For many, applying to jobs and internships can be time-consuming and frustrating. With a little strategy, however, the application process can become much less stressful – and much more productive.
Here are some quick tips for making the job/intern application process work for you:
Get your resume reviewed – Your resume is a tool to get you to an interview, so it needs to be as effective as possible. Even if you feel it’s strong, make an appointment with Career Development to have someone look it over. The last thing you need is to make a bad impression with a recruiter or submit something that doesn’t represent your skills and experience well!
Network with recruiters/alums – Companies don’t hire names, they hire people they trust, believe in, and like. The application process allows recruiters to turn names into 3-dimensional people – so why wait to get to the good part? By building relationships with recruiters and alumni at your target employer, you can demonstrate your qualities quicker and give yourself an edge over the faceless candidates who just submit their resumes. If you have someone on the inside advocating for you, your chances of getting interviewed and hired dramatically improve. Try to do this before you apply and be careful to remember that everyone you network with is a person, not a means to an end.
Mass apply – Submitting the same resume to tons of employers is a recipe for rejection. No two jobs are identical, so failing to tailor your bullet points and cover letter to match the job description’s skills/competencies hurts your chances. Also, applying to 50+ positions may sound like you’re increasing your odds of success, but you’re actually lowering the quality of your applications and chances of fit. It’s better to spend more time pursuing a handful of opportunities that really match what you and the employer are looking for than to waste your efforts on jobs that you don’t really want and don’t play to your strengths.
Ignore LinkedIn – Not only is LinkedIn your digital resume, it’s also a great tool for showcasing your portfolio, connecting with alumni in fields and at companies you’re interested in, and sourcing jobs. Make sure your LinkedIn page is up-to-date with your recent experiences and accomplishments and don’t forget to interact with people you follow.
These tips are a good start to more successful applications. For personalized advice and help with everything from resumes to salary negotiations, set up an appointment with Career Development using Handshake.