How and When to Apply to Your First Full-Time Job

As a senior in college, it’s never too early to start the process of searching for full-time opportunities. Some industries, like investment banking, accounting and consulting are recognized as early recruiters, but regardless of the field you’re looking to secure a full-time position in post graduation, beginning the job search process as early as possible is essential to success upon graduation.

It’s not uncommon for the recruiting process to take several months and, with entry-level positions, can start as early as the beginning of the academic year.

Connecting with hiring managers via LinkedIn, company career pages and networking events should be on student radars as early as the first semester of senior year. Hiring managers are aware that with the majority of entry-level jobs, candidates won’t be available to work until January or June, but that doesn’t delay the hiring process in the preceding months. The more connections that you’re able to establish as a student, the higher the likelihood of finding a strong fit and securing an opportunity that will launch you into your ideal career direction.

Whether you’re fresh out of college or still in the midst of senior year, there are many opportunities you can leverage as a student or recent graduate to improve your chances of successfully landing a full-time position as soon as possible.

Be Active on LinkedIn

Make sure your LinkedIn profile is updated with a summary, cover photo, any relatable work samples, and a headline stating your student/graduate status and career goal. Once your profile is complete, start following companies of interest and connecting with the hiring managers. Not only does LinkedIn have a job board, companies regularly post job opportunities as status updates and news articles that will keep you informed. Don’t be afraid to contact recruiters and introduce yourself to express interest in the company with an attached copy of your resume. Whether there are any current entry-level openings or not, establishing a connection early on could help you stand out amongst other candidates in the future.

Join a Professional Organization

The benefits of being active in a professional organization are many: not only will they connect you to like-minded individuals, provide networking opportunities, real world professional experience and contribute to overall career development, it will enhance your resume by displaying dedication to your desired field, which will help you stand out amongst equally qualified competitors who don’t share the same experience.

Become a PathMatch client

Approaching college graduation is an exhilarating, yet nerve-wracking time in life. Earning a degree is a major life accomplishment with the potential to provide endless opportunities with the right amount of ambition and initiative. However, starting your path underemployed or in an unrelated field has the potential to derail long-term career goals. Becoming a PathMatch client as a college student can provide clear direction, personalized job matching, and help you develop the confidence and skill that can’t be taught in a classroom.

To make our process easier, we now are offering a PathMatch app that will give you all the same personalized help that's rolled into the convenience of always being right at your fingers. Find your perfect first full-time job (and every job after) by downloading the app today!