Once upon a time I subjected Australian Times readers to a pretty hefty rant about the woes of job hunting in London.
When I moved back home to Australia, I thought that finding my dream Oz job would be a breeze, but I was in for a bit of a shock.
The Australian job market had changed since I left for the UK two years earlier and, in my experience, good jobs are not easy to come by.
This might not be particularly surprising to hear, with unemployment rates high around the globe. But my impression was that Down Under was still faring well compared to other nations.
This fact is certainly true for most industries, but compared to Australia’s buoyant past, which young expats have come to expect, job-hunting had become a lot tougher.
To be honest, moving home just a month before Christmas definitely didn’t make the search any easier.
Being a journalist, my chances of getting work in the media industry were even slimmer thanks to the ever shrinking fortunes and opportunities at both News Limited and Fairfax.
The responses from potential employers and recruitment agencies were like a broken record. A depressing Joni Mitchell record playing loudly… on repeat.
“I’m really sorry but there’s nothing available at this time of year”.
“You won’t be able to find anything before the New Year”.
“We’ll keep you on the books for when the market picks up again in February”.
February?! I could’t be unemployed for that long! I had spent the past two years travelling and living on a shoestring. My savings were small, and that’s an overstatement. Having no income for three months was simply not an option.
So in the face of what was shaping up to be a very poor summer, I did what any true blue Aussie would do. I pulled my Bonds socks up and broke that whining Joni Mitchell record into a million little pieces.
I got serious about my job hunting and fortunately, the hard work paid off. Within three weeks of touching down on Australian soil I had two job offers.
So while recruitment agencies and many others have since said I was very lucky, this is proof that it’s not impossible.
While a big part of job-hunting is about being in the right place at the right time, good support and being able to stay positive are also essential to finding your feet quickly again on home soil.
The grit and determination you gain as a wandering Aussie overseas certainly comes in good stead when you move back down under.