Three tips on how to get a job offer before you graduate

Three tips on how to get a job offer before you graduate

The major reason people go to college is to get a job after graduation. However, as many recent grads will tell you, getting hired in today’s job market is not as easy as it sounds. As a professional recruiter, here’s my advice on how to secure multiple offers before you even get your diploma.

1) Cast a wide net. Employers today use a combination of tactics to find graduating talent—career fairs, recruiters, social networking—so your approach to castWideNet-300x300being discovered should cover all angles. Do everything you can; attend your school’s career fairs, and polish your Linkedin page and your resume. The message you broadcast about yourself has to be easily understood in the first few seconds. As a recruiter, I can tell you firsthand that I look at a resume for no more than five seconds to determine if I am going to pass or save it. No, the traditional resume is not dead, but a Linkedin profile can hold just as much weight. In fact, I often compare the two to see if the candidate has taken the time to be up to date and consistent across platforms.

2) Identify the resources around you. Last year, I met with the career services staff at the University of Delaware; they were an impressive group of people. They have access to the latest employment data, they create events and use the latest technology to help increase campus hiring. Most importantly, career groupConnectservices departments maintain a regular dialogue with the recruiting departments of hundreds of employers, a valuable asset that you should not hesitate to take advantage of.

3) Develop a scalable system for your own personal network. I emphasize the word scalable, because it will grow. If you’re not prepared for it, you will lose AmazingAlumni-Image-7.27-300x198touch with or miss out on important connections. If I had a time machine, I would go back a decade to when I was in school, and I would have started a system of tracking my network. Start with students, faculty and alumni. Note why they are in your database and create automatic reminders to reach out periodically, if only to share some relevant news about yourself or your school. There is strength in numbers. With a system in place, your network will expand and compound and you’ll reap the benefits. Personally, I use a combination of Evernote, Dropbox and Outlook to manage my contacts, notes, events, reminders and documents. After my first interaction with a new person, be that a phone conversation or email, I make a note in my Outlook calendar to contact him or her again three months later. It’s important to note a specific reason for the follow-up. Make it about them, perhaps asking for a progress update on a project they mentioned they were working on. My follow-ups tend to start with, ”Last week I was thinking of you because I saw an article that mentioned X. It triggered my curiosity to see how you made out since our last conversation.” Everyone likes to hear that they are being thought of, which is why this is a great approach.

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