With graduation season quickly approaching, college seniors across the country are on the hunt for their “dream job” as they look to embark into the next phase of their young adult life. Given the condition of the current job market however, many are finding it very difficult to land their first job. Job search engine Juju.com has put together five effective strategies to help recent grads landa job.
1. Make a Plan/Stay Organized – The more organized you are, the more effective you’ll be. Plus, the competition is organized, so you’d better be too. Think about which companies you want to work for, what other areas/industries your skills might apply to, and how you’re going to track and follow up with all the contacts you make in the course of your job search (hint: use a spreadsheet). If you plan well and execute your job search diligently, there’s a much better chance you’ll get what you want.
2. Think Before You Search – Consider your search terms carefully before you get started. What types of jobs do you want to see? Which ones will just clutter up your search results and waste your time? Which related terms should you be searching (ex. nurse vs. nursing)? Once you’ve got a good idea of exactly what you’re looking for, use the tools available on the “advanced search” page of most job sites to get the most relevant search results possible. Advanced search typically allows you to search by things like company name, job title, job freshness, and exact phrase. You can even specify which words should not appear in your results. When used correctly, these tools can save you hours of tedious screening time every week.
3. Don’t Repeat Your Work – If you’ve spent the time to carefully construct a job search that works well, don’t throw that work away only to redo it the next day. Bookmark your search, save it to your RSS reader, or sign up to have new matches delivered to your email address… just do something. Forgetting that great search term you came up with could cost you the opportunity you’ve been waiting for.
4. Create Several Versions of Your Resume – Each one should be tailored to an industry or function you’re interested in, so you’ll have a polished, well targeted version of your resume on hand when you find a position you want to apply for. One size does not fit all, especially in a highly competitive job market.
5. Apply to Jobs Selectively – The best applications are those which are tailored to the specific job and really focus on the needs and requirements in the job description. Not qualified? Then don’t apply! It’s a waste of your time and the recruiter’s. Focus your energies on the opportunities that really fit and you’ll get better results.
Finally, if you are truly not finding the positions you are looking for, you may consider obtaining an online MBA degree to expand your horizons.