How to Network
Networking is one of the most powerful career-building tools.
Building your network is about establishing connections with people, typically in a field or an organisation you want to be a part of. These connections could be UC alumni and graduates, industry leaders, professors, friends and whānau. Building your network early sets you ahead for future opportunities.
Here are 5 simple steps to networking at uni:
- Learn how to introduce yourself best using a Professional Pitch
- Get involved on campus How to make the most of Careers Fairs & Events (PDF 373KB)
- Refine your online presence: How to use LinkedIn for Networking & Top tips for sensible social networking (PDF 698KB)
- Be open to new connections: Top 10 Tips on approaching recruitment companies (PDF 521KB)
- Maintain your networks: The DO’s and DON’Ts of networking
- Business and Arts Career Fair 2022 Online | Wednesday 2 March & Thursday 3 March
- Law Recruitment Evening 2022 Online | Wednesday 2 March 2022 & Thursday 3 March
- STEM Career Fair | Thursday 12 May 2022 |
- Volunteering Expo | Wednesday 3 August 2022
The UC Careers team host over 100+ employers on campus for recruitment presentations, info evenings, coffee chats, competitions and more (in-person and online). Join events for the opportunity to grow your network, meet new contacts and learn strategies to get the job you want right on campus. Keep an eye out on the Careers Events page
Networking in Ōtautahi Christchurch
Want to build stronger connections in the region? Ōtautahi Christchurch has a vast array of business meetups to help students and professionals get connected. Check out the latest events around the city:
Informational interviews are a great way to paint a picture of an occupation, company and the industry. They are also an excellent opportunity to expand your network and practise your interview technique.
Unlike a job interview, it's up to you to ask the questions at an informational interview, so be prepared. This is your opportunity to speak candidly with a professional and gain an insight into their work life. It allows you to get a sense of what a general workday looks like and the typical responsibilities they have in their role. You can also learn more about the company they work for, how it operates, what challenges it faces and what the workplace culture is like. Ultimately, the interview can help you to establish whether the profession or company is a good fit for you and, if so, how you might get to a similar position.
Whether emailing or calling, keep your request short and to the point, explaining what you're looking for and how you think they can help. If they're not interested, don't pursue it. If they're ok to help you, ask whether a phone, video call or email conversation is best and arrange a suitable time.
LinkedIn is a fast-growing professional network. Your LinkedIn profile can evolve as you learn new skills, achieve new accomplishments and enter new phases of your career. You can also use LinkedIn to identify opportunities by networking.
Follow these easy steps and tutorials to help you share your professional story through LinkedIn:
Set up your LinkedIn profile
- Tutorial: take the guided LinkedIn tutorial to set up your profile
- Doc: How to set up a LinkedIn profile (PDF 354KB)
- Read: Developing your LinkedIn profile (265 KB)
- Doc: Creating a great LinkedIn summary
- Doc: LinkedIn Cheat Sheet
Networking on LinkedIn
- Video: How to use LinkedIn to explore opportunities with your degree
- Doc: Quick tips: How to network on LinkedIn
- Video: How to connect on LinkedIn
- Video: Smart social networking
Top tips for LinkedIn networking: Add people you know and the industry leaders that inspire you. It's also worth getting in touch with UC alumni who work in the companies you're interested in to conduct an information interview and learn more about the employer or their career experience. Connect and follow company profiles on LinkedIn to update you with the latest employer insights.
LinkedIn for Job Seekers
- Video: LinkedIn for job seekers
- Slides: LinkedIn for Job Seekers
- Video: How do employers use LinkedIn
- Video: Optimising your profile for recruiters
- Doc: Easy Apply on LinkedIn
Boost your LinkedIn Profile
There's power in your personal networks. Ask your friends, whānau, lecturers, neighbours and former colleagues for introductions and referrals. If you are going to ask your personal networks for a favour, be specific about what you are looking for to enable them to help you more efficiently. The more you help them to understand what it is you need, the more likely it is that you will receive their help.
As well as leveraging off your networks to assist with your job search, you should equally be prepared to return the favour!
Tutorial: How to ask my network for help