Another year over! (Though, here at Greenwich at least, we still have one final master’s project to submit in September.)

Many of you are probably now looking for summer job placements or permanent work. That’s why I thought I’d share some of my own experiences at this important time of year…

Summer placement - my dos and don’ts

Try not to switch off completely – though in hindsight, I believe it’s important not to put too much pressure on.

Instead, stay in the loop by doing all those other things you’ve been meaning to do. Enter a competition, volunteer at a growing community garden, watch Gardeners World repeats, visit and critique projects – whatever will help you stay engaged with your work that you were too busy to do while you were studying!

Identify one weakness and try and get some experience in this area. For example, I knew my planting knowledge was poor, so I found 2-3 days’ work a week with a local landscape construction company.

Full-time job - my dos and don’ts

Write a shortlist as soon as you can. Then cross-check with your connections on LinkedIn and filter based on each company’s ethos and work.

The portfolio takes time to pull together. I started to prepare things back in March, but if you’re not there yet, don’t panic – just set aside a couple of days. Fit in time to run your portfolio past someone else – ideally a tutor or a colleague who already works in the industry already. In your haste, you can miss some obvious pointers.

I sent out a 10-page version of my portfolio by email and printed a longer, 20+ page version. I don’t know the magic formula, but in hindsight I wouldn’t include page numbers or pay for fancy printing! Following two interviews I have had, I already want to change the order and structure based on how the discussions went in reality.

In the future, I will think about how I can make my portfolio more flexible – for example, printing each project as a mini batch of work rather than an inflexible A3-bound book.

I also need to update my website, which could also address this issue. I pay £30 a year to host my Wordpress site, and I think it’s just about worth it for the 20-30 organic visitors and 100+ page views I get a month. Posting blog posts will get you far more traction.