep learning. Read a lot!
Read standards, regulations, laws, books, blogs, portals, browse projects on the Internet, etc. Participate in fairs in the installation industry. Read and learn.
Popular magazines from the sanitary industry
Get your experience yourself.
If you are looking for a job in designing water supply and sewage networks, browse through construction and working designs of sanitary networks. There are tons of free projects on the Internet. Municipalities and water companies attach links to the projects to each tender.
Just enter the following words in a Google search engine: construction project of a water supply system, construction project of a sanitary sewage system, or detailed design.
1 in 10 projects is really meticulously developed and can be a good source of information for the graduate.
Check what were the arrangements made, how long it took to agree (when was the application submitted and when the project office obtained the decision) > It is the knowledge that will be useful both during work and during an interview.
On the construction site…
They are sure to build new water supply and sewage systems near your place of residence, build various buildings, etc. Do not pass by the construction site indifferently, take some photos, find out what is being built, in what technology, what the project looked like (if it is an investment public, the project can be downloaded from the website of Zakład Wodociągów or the Commune Office).
Raise your qualifications yourself.
The fact that you have no work experience does not mean that you cannot raise your qualifications and increase your chances.
A graduate’s CV with dozens of completed courses and training looks like heaven better than the CV of a graduate who has not participated in such courses.
How much do such courses and training cost?
Many manufacturers offer free training! You can take training in the design of sanitary installations in Sankom software (Auditor OZC, CO, H2O), Auto CAD, Intersoft programs, and many other manufacturers such as Danfoss, Bartosz, Hawle, and many others.
Let me show this with an example:
CV No. 1
Education: University of Life Sciences in Poznań,
Skills: AutoCAD, MS Office service
CV No. 2
Education: University of Life Sciences in Poznań,
Skills: AutoCAD, MS Office, Auditor OZC, CO, H2O.
– Certificate of INTERsoft from Workshops for Designers in BIM and ArCADia-TERMO software,
– Industry training of DANFOSS “Automatic balancing of installations, DANFOSS compact nodes, use of medium power heat pumps”,
– Certificate completed training in Hilti fire protection,
– Certificate of training “Mechanical ventilation with heat recovery and Aqua Revital filters” at BARTOSZ,
– Autodesk Certificate of AutoCAD skills.
P.S. Greetings to Asia from Krakow who had a very good CV 🙂
If you were the employer, which graduate would you choose? Because I am CV 2.
Go to the interview and say what you can give, not what you want!
Most graduates only demand, have specific expectations. Generation Z, i.e., those born after 1995, have only expectations and demands, believe that it is a great honor for the employer that they can hire him. The employer looks at it from a different angle.
Who has never run his own business, does not know how difficult it is to earn money, how difficult it is to obtain orders and new contacts, how much does it cost to maintain an assistant designer, how much is good computer hardware, how much software is the design and much more?
Don’t say what you want, just say how much you can give!
Present your value, don’t talk about salary, just show your employer what they will gain by employing you.
DON’T BURN BRIDGES BEHIND YOU
Separate culturally from would-be or current employers.
Always inform your employer that you will not come for an interview.
Respect others’ time. What I do not like most is when the appointed person does not come for an interview and I do not even write or call. People, are you crazy. After all, someone in the company is waiting for you, someone has planned a day to interview you…. And it’s not enough that you don’t come, you don’t even call.
DON’T COMPLAIN ON A JOB WHERE YOU ARE NOT WORKING YET
There is a certain type of alumni who are a loser for me.
Either they have a bad CV that ends up in the basket right away, or they complain before hiring. I don’t like it… You are working on different software…
Don’t complain about a job where you are not yet working. At least try to pretend that you care about this job, it is your dream job (… and after a month you can always quit).
I don’t like people who come out of the claimed mode during the first interview.
Apply job diversification.
Where can you work after Environmental Engineering?
– in project offices,
– in research institutes,
– in enterprises dealing with atmosphere protection, water supply, sewage disposal (Aquanet, etc.),
– in enterprises dealing with economic waste,
– in local and state administration offices (e.g., regional water management board, commune offices),
– in pipe manufacturing companies (Wavin, PipeLife, Kaczmarek),
– in companies producing fittings (Hawle, AVK),
– in companies producing sewage equipment (EcolUnicon),
– in companies producing ventilation units and fittings (VBW, VTS),
– in companies producing pumping stations (Instalcompact, HydroPartner),
– in contractors (Budimex, Skanska, TKT).
You don’t have to work as an assistant designer or construction engineer right away. There are many other interesting professions and even better paying than the two mentioned. He can become a technical and commercial advisor, technical support engineer, specialist, coordinator, project manager, etc.
The most important thing is to find a job in the industry, no matter where. The most important thing is to get somewhere and work in the industry.
The worst possible option is to get a job outside the industry. People have a hard time changing jobs, people quickly get used to their current job, people have loans, people are afraid of changes. And time flies inexorably.
Even if you work on the borderline of the industry, don’t worry, because you have to start somewhere.
The most important thing is to have the balls and the courage to change your current job. It is fear that kills our dreams, fear of change, fear of the unknown. We think: “Maybe it will be worse, and maybe we will hit the gutter from the rain.”
If you do not change your job, you will not know how it will be.
And if you hit the gutter from the rain, look for a job. It couldn’t get any worse.
Think about starting your own business.
You can start your own company for two purposes:
– to work for yourself,
– to work for someone else.
You don’t have to start your own business right away, but you can write in your CV that you can start your own business and work for someone under your own name. Currently, many companies have problems with acquiring new projects, so they are reluctant to hire new people on a contract of employment.
Offer the employer that you will start your own company and provide design services for him.
If you have been unsuccessfully looking for a job for six months or a year, this form of encouraging an employer may prove very effective.
Become a freelancer.
If you can’t find a job, you can become a freelancer and do projects yourself. It is difficult without experience, permission, and knowledge, but possible.
What is the plus of such a solution? A simple advertisement is enough and after some time the first customer will call us.
Choose the industry in which you would like to operate, e.g., plumbing or sanitary installation projects, and start looking for potential customers. Finding a designer with permissions who will check the design for us and conquer it is no problem. As I wrote earlier, you just want to. Get creative.
If you are already going to the interview, go there with your life.
It may seem difficult since we’ve been looking for a job for a year, we’ve been in twenty interviews, everyone said they’d call and no one called.
Take a piece of your life for the interview, relax before the interview.
Listen to the interview and respond with life, show that you care. Show that you are suitable for the position.
Remember body language.
Remember body language. Non-verbal communication is our body language and external appearance. Many experts believe that non-verbal communication and body language account for more than 50 percent. A message that he communicates to the other person.
Sometimes a first look, our behavior, can decide whether we’ll get a job.
Make eye contact. When your employer talks to you, look him in the eye.
Don’t break down.
You cannot find a job these days. It is simply not possible. If you are looking for a job in the industry for over a year, i.e., that you are doing something wrong or something is wrong with you.
Improve your CV, change your appearance, stop slouching, stop complaining, start actively looking for a job.
Do yourself a list of things you have already done that you could still do. You certainly didn’t go out of your way to get a job.
Consider moving to a big city.
One possible option is to move to a big city. There is nothing strange about this. There are more design, construction, and public administration companies in the city. Many of my friends left Poznań after graduation and now work in Wrocław, Gdańsk, or Warsaw.
And I’m not talking only about unmarried women and single men, but whole families.
The largest companies in Poland have their headquarters in Warsaw. There are many companies in Poznań, Gdańsk, Wrocław, and Kraków.
If you don’t start working, you won’t find a job.