Are there any job search strategies and tips available for recent college graduates?
If you’re a recent college grad, when it comes to the job search, you got the short end of the stick.
There’s no doubt about it.
According to some estimates, around 50% of all recent college graduates are unemployed or underemployed.
Additionally, on average, it takes around six months to find gainful employment after college.
Although recent labor statistics suggest that recent college graduates have it a lot easier than recent high school graduates who are looking for employment, the tough job market and a mountain of student debt still force many recent grads to wonder why they even got a degree in the first place.
If you’re fresh out of college and struggling to find a job, there are things you can do to become a more effective jobseeker.
There’s not much you can do to make your dream job fall into your lap, but there are some proactive strategies that will get you on the right track and improve your chances of finding a job.
Ask your friends how they search for jobs.
They’ll probably say they search for them on online job boards like Craigslist and Monster. That’s how almost everyone searches for jobs. So, the competition for openings that are posted on popular job boards is fierce. Employers get hundreds of résumés and applications for each opening they advertise on sites like Craigslist.
If you want to increase the chances of an employer actually seeing your résumé, you should focus on applying to openings most other candidates don’t know about.
To do this, you’ll need to go to the websites of individual employers you’re interested in and see if they’re advertising positions.
Additionally, you can call employers on the phone and ask them if they’re hiring. Cold calling potential employers can be nerve-wracking, but it can pay off, especially if you call an employer that’s hiring for a position they haven’t posted online yet.
While you should try to find jobs differently than most people try to find them, you shouldn’t totally steer clear of job boards. Job search engines like Indeed.com can be an excellent resource, and you might actually get lucky on a job board like Craigslist.
Just keep in mind that you probably shouldn’t solely devote all of your energy to pursuing leads on popular job boards.
Your family members and close college friends may not be able to help you out a whole lot when you’re searching for jobs.
It’s important to network with everyone you know, not just people in your close circle of family and friends. The more people you let know that you’re looking for a job, the higher your chances of finding a job are.
As you probably already know, it’s easiest to get a job through a referral from someone you know, and the majority of positions that are filled are never even advertised.
If calling up acquaintances you haven’t talked to in a while to ask them about job leads makes you nervous, use the internet to your advantage.
Facebook and LinkedIn are great tools to use for networking, and using them can take away some of the awkwardness associated with networking outside of your comfort zone.
If you want to network effectively, focus on communicating with people you know who are in your desired field, and try to get in contact with as many people as you can.
This is crucial, and it’s something many applicants don’t do. Employers can tell when you’re just sending them a generic cover letter that you send to everyone.
If you really want to wow a hiring manager, write about exactly how your specific experience makes you a good fit for the specific job.
Additionally, research prospective employers and include a paragraph in each of your cover letters explaining why you want to work at each particular business.
You may want to tailor your résumé to fit each position as well. You can do this by including some bullet points in your résumé that show you’re able to perform the duties of the specific job you’re applying to.
Looking for a job in this economy requires a lot of patience, persistence, and hard work. Trying out strategies like the ones listed above will help make your search better and more effective. No matter how difficult your situation as a jobseeker may seem, just do your best to not lose hope and know that something will eventually come through.