by Brian Krueger, CEO, CollegeGrad.com
Think about college graduation last year. Some of your graduating friends likely had jobs already lined up. Yet many did not. Why were some “lucky” and some were not? The simple answer is that luck had very little to do with it. Some were prepared, others were not.
So as you look forward to your future graduation date, take action now to be prepared to be one of the “lucky” ones with a job offer in hand.
Here are six simple steps to having a job offer in hand at graduation:
1. Know what you want to do. Your major and your degree do not define what you will do after graduation. You need to do the career planning and research in advance. Work with your campus career center to do the testing and counseling needed. We have information on more than 300 careers at CollegeGrad.com you can research, all online and all free to access.
2. Develop your resume. This is often the hardest first step for most college students. Your resume should be started when you enter college and updated as you take additional classes and gain work experience. Don’t know where to start? Try one of the free Quickstart Resume Templates at CollegeGrad.com. They cover majors from Accounting to Zoology and they are all free. Just drop in your content and you’re ready to go.
3. Research employers. Find out who is hiring and for what. Know the employers coming to campus and research those who won’t be at your campus, but are also hiring. At CollegeGrad.com we list the top 500 entry level employers along with job postings from each employer.
4. Prep for the interview. Learn how to behaviorally interview, whether you are asked a behavioral question or not. Know your competencies and learn how to illustrate them using the S-T-A-R technique: describe a Situation or Task, the Action you took, and the Results achieved. We give the top 50 interview questions along with examples of how to answer at CollegeGrad.com.
5. Get an internship. If you want to differentiate yourself after graduation, the internship will be the key differentiator. Not only will you gain practical work experience, you will also gain a better understanding of work in the real world. At CollegeGrad.com you can search for internships across literally thousands of employers.
6. Interview early. Interview as early as possible. That doesn’t mean you should give up if it’s late in the year and you do not yet have an entry level job or internship. Just that your odds are better the earlier you start.
Getting a great job straight out of college isn’t luck. It’s all about planning and preparation. Wherever you are in your college career, it’s never too early to start your job search.
Make use of the resources that are available to you. At CollegeGrad.com, our mission is to is to enable college students and recent grads with the tools, connections and information needed to be successful in finding a great job. Stop by. We’re here to help.