Helpful Tips to Land the Job
Remember these tips to help you feel prepared and land your next role.
Starting your job search can feel daunting. Trying to sort through internships, entry-level jobs, or your next career move and identify the right fit for you and your goals takes effort. The good news is you’re not alone during this process. Here are some tips to help you feel prepared and secure your next position.
Leverage the power of your network.
Take advantage of the networks you've developed while in school - visit career services, leverage resources (like the Ascend Network), and ask for recommendations from professors, advisors, etc.
Utilize informational interviews.
Reach out to someone in a role you admire and ask for a brief informational interview. Prepare questions such as:
1.) How did you land your role?
2.) What advice do you have for me?
3.) Who would you recommend I speak with next?
This is a wonderful way to build your industry knowledge, get advice on next steps, and make connections.
You don't have to match 100% of the job description.
Companies write job descriptions to depict their ‘perfect’ candidate…who may not even exist! Be confident in the skills and abilities you have and utilize your cover letter to share how they translate to the role.
Consider the big picture.
Salary is important, but there are so many other aspects of work life. Do your research and ask intentional questions about benefits, workplace culture, and company values.
Your first job may not be your ‘dream job’, but it will be an important step in your career journey. Broaden your search, explore jobs and companies you haven’t before, and remember the best opportunities can come when and where you least expect them.
A polished resume is crucial.
A recruiter can gauge whether you will be moved forward in the recruitment process within seconds of reviewing your resume. Have multiple people (including your Ascend Career Mentor) review your resume and triple check for errors.
Make your resume results oriented.
It’s not enough to describe each task you completed at a previous job. Include HOW your work made an impact for the organization.
Personalized cover letters are important.
Don’t just mention you want to work at the company or list your experiences – discuss HOW those experiences have prepared you specifically for the role and how you can add value to the organization.
You have more experience than you realize.
In cover letters and interviews, you can draw from experiences in extracurricular activities, classwork, and more. For example, you don’t have to have professional leadership experience to speak to your ability to lead. Be creative!
Do your research & ask questions.
Before an interview, research the company – check out their website, recent news articles, social media channels, etc. In the interview, convey your interest and engagement by asking genuine questions about the organization and the role you’re interviewing for.
Follow up with a thank-you email.
After an interview, follow up with your interviewer. This solidifies your interest in the role, showcases your engagement in the recruitment process, and leaves a positive impression.
It may not seem like it, but it’s normal not to have a job lined up before graduation. Stay positive and set a goal for yourself, such as submitting a certain number of applications or spending a certain number of hours job searching per week.
If you already have an account on the Ascend Network, be sure to reach out to your Career Mentor for help drafting or finalizing your resume, crafting cover letters, and identifying the best roles for you to apply. If you’d like to learn more about the Ascend Network and discuss these tips and strategies, schedule a quick chat.
Learn more about what an elevator pitch is and how to use one.
Learn how to construct a successful resume when you have less professional/internship experience.