Many college graduates don’t have a basic understanding of the hiring process. This lack of familiarity can create missteps that result in grads missing out on potentially perfect career opportunities.
Starting with the application phase, very often graduates do not recognize that getting an interview is a numbers game. Simply put, you have to apply to a lot of jobs, even jobs that may not be a “perfect fit.” Millennials tend to have very high expectations of what they are capable of right out of school, and sometimes overlook opportunities that could get them in a position where they are able to learn a lot and rise through the ranks quickly.
When conducting your job search, you must keep an open mind, and if an opportunity looks interesting, aligns with your future career path or appears to be challenging…APPLY! The more applications you get out, the more interviews you will get, and the more options and offers you will have to decide from.
ACE THE INTERVIEW
So you applied to a generous amount of jobs, and now you have an interview – it’s time to prepare! You never want to walk into an interview empty handed. You should spend a few days before reading through the job description and company information. Try and get an understanding of how the position fits into the company’s goals, and if that isn’t clear to you after researching the role and the company, write down any questions you have to ask during your interview. Along with questions, bring your resume, relevant work samples and a notebook to take notes. If the interviewer does not tell you next steps, ask so you can gain insight into the interview process. Make sure to close the interview with a statement of why you want the job and how you view yourself as a fit.
After your interview, follow up in some form, generally with a thank you note or e-mail that expresses your interest in the company and role, and that demonstrates what you learned during the interview process. Tell them you want the job, or next interview!
Job offers and rejections….You will not get every position you interview for, but you should walk away from every interview with additional information about yourself and your skills. IF you get rejected for a job, do not lose heart, it is part of the process. If you really felt you were a strong fit for the position, send a note asking for feedback. Some companies may not respond, but for those that do, you will gain insight into how you can improve the next time around.
Job Offers! The work you’ve put into your job search has finally paid off, and you receive a job offer. Negotiation is always a big question for students coming out of school…short and simple, some companies negotiate and some will not. It is always worth asking if you feel that the offer is not as good as it could be, but do not make your selection solely on the money. Salary matters, but it isn’t everything. A job that you enjoy – one that provides you an opportunity to shine and room to grow professionally – is worth more in the long run than a higher paying job that you hate.