Summer is almost here and that means thousands of college seniors across the country will soon flood the job market in search of their first real job.
For the best chance of success in the job search, college seniors have a lot of preparation to do.
Here are a few tips to help those preparing to finish school get ready to enter the workforce – and hopefully land their dream job after graduation day.
• Take advantage of networking organizations: Use networking events on campus as an opportunity to expand your contacts and to become more comfortable with making conversation with people you just met. You’ll also learn how to interact with prospective employers and what experience and skills hiring managers value.
• Join your profession’s student group: You can build connections within your profession by attending industry student events. Treat every interaction like an interview – these people likely will be your contemporaries.
• Become friendly with career services: Get acquainted with the career services on your campus – they are there to help you find a job. Use their resources, their connections and their expertise to help you prepare throughout the year to land that ideal job. Make an appointment with a staff member to get personalized advice and guidance.
• Tap your network: You don’t have to go far to network – for industry insight, just look at your own network of family, friends, alumni and professors. Let them know you’re job hunting, they might know someone who’s already established in your desired field. Set up informational meetings when appropriate, or get in touch with an alumni in your desired field to build relationships and to learn what it’s like to work professionally in the industry.
• Perfect your resume: Don’t wait until the last minute to perfect your résumé. You want to be sure that if someone requests it after a school networking event, or a job opportunity arises, you’re prepared to capitalize on it immediately. There are countless ways to write a resume, but our tip is to keep it short and simple.
• Clean up your social media presence: It’s never too early to make sure your social media presence is work-friendly. Employers pay close attention to a potential candidate’s social media sites throughout the hiring process, so represent yourself well. If you wouldn’t show something to your mom or your teacher, take it down. Also, join LinkedIn to establish a professional online presence, and to connect with recruiters, alumni and industry leaders.
The sooner you get organized about your impending job search, the easier it will be. So before your last semester rolls around, begin to explore you desired career, network with industry professionals and work to build your resume. Give yourself the greatest opportunity to land the ideal job right from the start. Good luck!
Gabe McDonald is an IT Branch Manager at Addison Group, a nationwide provider of professional staffing and search services. Addison combines a national network and localized service for broad reach with a personal touch. Specialized practices deliver the right candidate at the right time in Administration & Human Resources, Finance & Accounting, Healthcare, and Information Technology. Addison has received Inavero’s Best of Staffing award for both Client and Candidate service for the past four years. Learn more at www.addisongroup.com.