By Lexie Brada
Entry-level job search can be a bit of a challenge. You want something that will give you the experience you need to advance your career, but you don't want to get stuck in a dead-end position. How can you find the right entry-level job? And how can you assure you’ll get one? For many people, the entry-level job search can feel like a never-ending process. You submit your resume to dozens of companies, only to receive crickets in response. Here are PathMath’s best tips to finding the job that will open doorways and start your journey on your professional career.
Figure Out Your Path
First, take some time to assess your skills and interests. This is important to assure that you’re spending your valuable time applying for jobs that (1) you have a better chance of getting and (2) you’ll also enjoy working for.
What are you good at? What do you enjoy doing? Once you have a better idea of what you're looking for, you can start to narrow your search. Job searching can take a lot of energy, so don’t use the ‘throw spaghetti at the wall and see what sticks’ method, but instead be methodical and specific about what you apply to.
It doesn’t have to be in your college major, but that certainly can help.
If you’re not sure at all what sort of job you’re looking for, no fear! We have compiled a list of questions to ask yourself to help decide and narrow down your field of search. You can read ‘How to Find the Right Job For You- Part 1’ on our blog.
Clean Up Your Resume
Take a look at your resume and make sure it's up to date. Now that you’ve figured out what you want to do with your career, be sure that your resume reflects that. It’s a good idea to re-write your resume and tweak it each time to align with what a position is looking for.
For example, if a job says that they want someone detail-oriented that knows HTML and you feel like you fit into both of those categories, make sure that’s clear on the resume you send them! You don’t need to remake the wheel every single time you apply for a job (that sounds like a lot of time you could be using for other endeavors) but adjusting keywords for describing previous jobs differently can really make or break whether or not you’ll get a call back. So, be sure to highlight your relevant skills and experience, and be sure to proofread carefully for any typos or grammatical errors.
If you haven’t ever done a resume or you feel like your current resume could use a little work, we have you covered with tips and tricks to make sure your post-college resume is perfect.
Network, Network, Network!
Next, don't be afraid to network. Talk to friends, family, and colleagues to see if they know of any openings that might be a good fit for you. You never know where your next lead will come from.
When it comes to networking on a wider-scale, take some time exploring sites like LinkedIn and sending messages to people in roles that you want to be in one day, or reach out to employees at companies you’d like to work for. Having some sort of connection, such as the same college, is a great way to open up a line of communication, but anything will do.
When networking and sending cold-call emails, always be friendly, professional, and respectful.
Here’s a template you can use and adjust for this purpose. Try to make it feel personal to the person you’re sending it to, so it doesn’t feel like a copy-and-paste (even if it is!)
Hi, (name of employee),
I’ve been following your work at (company) and I really admire (blank). I am very interested in working as a (job title) and I would love to connect!
Never expect that connecting with an employee will lead to a job offer. They may vouch for you if you’re applying to an open position, or you might just gain some great insights into a specific company or position. Either way, building this network will be valuable for the current job-search and future!
Social Media Search
Fourth, use social media to your advantage. As stated previously, LinkedIn is a great resource for finding entry-level jobs. With the advent of social media and companies growing their presence, don’t forget there are a lot of other places to find out about new openings; from TikTok to Twitter to Instagram and Facebook, companies may post career opportunities that you don’t want to miss. Follow companies that interest you and see if they have any open positions.
“Back In My Day” Job Searching, Too!
Fifth, don't forget about traditional job search methods like online job boards and newspapers. While these may not be the most exciting or efficient ways to find a job, they can still yield some results that you may have never considered.
Remember to diversify where you search and how you search and you’ll find the perfect fit for you eventually.
Professional Job Search Service
Finally, consider using a professional job search service. They can help you target specific entry-level jobs that match your qualifications and interests. And they'll also provide support and guidance throughout the entire process, from resume writing, to interviewing.
While there are plenty of great services out there, PathMatch has a history of aiding many students through the sometimes scary process of finding their first jobs and setting them up for success down the line. You can download the PathMatch app and start your process of finding the job that was perfectly made for you!
Want all this help to fit in your pocket for on-the-go resources? Download our PathMatch app today!