The job hunt is one of the biggest challenges in our lifetime. The competition has persisted through different eras, generations, and amongst countries. Nevertheless, strategies to approach a possible opportunity and network have evolved, and it is crucial to be aware of the changes to go with the flow.
I have switched up to two full-time jobs post-graduation. Before this, I worked a couple of part-time jobs. Either of them was not an easy catch. Although I am not an ivy league graduate, I do hold the experiences that qualify me to perform pretty cool projects at esteemed institutes in my field of biomedical research.
There was a time when A-grade graduates would be hired right-on spot, without even going through an interview process. However, it does not work that way 98% of the time. And it is not magic for the 2% either. If today someone receives an offer letter before graduation, that person has done her/his homework very well.
Nevertheless, it is also challenging to find the exact match, where the salary meets the needs; the assignment is exciting as well as the co-workers are amazing. However, this does not mean it is impossible to find one.
Networking does not mean knowing people alone. Besides, it involves gaining facts regarding the field you want to work on and how many possible opportunities might be in the market at present.
Many amongst us love to study a particular subject; however, it is crucial to know whether our topic of interest will provide us with the appropriate skills that are blooming in the current market.
Knowing the market and where we stand is a critical aspect while hunting for jobs. Job postings are pretty clear and straight forward these days. They ask for precisely what they seek from the candidates. To become the best fit, we need to realize and evaluate ourselves regarding the same.
Moreover, it is essential to have a profile on LinkedIn and Facebook. I meet a lot of people who complain about not being approached by recruiters or potential hiring managers. And many of them do not actively participate in their LinkedIn profiles.
Understand that lifestyle evolves every year, and with the advent of social media, marketing ourselves online is the principal source to reach the top of the pool. Socializing, growing contacts, and demonstrating our involvement in different activities are some of the ideal ways to attract more views.
Adding recruiters and following suitable organizations, groups, and even individuals in our field of interest are one of the best ways to introduce ourselves to the job market.
Patience and Constant Effort
Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can. ~ Buddha
Always breathe. Our world population is 7.7 billion, and there are at least 1000 recognized universities. So, think about the number of graduates every year and also study the ratio of available job positions for competition.
It is not worth sitting back, assuming, “ I am THE ONE!” Maybe I am. But, I will have to prove myself for sure.
Along with breathing, it is essential to have patience. Keep in mind that companies and recruiters are going through hundreds of resumes to select a niche of significant matches. Hence, things will take time to follow-up. Moreover, when we keep ourselves calm, we are aware of our surroundings.
Many times, when I get too excited and desperate about my situation, I become blind to potential opportunities. Because I am so focused on one door, I tend to disregard other scopes. A lot of times, multiple interview sessions open up new doors to better possibilities.
Additionally, one needs to put in constant effort towards her/his job application. Which requires reducing our ego and emailing every valuable contact we might have generated over the years, obviously related to our job hunt.
Email the recruiters/hiring managers soon after the interview sessions — follow-up after a week or two, regarding the status of the job application. We might receive negative feedback. However, this habit ensures two things- first, how serious we are about our employment, and second, how interested we are with the project and the organization we are willing to join.
Likewise, when we keep in touch with people we conversate with and include them in our network on LinkedIn and Facebook, we open up a future possibility that might come 2–4 years from now. Because even if we did not get the job offer, yet we made a pretty good impression with them, they will help you out later.
The constant effort also involves ceaselessly applying to various job postings: not just any random posts, but the ones where the description matches your skill sets. We cannot be picky. Strive for the top-notch organizations, but never ignore the small start-ups and not so good organizations.
Apply through LinkedIn and immediately connect with the job poster. Be smart about the job posting date. If the posting date was 2/3 months ago, most likely, the company has already selected their favorite candidates. Apply through Glassdoor, then follow-up using the information of the recruiter/hiring manager provided in the description.
The Resume Game
Writing a resume is an art. It requires practice as well as guidance from experienced people. Never cease to share your resume with professors, parents, or friends who already have a job in a similar sector. They know better because they have been there before us.
Try not to get overwhelmed with different styles available online. Every method works; however, it is the content that matters the most.
Modify the resume based on the job description. That does not mean we add qualifications that we do not hold. In the “key-word search,” the possibility for us to be selected increase by tweaking a resume based on the job description.
Nowadays, automated searches assist in browsing through hundreds of applications. Hence, be specific in the resume.
Avoid mentioning too much and unnecessary skills that may not fit the position. Be modest at the same time; give them a little bit extra. The addition needs to be something that, subsequently, we may exploit down the line.
Be Confident Smart and Aware
Never say “yes” to just any offer letter.
Of course, it is the most exciting moment when we receive our first offer letter. However, take time to analyze the team and the people we spoke with in-person at the interview.
Take time to make decisions, because it may require us to relocate, change our set schedules, may or may not have the desired benefits, etc.
Listen to the gut instinct. When we receive a job offer, the ball is in our court.
Screen through at least two job offers to have better comparison and hence, understanding of what we are seeking.