Ace Your Job Search With these Six Tips
Once college seniors ace four years of exams they get to be tested all over again at countless job interviews. In many ways these can be some of the most important tests in a young person’s life. How well a graduate performs on an interview can determine how quickly they can enter the job market and start working towards a career. Unfortunately, most colleges don’t offer a course in how to get a job. However, there are a few things that new grads can think about before they go in for interviews.
1. Don’t apply to every job you see on the internet
Applying for one or two jobs can be exhausting. There are countless forms to fill out, customized cover letters to write, and in-person interviews to prepare for. So, how long will that energy last if you’re applying for 20 jobs in one week? It’s a good idea to pace yourself even if you really want that new job ASAP. Pick two or three jobs a week to really invest your time in and give it your all. This way the hiring department will see that you’re excited and enthusiastic rather than mistake your fatigue for disinterest (READ: “5 Steps to Acing a Job Interview”).
2. Do your research
Although there are a few professionals who simply don’t want their contact information to be found, most people’s information can be located somewhere on the internet if perhaps not on the company’s website. Make sure you know who you will be talking to, what pertinent information you might need about the specific job you’re applying to, and the company in general. Think of the research as studying and the interview as the final exam.
3. The cover letter
One thing many new grads don’t do is write an individualized cover letter for each job. It’s tempting to think that a job application is like the Common Application, one and done. However, applicants who don’t take the time to write a separate cover letter from scratch generally don’t get hired. This is why it’s important to focus in on just a couple of jobs at a time rather than spread yourself too thin and lose the opportunity to shine (READ: “6 Tips for a Successful Skype Interview”).
4. Apply for a job you actually want
Although this seems obvious, many people apply for tons of jobs they have absolutely no interest in. Of course at some point people have to work just to make money, but it’s a good idea to start out with an idealist point of view. Start by giving your enthusiasm to a field or company you feel passionate about. The hiring manager will definitely be able to tell if you love the job or if you are trudging through it and don’t really want to be there.
5. Connecting and contacts
Although there are many avenues in which to get hired, making connections still proves to be one of the best ways to get a foot in the door. Make as many relevant contacts as you can but make sure your interactions are genuine. People won’t want to help you out if they feel you are only in it for yourself. Be honest about your intentions (they will know you are looking for a job after all) but make sure your personality shines through during any communications or businesses meetings.
6. Patience is paramount
Although our current economy is making it easier for new grads to find a job, it doesn’t mean that they will find a career in their field straight away. It also doesn’t help that family and peers will be consistently comparing your job search to others but remember that good things come to those who wait (and work hard). Hang on to that part time student gig while you look for the perfect career fit (READ: “5 Things Employers Look For in a New Employee”).