Published on March 14, 2018
Updated on Sep. 17, 2018
‘Tis the season! You heard right, the job hunting season is now upon us! And whether you’ve been anticipating it or it’s snuck up on you, it is still majorly stressful. Between school, current jobs/internships and involvement in organizations the last thing we need is an added “full-time job”, which is essentially what job searching can feel like. What if there were ways to make this process feel less like a burden?
Here are 5 steps to help make the process more efficient, effective and maybe even, dare I say, fun?
- Keep count. Although it may seem tedious at first, keeping track of the each job you apply for makes the entire process easier in the long-run. This may mean keeping an Excel document or going the more artistic route and drawing yourself a table instead. Include the internship/job title, the name of the company, how you applied (LinkedIn or on the corporate website?), whether you have heard back or not, and the outcome. Doing this will help you put into perspective how far you’ve made it and how far you may still have to go.
- Make a connection. You’ve drafted your resume and written your cover letter. But it doesn’t stop there. In today’s day-and-age, looking into a candidate goes far beyond reading a resume and cover letter. Make sure that you establish a professional online presence not only on LinkedIn but on all other online platforms. And use social media to your advantage (the MU Career Center has some great resources for managing your online image)! Connect with people who are doing what you want to be doing via LinkedIn. Post a status on Facebook mentioning that you’re on a job hunt. It’s likely that if you don’t know someone that can help you get there, someone else in your network does. Networking and who you know is what will most likely help you land that dream job. Social media makes it so much easier for us to make those connections.
- Don’t waste time. This goes for both your time and the recruiter. See a job that you really want but you don’t meet any of the qualifications? Skip it. Spend the time that you have applying for jobs that you qualify for. Employers are not going to spend time reading up on a resume or cover letter if they don’t see the key qualifications stand out right away. If this is a job you know you want in the future, work towards it!
- Never twice. Before you send out that job application make sure you’ve updated your resume and cover letter to fit that specific job. You should NEVER send out the same resume and cover letter twice. Read and re-read the job listing to make sure you’re putting in key words/qualifications from it into your resume and cover letter. You will start seeing more results this way. Check out these great resources on resumes and professional communications.
- Find your unique value. Think of your past experiences and let those guide you in marketing yourself to prospective employers. This will take some introspection and time to think about what you have done in the past and where you want to see yourself in the future. Taking time to do so will make it a lot easier on you when figuring out what to put on your resume and cover letter and in the interview process as well. Use this time of reflection to energize you for what lies ahead in your future as well!
Overall, the job searching process can be a tedious one but there are ways to make it easier and more enjoyable! Make sure to check out the other great resources for job searching on the MU Career Center’s website: https://career.missouri.edu/jobs-and-internships/