Landing a job after graduation can be tough. You’re new to the industry and you’re competing with other graduates and professionals with experience. In all actuality, it can take the average college graduate as long as 9 months to find a job – and in many cases, not a very good one. Going several months without income can cause financial strain on anyone. The solution… take efficient steps to speed up the job hunting process. Some of these steps are listed below
1. Decide What Industry You’re Interested In
Applying to jobs that you’re not interested in or don’t pay enough are really a waste of your time and the employer’s time. Before you start the job hunting process, determine which industries you’re interested in working in. Look at your educational background and experience. Try to find something that aligns with what you already know so that it will be easier to get your foot through the door.
2. Resume and Cover Letter
Even if you don’t have “real world” experience to add to your resume, as a college graduate there is a lot that you can put on a resume that will show a potential employer what your skills and area of study are. Resources such as Hloom.com resume builder can help you put together the perfect entry level resume. It might display information such as your course of study, any academic achievements or rewards you may have received, community service or charitable events you’ve participated in, and any skills you may have picked up from internships or work study programs.
3. Be Bold and Reach Out
Don’t wait for your dream job to be posted on a job board, go out there and search for it! The best way to speed up the job hunt is to go out there and assert yourself to get the job you want. Start by looking for companies in your area that have jobs you’d be interested in doing. Check to see if they’re hiring at the moment. If they are, send in an application, cover letter, and resume. If they are not hiring, send in a cover letter and an email and ask them to keep it on file should they be hiring in the future.
4. Attend Networking Events
Networking is often one of the quickest ways to land a job. Knowing someone in the industry can get you in the door. Start checking local hotels and community websites to learn about networking events coming to the area. Make sure that you have a few copies of your resume and cover letter in a folder to hand out. Go to these events, take notes, and mingle with the business professionals in attendance. You never know where you might meet someone who is in need of a skill that you have.
5. Post on Job Boards and Classifieds
Employers aren’t the only ones who can post things about jobs – so can you. If you really want to put yourself out there to land a job faster, start advertising yourself. Post your resume on digital job boards for employers to see, add an announcement to your Facebook or LinkedIn feed, or create an advertisement and place it in the classifieds such as Craigslist. This will depend on the job and the industry. If you’re looking for a software engineer job or trying to move up your field, you’re going to have different standards.
This is a tip that should never be overlooked – follow-up. As you’re putting out applications and resumes with companies it is imperative that you follow-up on the status. They are receiving hundreds of resumes on a daily basis and therefore can often forget about your submission. Reaching out to them via email, or phone lets them know that you’re still interested and also puts your name back in the front of their mind. Be sure that you don’t look desperate or like you’re stalking them for a job. Contacting a potential employer once approximately two weeks after submitting your resume is ideal.
The job market is a tough competition filled with applicants from all levels of experience looking to get hired. To land your first job you must be professional and assertive. Each of these ideas should help you get noticed and increase your chances of being hired.