So I Have a Degree in Communications… What’s Next?
Strong communication skills are essential in every industry, and one of the requirements you’ll most often see listed in job descriptions. This is because knowing how to communicate with your audience is a key factor to success – from selling products to consumers, to strengthening relationships with investors, clients, customers and employees, as well as teaching, developing ideas and in many other aspects of business.
Getting a degree in communications will allow you to package information to connect with diverse audiences effectively, with specific goals in mind. Graduates of communication degrees hold jobs at all levels in their respective companies – and in a wide spectrum of different domains.
To help give you a bit of the lay of the land, here are some jobs that you could potentially land with a communications degree.
Media – Editorial assistant, junior producer, video production assistant
A communications degree aligns very well with types of jobs available in the media. Whether you’re interested in becoming involved with TV and film production or journalism – including, print, broadcast and online/digital media – media careers all require graduates with excellent communication skills, and the ability to curate and disseminate information in engaging and relevant ways.
Relevant work experience is essential, so those interested in entering this line of work should consider undertaking internships or getting involved in student media productions while still studying, to increase their chances of getting a related role upon graduation. Those interested in journalism may also consider building a portfolio of their own journalistic work and/or gaining a relevant postgraduate degree.
Careers in marketing, public relations and advertising – Marketing assistant, junior advertising copywriter, public relations assistant
In these related areas, communications graduates can help deliver effective written and oral communication to colleagues or clients. This could be in the form of press releases, advertising scripts, company presentations and print campaigns, as well as attendance at media events and the ongoing development of professional relationships with clients and the media.
These jobs usually require first-rate writing ability, great organizational skills and a personable demeanor: all skills that a communications degree develops.
Education – Teacher, professor, corporate trainer
Another option is education, where communication skills are certainly needed daily! To be hired to teach in primary or secondary education, you’ll need a teaching qualification. Depending on the country you want to work in, getting a teaching degree will take a year or two of additional, specialized study.
Internal communications at an organization – Internal communications coordinator, Human resources specialist, corporate communications manager
Your role, in either internal communications or human resources, will be to provide the right information at the right time to the right people within the company. You may be involved in recruiting new staff, raising awareness about training or professional development programs, or ensuring company guidelines and regulations are clearly communicated.
Technical Writer – Proposal writer, copywriter, editor, web content writer, social media writer
As a technical writer, for example, you'll combine your communications courses with industry-specific classes to learn the processes and terminology of the field you want to enter. If you're working for an engineering firm, then you'll need to talk like an engineer for employee memoranda and newsletters. You'll need to take these terms and translate them like a financial analyst for the Annual Report and shareholders' meetings, and you may need to soften the language and focus on the environmental safeguards for media releases.
The general business world at large – Administrative assistant, customer service representative
Without good business communication, the internal and external structure of a business can face numerous challenges. When communication lines are open between a business and its customers, it can directly affect sales. When a business effectively communicates to prospects and customers how its products and services can benefit them, it converts prospects into customers. Good communication ultimately boosts the bottom line of a business.
With communications playing such a key role in any business or organization, a communications degree is a great way to enter the business world.
Regardless of product or industry, entry-level communications roles will require you to demonstrate strong written and oral communication and presentation skills, along with knowledge of how a business functions across departments. And that’s just the start – once you’ve found your passion, a degree in communications will help open many doors.
Combined with the right skills, you can certainly get a lot of rewarding jobs with a communications degree.
Interested in a career in communications? Take a look at the following communication jobs posted on Monster.ca: