You’ve Earned the Degree, Now What? How to be Fearless in the Job Search as a New Graduate

College graduation is undeniably one of the most exciting times in a student’s life. Years of effort, studying and often late nights have resulted in a lifelong accomplishment that will propel you toward the dream future you’ve worked tirelessly for. However, after the celebratory festivities end and reality sets in, the pressure to apply that degree in the most constructive way possible can become a stress factor for many as the frustration of securing a worthwhile position becomes increasingly competitive.

It takes the average college graduate six months to secure employment after graduation.

Unfortunately, many recent graduates that do secure jobs immediately are underemployed and take positions that don’t require their hard-earned degree. With minimal professional experience outside of education and internships, promoting yourself in a cover letter and resume in a way that proves your worth to the hiring team at your ideal company takes time and consideration. Understandably, as an educated graduate eager to land that first full-time position, the application process can be intimidating - but it doesn’t need to be. Fortunately, the job search process doesn’t have to be overwhelming when you have a clear strategy and take full advantage of the opportunities available.

The good news?

In 2019, new college graduates enjoy the best job market in years with more offers and better salaries. (www.CNBC.com)

With an abundance of online resources and an increasing number of job openings, there are many ways to maximize opportunity, simplify the job search process and adjust your perspective throughout the job search. Here’s how:

Utilize Online Resources

There are more digital platforms and guides available than ever before, so take advantage of as many online resources as possible. Job boards such as Indeed, Monster, Glassdoor, LinkedIn, and CareerBuilder post new opportunities daily and allow job-seekers to upload their resume to be discovered by recruiters. Take advantage of social media to follow thought leaders and bloggers in your professional niche to stay atop of trends and professional development. Use the interim between graduation and full-time employment to develop and learn as much as possible about your desired field.

Take Advantage of Online Courses

Online courses and certifications are more accessible than ever and provide a valuable supplement to your degree. Websites like Skillshare, Lynda, and countless free skill based YouTube videos can boost your resume, helping you stand out from the competition and increase your confidence throughout the interview process.

Send Customized Resumes Everyday

Often, new graduates and job-seekers become frustrated with the job search because of an underwhelming response rate. The reality is, forwarding a generic resume and cover letter to a handful of companies per week is unlikely to result in many interviews, let alone a job offer.

Each job offer posted online attracts hundreds of applicants, on average.

This can be discouraging, especially when you discover your dream job, only to realize it comes with a wealth of competition. In this case, do the research to find a hiring manager you can contact directly to further express your interest in the company and why it resonates with your specific goals and interests. Meanwhile, it’s critical to keep your horizons broad and strive to send out a minimum of 5 customized applications per day.

Start Somewhere

Entry-level positions may not be the ideal career that you spent years studying for, but getting your foot in the door can provide invaluable experience with the potential for promotion when a steady work ethic a desire to learn are displayed. While some aspects of an entry-level job description can appear menial, ambitious employees have the opportunity to learn from other departments, acquire side projects, master new skills and accelerate their advancement within the company.

Are you a recent graduate looking to advance your career or a student looking to launch yours? We’re here to help! Our flexible plans offer varying levels of support and guidance for students and recent grads including in-depth career matching & analysis, interview prep, customized internship & job matching, and more.

Want all this help to fit in your pocket for on-the-go resources? Download our PathMatch app today!