Why is finding a job so hard? It feels especially hard when you know you need one. If you’re a graduating senior and you’ve had no luck on the job market, you’ve come to the right place. Sure, there’s Indeed and Glassdoor–but do you REALLY know how to find the perfect job for you? It’s all about where you look and how you prepare. Here are some tips to finding a job before you graduate….or just in general:
Don’t wait until the last minute
“The most successful job searches start your freshman year,” Pamela Goodman, Assistant Director of Employer Relations at Career Services. Knowing what you want to do is half the battle. It helps more if you know early on. There’s no rush and you don’t have to know what you’re looking for right away–but the better of an idea you have, the easier it’ll be. Just see what’s out there and get a feel for what an employer in your field is looking for.
Don’t just get involved on campus. Get involved in the community. Beyond the fact that community service always looks good on a resume, it’s a great way to develop your soft skills. Living in the age of technology has affected our soft skills quite a bit. Knowing how to do your job is always important, but do you know how to communicate? Are you adaptable? Do you know how to network? Are you a leader? Getting involved is a great way to develop those skills so you can answer “Yes” to all of those questions.
Try to get work-related experience
Honestly, it feels like finding an internship is just as hard as finding a job, but it really does bode well for you if you already have some work-related experience. And think about this…would you rather do an unpaid internship while you’re in school with a little more financial backing, or after you graduate when you’ll absolutely need a paycheck to sustain yourself? It’s a great way to build your resume, which is super important, and it’s a great way to see firsthand what you need to be prepared for when you officially start your career.
Do your research
Every employer is different, so it’s best to do some research before you apply for a job. A lot of companies are going to ask you why you want to work for them during the interview process. At that time, they’re looking for a competent response that aligns with their companies’ values. It will be very apparent if you studied up or if you just applied blindly. Even if you don’t really care about the company (which you should if you’re trying to work there), you have to at least be able to make it seem like you care.
Keep an eye out for job fairs
This is probably the best tip there is. A job fair is more than just typing words on a laptop and sending an email, Job fairs give you an opportunity to speak with someone. You can use your personality to “woo” the representative. Take the opportunity to brag about yourself. Be memorable. You don’t have as much room to do that when the entirety of the interaction is electronic. And even if the company isn’t necessarily in your field, introduce yourself anyway. They might have positions within the company that still fit your desires. And what’s more, they might know someone who DOES work in your field. Seize every opportunity.