Exploring careers

You need to research the various careers that interest you in order to assess their suitability and understand their different entry routes.

Different careers require different attributes and in many cases particular qualifications and specialised knowledge. As you explore different careers you should consider if:

  • you can move directly into the area of work or do you need some experience or a further qualification?
  • it would help to spend some time in voluntary work or in a temporary job in order to get a foot in the door?

The first ideas you come up with may be fairly tentative so explore other similar occupations to see if alternatives are more attractive or realistic.


Graduate case studies

Read the case studies of our graduates and find out what they are doing now. You may be surprised by some of their career paths.


Our Information Resources database lists the occupational material held in the Careers Service and provides links to the websites of professional bodies, journals and sources of vacancies. Much of the material listed is available to take away or to loan for up to one week.

Explore types of jobs

This section of Prospects provides a direct route into an occupational database which includes job descriptions, entry requirements, salaries, career prospects and sources of employers and vacancies.

Careers Service mentoring

This is your chance to network and tap into the experience of someone doing the type of work you're interested in - maybe a Sheffield graduate.

National Careers Service

This holds a wider careers information database including graduate and non-graduate jobs.

Research the employer thoroughly

Once you have established an interest in a particular career, you need to research the organisations operating in the area. This means finding out about what they do, the service or product that they provide, how they may develop and who their competitors are (if any).

Company and business information

Search for business data via the University of Sheffield Library. It provides access to market research reports, business research, journals and newspapers.

Making a decision

Bear in mind that at this stage you are not seeking the perfect match, but rather choices which are, as far as you can tell going to meet your broad objectives. Your decision is probably not for life. Though some decisions can have long-term consequences, others enable you to keep your options open until you feel more certain.