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How To Look For Jobs After College

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Many colleges hire their past students to join administrative departments like admissions, development and academic advising. If you love your college and are passionate about higher education, consider speaking with the administrative team at your school to see if there are any open positions for recent graduates.

Turn Your Passion Into A Job

Use the skills you gained in college like time management, self-motivation and creative thinking to turn a passion into a job. For example, if you love yoga, earn teacher certification and find a studio looking to hire full-time instructors. If you’re an expert knitter, consider selling your creations through an online marketplace.

Most Common Problems With Finding A Job After College

There are a lot of reasons why finding a job after college is tough, but one reason stands out most of all: You dont have any experience.

Almost every job youll see listed even many supposedly entry-level jobs are going to require a certain level of experience.

And even if you spent every possible free moment in school looking for opportunities to gain this experience, theres still always the chance that by the time you finally get out on the hunt, you just wont have the experience necessary to get many of the positions youre hoping for.

Thats not the only problem that people just out of college are having when it comes to finding jobs in the real world theres also:

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Network Like It’s Your Job

Studies find that you’re 10 times more likely to land a job when your application is accompanied by an employee referral. However, you can’t get those coveted references without networking. Make it your mission to become an active networker.

Build a valuable professional network by getting involved in your alma mater’s alumni events, joining relevant LinkedIn groups online and finding face-to-face networking opportunities through relevant Meetup groups, professional association, and trade shows and conferences.

Informational interviews will become your best friends. As you grow your network and discover new people who work in a field, industry, or company that interests you, reach out to them to set up an informational interview that will allow you to learn how they got to where they are in their careers and what you can do to get your foot in the door. This article by Danny Rubin will help you craft the perfect networking email for such requests.

Network The Right Way

Finding a Job After College

Ah yes, the buzzword youve been waiting for.

Most people dread going to networking events, but heres some good news: If youre interning or volunteering in the field you ultimately want to work in, youre already networking organically. Youre building relationships with people who are doing what you want to do, using something I call the Proximity Principle.

Whats the Proximity Principle? Its all about finding opportunities to do what you love. And its as simple as getting around the right people and being in the right places. For example, if you want to be a professional chef, you should be around other professional chefs in a place where theyre mastering their craft .

This is the right way to network and now those relationships become an important part of your search for your first post-college job.

Why? Because relationships are the key to a good resumé.

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Appear Professional On Social Media

Credit: Flamingo Images, Pinone Pantone, Avector Shutterstock

The first thing you should be doing as a student or graduate job searcher is making sure you have a professional online presence.

We’re not suggesting you post photos of yourself wearing work clothes all the time , and you definitely don’t need to tweet solely about work. But it’s essential to present yourself as respectful, trustworthy and employable on social media to convince recruiters to hire you.

  • New! Try our graduate job search engine for the latest opportunities.
  • Best For Undecided Career Paths: Avenica


    Avenica was originally founded in 1998 as an entry-level-only staffing agency called GradStaff, but was rebranded as Avenica after being acquired by University Ventures in 2017. Thanks to a proprietary behavioral interviewing process, Avenica helps entry-level job seekers launch meaningful careers, making it the best choice for grads who are uncertain about their future career paths.

    Avenica works with college graduates to tap into their strengths, personality, career and organization fit, and long-term goals through individualized coaching. To land a job through Avenica, youll need to be added to their talent network by completing a short form on their website and speaking with a staff member. Once the team at Avenica has a better sense of who you are and what you can do, theyll assist you with finding open entry-level jobs that match your skills. Despite its more personalized process, Avenica is 100% free to use for any entry-level job seekers.

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    Network Early And Often

    Put aside images of that sleazy, cheesy, bad-salesman person who shows up at every event to talk about him- or herself. Networking is about forming relationships and taking a genuine interest in people around you. How often have you heard people talking about landing a job because of an old college buddy?

    Yes, you should attend events related to your field of study, but if youre not exactly the social type, look for people on LinkedIn and people at other colleges and universities. Practical networking tips include:

    • Meet people through people you already know.
    • Look for community groups related to your field.
    • Always have your business cards with you .
    • Be well-read in your field so that you can talk about it easily.
    • Ask people questions rather than talking about yourself.
    • Ask your new contact for suggestions of other people to meet.
    • Practice networking conversations with a trusted friend if they don’t come naturally to you.
    • Be aware of body languagesmile and uncross your arms.
    • Dont try to be somebody youre not.
    • Dont have an agenda be open to meeting all kinds of people. You never know where a conversation will lead.

    The Current Job Landscape For Recent Grads

    Finding a Job AFTER College || Great TIPS and GAP year strategy
    • In 2016, the employment rate for bachelors degree holders aged 20 to 24 was 86%.
    • In January 2017, the unemployment rate for people aged 25 and older with at least a bachelors degree was only 2.5%.
    • In 2016, 67% of employers surveyed by CareerBuilder said they planned to hire recent college graduates. It was the highest rate since 2007.
    • In September 2017, only 4% of recent graduates were unemployed.
    • In 2016, employers reported they planned to hire about 5% more recent college graduates than they had in previous years.

    Graduates looking for work should keep in mind that theyre in a much better position than job seekers who havent completed degrees. For example, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that in January 2017, the unemployment rate for high school graduates was 5.3 percentwhich is more than double the unemployment rate for recent college graduates with at least a bachelors degree. Similarly, those who completed some college or an associate degree had a 3.8 percent unemployment rate, compared to a 7.7 percent rate of unemployment for those who had not completed high school.

    And although most recent grads may not be able to land their dream jobs straight out of college, these statistics illustrate that employers are indeed willing to hire workers fresh out of school.

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    Join Professional Development Groups

    Job board websites can feel overwhelming when there are so many job postings. Narrow down your search by finding groups for a specific field or location. These groups can also be a great place to connect with other job seekers who can share career insights.

    Pro tip: Facebook and LinkedIn are great places to find groups, such as remote job seekers and city-specific jobs.

    You Won’t Get The Fun Tasks

    You chose your field of study with certain jobs in mind. However, those jobs are probably at the higher end of the pay scale. For your first job out of college, you will find yourself doing things that may seem menial or beneath you. There are a few reasons for this.

    First, as an entry-level employee, you’re at the lower end of the pay scale, therefore the lower-end tasks go to you. Secondly, and this is really important for you to realize quickly, you’re being tested.

    If you want to get bigger, more exciting tasks to handle at your new job, you need to knock those trivial ones out of the park. Don’t just shuffle through them. Take care of your assignments and maybe even see if there is a better way to do them. When you show that you can handle these little jobs, and handle them well, you’ll earn the opportunity to get cooler assignments.

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    How Many Students Get A Job After College

    A college degree is no guarantee of a job, but its also your best chance to get one if you arent starting a business or learning a trade. According to the University of Washington, 53% of recent graduates are either unemployed or underemployed.

    Simply put: looking for a job after college is hard for the majority of grads.

    However, employment rates shoot way up to a range of 83-91% for college graduates aged 25-34. This shows that, in time, almost all college grads find jobs over timeso dont worry about being stuck in a job you dont want.

    Unfortunately, most of the data focuses on young adults aged 25 and over, but not on recent graduates aged 22-25, who need career support the mostand Im speaking from experience.

    Youre Not Alone In Your Graduate Job Hunt

    Smart Tips for Finding a Job Fresh Out of College

    Itâs common to feel lonely or inadequate when youâre adjusting to post-university life and the ups and downs of job hunting â especially if several of your friends have already secured jobs. Try not to compare yourself to others, because everyoneâs experience is different: they might be going into a less competitive career sector or have known what they wanted to do from an early age.

    Remember, also, that your fellow job-hunters may be feeling a similar way to you, even if they appear more confident. Siobhan says: âSpeak to any friends who havenât secured a job about their job search and maybe spend some time applying together. Even if youâre looking to gain totally different roles, you can motivate each other and talk things through.â If your friends donât live nearby, check in on them regularly and arrange a future meet-up to give yourselves something to look forward to.

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    How To Stay Motivated If You Cant Find A Job

    Not being able to find a job can be disheartening, and its easy for job seekers to start feeling inadequate as they continue their search. But recent graduates who are looking for their dream job dont have to feel that way. The following are tips to stay motivated as you look for a position.

    Dont take a rejection personally as you often do not know the real reasons behind an employers decision, says Brush. Unfortunately, a job search can be a frustrating and discouraging process. A job search takes an average of two to six months of organized effort.

    Having a mentor can help job hunters learn more about a field and gain a perspective that graduates arent likely to get when theyre in school. Also, mentors can provide encouragement that can help recent grads keep their spirits high during their job search.

    College graduates have not yet developed advanced time management skills. Now is the time. They need excellent time management and project management skills in any job for a company, says Manciagli. Using their calendar, they need to block time, remove distractions and focus on improving their job search steps. This will avoid frustration, since they will now be busy and productive.

    When dealing with stress, most people tend to let healthy habits fall by the wayside. By continuing to eat healthy foods, exercise and get enough sleep, job hunters can keep their bodies and minds functioning well enough to combat stress.

    Narrow Down Your Search

    I asked a recent college graduate how many applications he submitted to companies each week as part of his job search. His response was, As many as I need to get my parents off my back.

    Unfortunately, sending out countless applications isnt strategic and is typically unsuccessful because:

    • Its hard to stick out from the pack of other applicants when youre trying to be all things to all people.
    • You cant properly research and follow up with hundreds of job applications.
    • Juggling too many applications can increase the likelihood of spelling mistakes, misstating goals, or missing scheduled phone screens.

    Instead, I recommend doing enough homework to reasonably target 10-12 companies. This way youll have the time and energy to give each application the attention necessary to ensure theyre filled out properly. And youll be able to better hone in on the unique skills youd bring to the job and really stand out to employers.

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    Frequently Check Job Openings

    Every company has a different hiring schedule. So, it is a good idea to develop a habit of checking job openings online frequently. Professional social networking sites like LinkedIn can help you stay updated about recent job openings. You can even set up a notification alert on many job sites to know about a vacancy as soon as it is posted.

    Job Searching In The Pandemic

    Guide to Getting a Job After College

    Job searching during the pandemic is tough for everyone. And, the reality is that it will probably be tougher on new grads. While it might be easy to blame the pandemic for your lack of job offers, new grads always face obstacles when looking for that first job.

    As a new grad, there are certain things you may need to do during your first real job search. Some of this advice is specific for the pandemic. However, its great advice for every new grad, no matter when they graduate.

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    Emphasise The Skills You Have

    Work experience, internships and volunteering are essential for ensuring that your CV doesn’t look empty at the application stage.

    When you’re writing your CV, focus on the skills you do have, rather than the ones you don’t. Analyse the job description and list all the skills and personal qualities that make you a good fit for the job.

    Be sure to emphasise soft and transferable skills such as communication, leadership ability, team working and attention to detail. To help you, take a look at the essential skills employers are looking for.

    However, as you’re likely to lack direct experience in your chosen field, don’t gloss over this fact. Instead use it to demonstrate your passion and motivation to learn. Highlight examples of your dedication and commitment to learning, gained through volunteering work, internships or work shadowing.

    Also, don’t undervalue your commitment to any societies you’ve been part of while at university, or sports teams you’ve been involved with. This is because you’ll have developed skills in areas such as team working and leadership. Learn more about the importance of extracurricular activities.

    See our example CVs and discover how to write a cover letter for a jobseeker with no experience.

    Invest In Your Passion

    Do you love yoga or pilates? Can’t spend enough time on the ski slopes? Are you a rock-climbing pro? Love to paint? If you have a passion that you can turn into a part-time job, consider investing in a training course and get certified, or even teach it on your own.

    For example, you could take a yoga teacher training course, become a certified ski or rock climbing instructor, or become an art teacher at your local community center. Some activities can even be taught online.

    Whatever you love to do, look into how you can make a job out of it. Not only will you have a blast at work, but you’ll also gain the experience and skills you need to turn your hobby into a job that you can always fall back on.

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    How To Get A Graduate Job

    Tired of writing detailed, heartfelt cover letters to potential employers who reply with… nothing? We feel your pain. But this guide can help you get the graduate job you want .

    Credit: forestgraphic , Luis Molinero Shutterstock

    The graduate job market isn’t easy, and you won’t be alone in wondering how to stand out from the crowd.

    But, if you’re searching for a graduate job, have faith. With some small changes to the way you approach applications, you could be living it up in your ideal office before you know it.

    The right job is out there waiting for you, and we’ve compiled some tips to help you get there.

    Treat Your Job Search Like A Job

    How to Get a Job After College

    Its possible that youve heard this advice before, and theres a reason so many people say it. Job hunting is emotionally and mentally draining, but treating it like work can help you set boundaries and find some balance.

    The biggest thing is to be consistent. Commit to a set number of hours per day for job searching, and use that time only for job searching. Make sure its a realistic amount of time that fits in with the rest of your life. Make a list of things to complete during those hours. Your list can include things like creating a LinkedIn profile, preparing for interviews, signing up for a job board, emailing connections, researching companies and completing applications.

    You will also need to stay organized. Creating a job diary, even if thats a Google Doc, will help you keep track of everything. It can include dates when you reached out to specific connections so you know when to send a follow-up email, and dates that specific applications are due. Setting reminders or alerts on your phone can help as well.

    Your job should also include a lot of research. Research which industries are hiring, what skills you still need to develop, and any news and trends relevant to your job search.

    Job hunting is a big undertaking, so spend time developing relationships with others who are doing the same thing youre doing. These can be people you know from school or people you’ve met while networking. Youll help each other stay on track and think positively.

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