How Do I Turn My College Experience Into A Job Offer?
Finding a job and finding the right job after college are two very different things.
If you want to be successful in your job search, you should focus on finding the right job. An important key to accomplishing that goal will be to properly prepare yourself for life after college. It's not enough to sign up for a few on-campus interviews and hope for the best. An offer may come, but it may not be for the type of job you are truly seeking. Or, worse yet, an offer may not come at all.
To fully prepare yourself for your job search, you will need to understand more about the job search process.
You need to understand what is happening on the other side of the resume review. You need to understand what is happening on the other side of the job fair booth. You need to understand what is happening on the other side of the interview desk. You need to understand what is happening on the other side of the telephone. You need to understand the other side of the process. You need to understand all aspects of the process, from each perspective.
Your job search is a process. Actually, it is a multi-process, with many concurrent processes (based on multiple employer contacts) taking place at the same time. To reach the next level in the process, you need to successfully pass the previous level. So start your job search on a solid foundation by understanding how the process works and work your way successfully through each level toward your ultimate goal.
The Job Search Process
Your ultimate goal is your new job. Yet there will be several steps of completion required along the path to this goal. The following are the basic steps in the job search process.
- Identify personal skills, competencies and abilities
- Career exploration
- Research career types
- Research industries
- Research geographic locations
- Understand career requirements
- Career preparation
- Academic—major, classes, projects
- Extracurricular—activities, clubs, leadership, sports
- Experience—work, internships, volunteering
- Establish your career objective
- Job type
- Prepare job search tools
- Find hiring companies
- Secure the interview
Seems simple enough, right? Just follow the yellow brick road to job search success.
Unfortunately, what the process flow does not show is the iterative nature of the job search. There will be failures along the way and you will be repeating each of these steps for every employer you are pursuing. And, with multiple linear processes, it is subject to non-aligned timing. In other words, you may find yourself at square one with Employer #1 at the same time you complete the process and have an offer in hand from Employer #2. Worse things can happen in your job search, but this type of timing situation does provide a decision dilemma of its own.
Seek to master each step in the employer interviewing process so that both you and the employer can evaluate your overall best fit. Mastering the job search process does not mean that each job pursuit will result in a job offer (since not all opportunities will be right for you). Yet mastering the process should result in finding the right job for you. This website is not just about finding a job. It is about finding the right job.
Notice that the job search process above closely mirrors the resources found on this website. For good reason. CollegeGrad.com is designed as a guide. It will provide you with the information you need (and then some) for each step in the job search process.