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Finding an IT Job from SA


Paul Ley
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Hi All,

We finally got our PR. Now it is time to find a job.

I have been a Network Administrator / Controller for the past 13 years at one company. Have worked there for 15. My field of experience is rather wide and includes Windows 2003 / 2008, Exchange 2003, Trend NeatSuite, Backup Exec, SQL 2005 (not too extensive), terminal server, Citrix XenServer (Server Virtualization), Citrix XenApp (Got CCA), Citrix XenDesktop 4 & Symantec Backup Exec. On the Windows side it do it all for 3 factories including pcs and terminals, printers, etc.

I have been receiving job alerts from 3 sites such a s seek for the past year, daily. Since I received our PR, I have replied to a large number of those alerts with not much success.

Is it important to have your resume done by a professional resume writer in Australia?

Does the same count for the cover letter?

Is it vital that I have to be in Australia to get a job?

Kind Regards

Paul

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Hi Paul,

I am in IT (Software Development Project Manager) and here is what I experienced while job hunting. I had my C.V written by a professional writer for the Aus market while still in SA. I applied for many, many jobs from SA with no luck. We then came over to Melbourne in Sept 09. I was interviewed for one of the first positions I applied for by both the agent and company and got the Job all in the space of about 5 days.

So I guess in my experience unless you have highly specialised skills companies tend to look at people they can see/meet/interview.

Just my 10c.

Cheers,

Travis

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Your line of work sounds very similar to what I do in the IT field, and I don't mean this in a nasty way whatsoever, because it applies to me as well, but we're not in the most specialized field in IT. There are literally tons of Australians who can offer the same skills we have who are already in Aus, who can go to interviews, and can start in a short period on time, all of which are things you can't offer from where you are now. Make sure you have enough money saved up to survive for a few months, come over and then start job-hunting as hard as you can. In our line it would be almost impossible to find work while still in ZA, I experienced this myself.

The Ozzy CV is very different from the ZA CV, so getting it re-written will help, but what really matters is the cover letter, a generic one-letter-fits-all-positions approach won't be enough, and if the add for the position mentions anything about a selection criteria, MAKE ABSOLUTELY SURE TO ADDRESS THAT SELECTION CRITERIA!!!! This was a big mistake I made for the first however-many positions I applied for; I assumed these were the skills they were looking for, and they would pick up from my CV that I have those skills. NOT SO!!! You HAVE to address every point in the selection criteria on its own in an essay-like statement.

In ZA our CV;s do most of our talking for us, over here it doesn't carry that much weight, the onus is really on you to sell yourself through your cover letter and the selection criteria.

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I have heard this complain from Australian people working abroad as well. Even they couldn't get any jobs lined up from abroad, but once they got "home" they immediately got interviews, so it seems if you are lucky enough to have your PR to just get over there and start looking.

Good luck!

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  • 3 weeks later...
Hi All,

We finally got our PR. Now it is time to find a job.

I have been a Network Administrator / Controller for the past 13 years at one company. Have worked there for 15. My field of experience is rather wide and includes Windows 2003 / 2008, Exchange 2003, Trend NeatSuite, Backup Exec, SQL 2005 (not too extensive), terminal server, Citrix XenServer (Server Virtualization), Citrix XenApp (Got CCA), Citrix XenDesktop 4 & Symantec Backup Exec. On the Windows side it do it all for 3 factories including pcs and terminals, printers, etc.

I have been receiving job alerts from 3 sites such a s seek for the past year, daily. Since I received our PR, I have replied to a large number of those alerts with not much success.

Is it important to have your resume done by a professional resume writer in Australia?

Does the same count for the cover letter?

Is it vital that I have to be in Australia to get a job?

Kind Regards

Paul

HI Paul

To answer your first question, I do think it is viable having your CV done by a resume writer in Australia. The cv's here really carry all the weight. It is very different to SA and the same goes for the cover letters - depending on what is in your cover letter and your cv depends on whether or not they will call you for an interview!

We have been in Melbourne for 1 year now (we lived in Dubai for 1 year before coming to Aus) and my husband had a professional cv done and I really do believe it helped tremendously. It was exceptionally difficult for him to find a job not being here. We came on a "look see" in Feb last year to stamp in and meet with recruitment agents and I seriously advise you being here to find employment! Within our first month he had 3 job offers!!

I have 7 years IT Recruitment experience (not currently working by choice) but I am going to be starting to work as a Resume Writer very shortly and have been chatting to a few agencies over the last few days - I honestly don't believe you are going to battle to find work in Aus as there is definitely a skill shortage. I am currently trying to network with some IT Recruiters - which is looking to be very successful - so please keep me updated and if i can help in any way I most definitely will try!

Good Luck!

Andy

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I looked for a job in Melbourne from South Africa for 6 months and got 1 company interview over Skype. I arrived In Melbourne in Feb and had a job inside 3 weeks. I have over 10 years IT expeerience in development. All the agents told me I'd get a job soon after getting here...guess they were right.

-G

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Pieter is spot on with the cover letter.. VERY important,

I must have have applied to about 50 positions and was lucky enough to find a Job while still in SA, I had to come over to Melbourne for the final interview but by that time I was the only one in the running for the job so they just wanted to see me really.

I got allot more positive responses when I started giving allot of attention to the cover letter.. Your CV tells what you have done / studied/ accomplished in the PAST.. Your cover letter should say how you can apply your studies / experience to this specific job in the FUTURE. Use the job spec and reference projects from your CV where you obtained experience in the same area, to convince the employer that you have experience in the tasks that they will expect of you.

Note, I have not had my CV written by a pro... I did it myself and the following seemed to have attracted allot more positive attention:

I included a picture with the cover letter. (so they can see I am white without saying it)

I took out my address, telephone number, and ONLY included an email address. Many agents will not even read your CV further if they see your current address at the beginning of your CV.

Include your visa status to confirm that you can work in Australia

This will at least get the agent to read your CV, If he is interested he will mail you and now you have a much more personal way to explain your situation and provide all the additional contact information he might need.

All my work references had the work address in SA included, so the idea is not to mislead the agent but to "break the news" a little later down your CV when he has at least read some of it.

:ilikeit:

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Hi guys,

Thank you for all your advice. I really appreciate it. I have been working with a resume writing company in Aus to help me prior to getting some of your posts, so hopefully in the next couple of days the resume and cover letters will be sorted. I will add my picture / photo as mentioned. just hope my mug does not scare them.

I seem to be feeling like someone between a rock and a hard place. i want to apply for each job I see, but also know our house on this side must be sold. on the other hand it will be cheaper to pay for it from aus, i really dont know.

I really understand the whole resign and go to Aus idea, but family here will kill us when we do. They are all very old school about it and need proof for everything. I even scanned and email the visas in our passports to show them we are actually going. Wow, I know all the doors have opened very fast up to now, hopefully the rest will too. We can only hope and pray for guidance.

Thanks alot for your advice, I will keep watching this post.

Kind Regards

Paul

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Hi Paul

I think the most pertinent point about job hunting which I have seen in this and other forums is the current location issue - nearly everyone agrees that it's really difficult to get a break from SA unless you have very particular and specific skills, while it's not nearly as difficult when you are able to sit down with either an agent or a prospective employer in Australia.

I guess I must have applied for nearly 250 unique, matching positions over the last 6 months through different online portals, and I've had about 5 replies in that time. All of those were polite replies to say thank you for trying but you didn't make it and we'll call you if we find something whch matches you - I'm still waiting...

I'm probably applying for posts quite similar to what you're looking at, given your list of skills.

Over the next few weeks / months, if you think having your CV professionally done has made a difference, please let the rest of us get the benefit of your experience with this.

Good luck

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