While you were still at college, you couldn’t wait for graduation day. You’ve had some good times, that’s for sure. However, you were also stressed out about all those exams and papers. You were waiting for that moment when you could say “whoa, it’s over.”
Now, you’re faced in front of a whole new challenge. It’s the overwhelming feeling known among recent graduates as the “now what?”
Be ready to start looking for your first job as soon as possible! This process will be challenging, but exciting at the same time.
Today, we’ll list 7 things you must do when you’re trying to build a successful career right out of college.
- Make a Career Plan
Did you use the full potential of the career advising services at your university? If that was the case, then you already know how to make a career plan. If you weren’t interested to visit these offices, you can overcome that disadvantage.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Envision where you want to be. Your education gives you few career options. If, for example, your major was psychology, you can work as an educational psychologist, high intensity therapist, counseling psychologist, and so on. You need a direction, so you’ll know where to start.
- Consider the obstacles that prevent you from getting that job. For now, it’s the experience. You’ll get that through entry positions. What about education? Do you need certificates? Will you need a graduate degree? If that’s the case, your career plan will include entry positions in combination with studying.
- What positions can lead you to the job of your dreams? How much time will you spend on your first job before you start making progress? It’s important to conduct a research to find out how you can get promotions. Make a list and a timeline.
- Clean Up Your Online Reputation
According to the results of CareerBuilder’s survey, 60% of employers research job candidates through social media networks. The online reputation of a particular candidate makes a huge difference in their decision.
It’s time to make your Instagram profile private. Delete all compromising Facebook photos and comments. Check what other people can see about you and take control. The tweets are important, too. You don’t want any offensive or silly content there.
- Start a Blog
What’s the best thing a recruiter could find when they google your name? A high-quality blog tackling topics from the specific industry.
Start that blog! If you still don’t have a job, then you have time for it.
Your posts have to be authoritative, 100% unique, and valuable for the target audience.
- Craft the Perfect Resume and Cover Letter
What does a hiring manager see when you apply for a job? A resume/CV and a cover letter.
They don’t know what kind of person you are. They don’t know your qualifications and interests. The job application documents have to give that information to an employer.
If you’re not confident in your resume writing skills, you can always hire a professional service. Just make sure to read the best resume services reviews, so you’ll find the right website for your needs.
- Create the Perfect LinkedIn Profile
Your LinkedIn profile tells a story to hiring managers. If the profile is good enough and you make plenty of contacts, you’ll be getting proposals without even sending applications.
According to the Jobvite Recruiter Nation Report 2016, 87% recruiters find Linkedin to be the most effective tool for vetting candidates during the hiring process. That’s how important this network is.
- Your profile must be complete.
- Don’t feature a selfie as the profile photo. You need a professional-looking headshot.
- Connect with the right people. The most effective job seekers have robust networks. That’s what LinkedIn is all about: networking.
- The content featured on your LinkedIn profile has to be good. The headline, in particular, is what gets a recruiter’s attention. Make sure there are no grammar or spelling errors throughout your page.
- Work on Your Self-Confidence
Chances are, you’ll face few disappointments on the way to your first job. Not many hiring managers will call for interviews. With this competition, it’s hard to get noticed. You must not let that affect your self-confidence.
You deserve a job. You will get it. Just keep applying to relevant ads. Until the moment you get the job, you have time for self-improvement. Work on new skills, take online courses, and volunteer. You’ll make your resume look better, but you’ll also feel more confident when you know more stuff.
- Stay on Track
This isn’t about getting any job. Building a career is something different.
You’ll need to set some standards. If possible, don’t accept any job, no matter what it is, just to pay the bills. If you do get such a job, make it temporary and keep looking for a relevant one.
A brilliant career doesn’t come easily. It’s a journey that leads you to the position you’ve envisioned. Hopefully, you’ll do the 7 things listed above and you’ll get there.
All views and opinions of guest authors are theirs alone and are not representative of the views of Petersons.com or its parent company Nelnet.