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after graduation
12 Jan, 2021

Is a job your only option after graduation?

So, you’ve come to another fork in the road – you’ve graduated with a degree, but what next?

Entering the workforce is the natural next step for many graduates. But what should you do if things didn’t quite work out the way you planned after graduation? Perhaps you’re not ready to go straight into a job, are feeling a little confused, or simply haven’t found the right position yet?

In fact, there are quite a few doors open to you! It all depends on your future goals.

Here are just four options to explore:

1. Apply for a Professional Year Program

A Professional Year Program is a government-endorsed pathway from tertiary education to employment.

It’s a one-year program that is available to international graduates in Australia, primarily coming from information and communication technology (ICT) fields.


>  Boost your employability through valuable work experience at an Australian company

>  Improve your knowledge and understanding of your chosen profession

> Gain further exposure to the Australian workforce culture

> Build upon your professional communication skills

>  Potentially gain additional points towards your permanent residency application. For more information please visit

At Kaplan Business School (KBS), graduates from a Master of Business Analytics (Extension) are eligible to apply. It’s a great professional development opportunity for our students to gain further insight and experience before committing to a specific role.

There are a number of providers and locations where you can apply for a Professional Year Program, which you can view here.

2. Consider postgraduate study

There are a number of compelling reasons why you may want to progress straight to postgraduate study after completing an undergraduate degree.


>  To gain specialisation and further knowledge in a particular field or area of interest

>  It may be a more natural progression to complete your study while you’re still in the studying mindset and familiar with the tertiary education system in Australia

>  To increase employability by completing a master’s level of education

>  Potential to access higher salaries. According to the 2019 Graduate Outcomes Survey* (national online survey among 109 higher education institutions) the median salary of undergraduates employed full-time in 2019 was $62,600, while for postgraduate coursework graduates it was $85,300

Did you know? All KBS graduates who successfully complete a bachelor or master’s degree are eligible to apply for a 30% discount on course fees via our Alumni Scholarship Program, making postgraduate study a lot more affordable! You can view more about postgraduate business degree options here.

3. Build on essential skills

Another valuable option for new graduates is to dedicate some time to further professional development. You might choose to apply for an English language course or secure an internship in your field of interest.

Whether it’s undertaken during your studies or as a graduate, it’s never too late. An internship is a very valuable addition to your CV, particularly when you have clear objectives in mind.  

It’s a great opportunity to learn technical and ‘soft’ skills, gain insights into your industry and grow your confidence.

Think of it as a long-term strategy; getting your foot in the door so to speak. You’ll have the chance to network and make connections that might lead to a more permanent position. Consider this – 1 in 3 students were offered ongoing employment with their host employer. **

It’s important to be strategic about how you find and select an internship – you need to make sure it aligns with your future goals and objectives.

For example, ask yourself: at this stage is it more beneficial for you to intern at a small company for hands-on experience, or at a larger company that may expose you to greater networking and industry connections?

Alumni network

If you’re looking to build up your professional development, it’s very much worth staying active within the alumni network of your school/uni you graduate from.

For example, as a KBS alumni you would benefit from:

  • Free Careers Central service for life including careers consultations, resume checks and interview practice even after you graduate
  • Unlimited access to all online classes within your course Regular alumni workshops, for example in Excel and Xero, which gives industry recognised certification
  • Recruitment services where our careers team regularly post full-time paid jobs as well as internships on our KBS Alumni Community LinkedIn page
  • Vodcasts/seminars as well as networking opportunities with 5,600+ alumni, KBS staff and lecturers, and industry guests

4. Find a graduate program

For those looking to make a start on their career you might consider applying for a graduate program with a larger company. This is an option mainly available to Australian residents and permanent citizens.

While similar in some ways to a normal graduate working position, the main difference is the amount of ongoing support, mentorship and training you’ll receive.


>  Experience multiple roles across a company on a rotation basis

>  Access professional development and networking opportunities Industry-specific training

>  Comprehensive induction

>  Extensive mentoring

This can be a great step for a new graduate if you’re feeling hesitant about your job-readiness. It’s also the perfect way to learn more about your interests and where your skillset lies, before committing to a more permanent position.

Want to learn more about your options after graduation? You can contact our friendly Careers Central team directly at or enquire at

*QILT 2018 Student Experience Survey National Report. Published April 2019

**Based on students placed in academic internships during Trimester 1, 2021.