You’re fresh out of school and now it’s time to look for a job. You have very little or no prior work experience but many jobs require years of prior experience. This is a common problem among college graduates. There are a lot of jobs out there available but many of them require a plethora of experience to apply.
One of the first things you are probably told to do when looking for a job is to look at online job search engines; but every other college graduate is doing the same thing. So what can you do to get the edge in the job hunt for that entry level job? Here are four tips you can use to help you get an entry level job.
Look on Craigslist The Right way
You are wasting your time if you are not putting in the right keywords on Craigslist; it will take you forever to filter out jobs if you aren’t smart about how you are searching on Cragislist. Instead of entering in the job you are looking for, you need to refine your search to just jobs that are specifically catered to those looking for entry-level positions. In order to do that, enter in the position you are looking for but follow it with words like “entry level”, “associate”, “junior” in the search query. It will help narrow down the jobs that you qualify for.
Example, if you are a looking for a database analyst job, this is what you shouldn’t enter in the search bar: database analyst.
Instead, this is what you should enter in the search bar: database analyst “entry level”.
Meetups great for getting connections. However, the key here is to not just to go to general meetups or networking events. You want to go to events that cater to your hobbies or interests. Getting connections and introductions will be a byproduct of the connections you will make with those who share similar interests. And people are more willing to introduce people to their bosses that they know. The reasons meetups work so well for networking is that the people you are connecting with already share similar interests as you—therefore you are more likely to bond with them and become friends. And once you bond with them, they are more likely to introduce you to their bosses. Meetups do take time to build connections though as many meetups meet every month or every other week. But anything worth having takes time.
Look Out For Opportunities At Your School
Your school is a great place to look for potential job leads. Many of the big schools will have their own search engines for job-seekers. In addition, you should also sign up for your department’s e-mail list and the e-mail list of related departments. Oftentimes, they will mail out internship or job opportunities to those on the e-mail list. Lastly, you should check your department’s bulletin; bulletins are always filled with job announcements.
Make Yourself Known to Everyone You Meet
Make t-shirts, business cards, and a website.
Make shirts with your name on it and even advertise that you are looking for a job on the shirt. You will meet dozens if not hundreds of random people per day, and some of them will decision-makers for companies. Employers love funny, creative, and quirky people. There aren’t very many people out there wearing a shirt with their name that tells people they are available for hire. As such, you will very much stand out.
In addition, having such a shirt will allow you to strike up a conversation with a lot of people. And every new connection you make will be beneficial in the job hunt; and you only need one right connection to land the job you want.
In addition, it is also useful to have a business card with a website. The business card can introduce everyone to you and forward them to your website. Your website is your resume and should have links to your portfolio or previous work you have done. Hand out your business card to anyone that will take it. Business cards are extremely cheap to make. There are some deals out there that will print 500 business cards for under $10.
The point is to make as many connections as you can. Some of those connections will become your friends and a few will give you great leads for jobs.
Follow these four tips and I guarantee you will have better luck looking for a job than your classmates. Best of luck to you on your job search.