Exploring the labour market

What job would suit you?Verken arbeidsmarkt (5)

So many fields, so many companies and who knows how many functions …
But what are the things that will make you feel fine in one job not in another? First of all you need self knowledge and secondly you will need to explore the labour market thoroughly.

Find answers to these questions:

  • Which jobs can you do with your degree and your personal set of skills?
  • Do you know your own preferences?
  • In what kind of organisation would you like to work?
  • What kind of company culture would suit you?
  • Which job package appeals to you?
  • Is there an entrepreneur in you?

Tips to explore the labour market

Explore company cultures

Do you want to know what kind of work environment you function best in? Ask yourself how you function and how you prefer to work.

  • Does a small or a large company appeal to you?
  • Do you prefer the profit or the non profit sector?
  • Do you like to know what the day will bring or do you like unexpected twists?
  • Do you prefer to work in a place where there is a lot of freedom or where there are clear agreements and procedures?

Find information on jobs

Do you know which professions exist and what they entail? When you learn more about various professions you can more easily assess whether they match your own profile.

Discover your qualities as an entrepreneur

Would you rather be your own boss and is there an entrepreneur in you?

Learn from alumni and people you know

Find out what other graduates do and learn from their experiences:

  • The site Study Guide gives a brief description of the labour market for every programme. Select your programme and look up the information on the labour market to get an indication of career options. (You find this at the bottom of the page ‘About the programme’. The information is in English for programmes that are taught in English, in Dutch for programmes that are taught in Dutch.)
  • Many faculties and disciplines collect testimonials from alumni. This can help you to form a more concrete picture of the possibilities on the labour market.
  • A number of faculties and students’ unions organise events where you can meet alumni. An ideal way to start building your professional network.

Ask around. Friends and acquaintances are probably happy to tell you about their jobs. All their stories and information can help you to form a (more) realistic idea on what your future career might look like.

Dare to think out of the box

Be creative and step out of your comfort zone

  • Look for less obvious jobs or sectors. You might find interesting opportunities if you don’t limit your search to occupations with a direct link to your discipline.
  • Demonstrate your 21st century skills: communication, flexibility, problem solving, teamwork, digital skills … Every employer welcomes candidates who have these competencies. Make sure your profile shows these talents.

Get to work

Explore company cultures

  • Find out which company culture suits you with myCareerCompass
  • How do companies present themselves? Read the company profiles (1000+) on the Ghent University Career Center 
  • Check online: what can you learn from a company's website and their social media? You might have to read between the lines to find out about their values, their people management and so on.
  • Ask around: hear what people who work there have to say
  • Be observant during a job interview. How are candidates welcomed for their interview? You might even get an idea of the daily atmosphere in the company by observing the people that work there.

Follow job sites

On most job sites you can create your own profile and receive relevant job offers regularly. This helps you to get an idea of the kind of vacancies that more or less match your profile. Be critical when reading the vacancies and if necessary adjust your search criteria to get better matching vacancies.


Vacancies specifically for UGent students and graduates
Companies use the Ghent University Career Center specifically to target UGent-talent.
Tip: after registration, replace your UGent-mail address by your personal email address (via 'account' in the user menu). This way you still have access to the UGent Career Center after you graduate.

There are quite a lot of other good jobsites. Though generally speaking these are not only aimed at young graduates but at a much wider audience.

Attend career events

Every year the Ghent University Association organises the afstudeerbeurs. This is an ideal occasion to meet employers, to go to career talks and workshops on applying for work or to get feedback on your cv by an HR professional.

    Faculties, programmes and students’ unions organise job fairs and career events throughout the academic year. Stay up to date and register in the UGent Career Center.