7 Job Search Tips for New College Graduates

Sep 28, 2023

Congratulations! You’ve turned your tassel at graduation and now it’s time to make your debut in the professional world. Starting your career is exciting, and it all starts with a focused job search. Whether you’re fresh out of a summer internship or continuing to explore employment opportunities after graduation, use these 7 tips for new college graduates to help you make the most out of your job search.

 

1. Maintain a positive attitude.

Seeing your friends and former classmates land jobs before or shortly after graduation can be discouraging if you aren’t getting the same results. Know that countless new college graduates are still searching for a job like you are. With that said, career growth is not a linear process and will look different for everyone, so comparing your job search to others is not a healthy indicator of your progress. Stay focused on your personal job search and celebrate small victories, like landing a phone interview.

 

2. Update your resume.

Academics have been at the forefront of your life for several years, so it’s likely time to refresh your resume. Add any relevant work experience that you’ve completed during your studies and add bullet points that describe the impact you achieved. If you do not have work experience coming out of college, there are several other ways to highlight your skills on a resume. Consider including descriptions of relevant coursework and projects that align with the jobs you are applying to. Volunteer work and involvement in student organizations can also be valuable to incorporate into your experience.

 

3. Polish your LinkedIn profile.

Think of your LinkedIn profile as your virtual resume. After all, it is the largest professional networking platform in the world and is frequently cited as one of the top online job boards. Make sure your profile has the following:

  • Professional profile picture: Upload a high-quality photo of yourself, ideally from the shoulders up. If you don’t have an existing headshot, ask a friend or family member to take a photo of you in good lighting wearing an interview-appropriate outfit.
  • Thoughtful headline and summary: Use your headline to highlight your current role or the industry you are a part of. Your summary should show your expertise, personality, and passion for your field.
  • Up-to-date education and employment information: Ensure that your work and education history is accurate and consider adding descriptions as you would on a resume.
  • Additional sections if applicable: Add relevant skills, projects, recognitions, and certifications to your profile. You can even ask a previous manager or coworker to write a positive recommendation that will appear on your profile.

 

4. Network, network, network!

While LinkedIn is a great platform to build your professional network, making meaningful connections goes beyond sending a request. An effective way to do this is by conducting informational interviews with people working in your desired field or at a company you want to work for. Searching for junior alumni on LinkedIn and messaging them to schedule a phone or Zoom conversation about their careers can give insight into their day-to-day responsibilities and the skills they use in their positions. You may even choose to ask them about the interview process and tips for a standout resume and cover letter. While this may open a door for a potential job within their network, remember that an informational interview should not be seen as a transactional conversation that leads to a job. Focus on learning more about them and how that information can benefit you during your job search.

 

5. Stay consistent and organized.

If you are not currently employed, treat job searching like your job. Adopt habits that organize your job search that best fits your routine. Having a set schedule is an excellent first step! Set aside a few hours each day when you are most productive to concentrate on applying for jobs. Establish a specific number of jobs you aim to apply for each day or each week to keep yourself accountable. Try keeping a spreadsheet that you update with each position you applied to and what day you sent your application in. Interviewers may ask where you found the job listing and what stood out to you about the description, so it’s a good idea to have this information on record.

 

6. Practice your interview skills.

Rehearsing for an interview is a smart way to prepare for success as you send in your applications. Research common interview questions and answer them how you would to a hiring manager. You can do this by practicing in front of a mirror, recording yourself, or having a friend or family member conduct a mock interview. There are also several online practice resources to help you ace your next interview, like Google’s Interview Warmup which allows you to practice interview questions and gain insights on your answers.

 

7. Connect with a recruiter.

Getting in touch with a recruiter can help you find better opportunities, receive professional advice, and expand your network during your job search. Recruiters often know about jobs that aren’t listed on sites such as LinkedIn or Indeed and can match you with openings that align with your existing experience—all while saving you time and money. Our expert recruiters at Temporary Solutions are hiring positions in several industries, so contact us today to see how we can help you with your job search!

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