As a recent or soon-to-be college graduate, you are ready to start on a new adventure. It’s time to find a job! Put your best foot forward by avoiding these five common pitfalls.
Not Knowing What You Want to Do
Most people don’t find their perfect job immediately upon graduating from college. That’s OK. Interests change, circumstances change and careers change. However, even in the short term, you need a plan. Employment searches shouldn’t be based on wild guesses. Rather than sending out hundreds of resumes and hoping something sticks, begin by identifying 8-10 positions in which you sincerely are interested. Then, do your homework and research the companies. Genuine enthusiasm and knowledge shine through on application materials and in interviews.
Sending Out One Resume
Every job is slightly different and every resume you send should be too. A 2018 study found 98 percent of Fortune 500 companies use Applicant Tracking Systems or software to screen resumes. (Jobscan, 2018) If your document doesn’t contain the right keywords, the ATS may eliminate it from consideration before a real person even sees it. Follow these Tips for Tailoring Your Resume for a Specific Job.
Having an Unprofessional Online Presence
Maybe as a teenager, you posted some things online you wish you hadn’t. Search your name and double-check your Google resume. Delete inactive accounts and inappropriate posts. And, remember, employers are looking for good news as well as bad. Take the time to develop your personal brand online. A strong LinkedIn profile is a perfect place to start. Also, consider showcasing your professional skills through personal websites, blogs and social media accounts.
Allowing Lack of Experience to Hold You Back
The phrase “At least 2 (or 5 or 10) years of experience required” frequently appears on job postings. This can be frustrating for new graduates. How can you gain experience if you can’t get a job? Even if you don’t specifically fulfill the requirements, highlight what you have done. Many organizations are willing to accept internships, temporary assignments, volunteer work and even related summer jobs, especially if a candidate is otherwise well-qualified.
Failing to Use All of Your Resources
Looking for a job can feel isolating, but you are not alone. Don’t forget about the following:
- The College Career Center
College career centers offer a variety of programs ranging from resume reviews to alumni networking. As you paid for this service as part of your tuition, take advantage of the opportunities.
- Your Network
According to industry estimates, 70 to 85 percent of people land a job through networking. (Payscale, 2017) Let you friends, family and acquaintances know about your job hunt. Someone unexpected may be able to help.
- Employment Agencies
Professional recruiters provide job placement and career advice at no cost to you. In addition, staffing services are a fantastic way to try out various positions and gain on-the-job experience.
If you are looking for a job in Iowa, Nebraska or Minnesota, Aventure Staffing is here for you. Learn more about our programs for college students and recent graduates today!