How to Find a Job After Graduation
Congratulations on your shiny new degree! You’re onto the next phase of your life!
It’s equal parts thrilling and intimidating to leave behind four years of extracurricular activities, studying, and homework to venture into the world of job interviews, office schedules, and adulting. But you can land your first post-graduation job quickly and efficiently with the right amount of dedication and planning.
Tips for Your Post-Graduation Job Search:
- Define Your Job Goals
Not everyone knows what they want to be when they grow up, and that’s OK. It’s common for new grads to have multiple, if slightly vague, career ideas. But the more you narrow your career ideas down, the more targeted and ultimately successful your job search will be.
As you search for jobs, also conduct career research. Job descriptions can give you an idea of what different roles in different fields entail. For even more information, the Occupational Outlook Handbook by the Bureau of Labor Statistics is probably one of the most comprehensive databases of detailed job information.
- How Do You Want to Work?
There’s more to a job than what you do. You also need to know how you want to do it.
Do you want to work in an office every day with set hours? Or, would you rather have a flexible schedule and work from anywhere? Do you possess an entrepreneurial spirit and want to choose your own clients and workload as a freelancer?
These days, you’ve got a lot of options, so make sure you understand the pros and cons of each, then connect with the career path that has whatever you’re looking for.
- Focus on Companies, Not Jobs
Once you have a solid idea of what you want to do and how you want to do it, shift your focus from searching for jobs to researching companies you might want to work for.
While having a job you like is essential, the company you work for plays a considerable role in how you feel about the job. Understanding the company’s culture before you apply ensures you’re not wasting your time interviewing someplace you won’t be happy.
And while you’ll learn more about the company during the interview process, eliminating companies you have zero interest in working for makes your search more efficient, saving you precious time in the long run.
- Customize Your Resume
Your resume is a way to tell your professional life story. It summarizes your skills and experience in one or two pages. As a new grad, you may not think you have much to offer an employer. But as you think about summer jobs you had or volunteer work you performed, you may find you have a lot of transferable and soft skills that employers are looking for.
However, using the same resume for every job is a rookie mistake. Many employers use applicant tracking systems (ATS) to screen candidates quickly and efficiently. These bots look for keywords throughout your resume to see how well you match the position.
While you don’t want to stuff your resume full of meaningless keywords, you do want to tailor your resume for the position. So, start with your resume, then make sure you rewrite using keywords from the job posting to help demonstrate that you’re a good fit for the position.
- Get Social
Connect with the company you’re interested in working with on social media. Follow its profiles and “like” recent updates. It can be a great way to network and get your foot in the door.
Plus, more companies are leaning into social media for recruiting and hiring, so having a professional profile and using it is likely to help your chances of landing a job!
The Next Big Step
The post-graduation job hunt can easily seem like an intimidating task. But you’ll learn valuable experience and gain new job searching skills with each passing day. This is the most exciting moment of your career because the entire journey is laid out in front of you.
No matter how long ago you graduated, START WORK NOW can help you connect with a flexible, remote, or hybrid job.