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How to Land Your Dream Job in 10 Steps

Wow, it’s September 1st, time sure does fly! Hope everyone had a great summer and welcome back for the fall semester! Even though school is just starting it’s never to early to start setting up goals and/or thinking about that job that you want after the college years are over. Everyone should always be looking to the future and preparing for that day when you do graduate and are looking for a “real job”.

Graduating from college is an exciting time, but it can also be a time filled with anxiety and uncertainty when you are looking for your first post-college job. Here are 10 tips to help you land the job you have always dreamed of.

  1. Figure out what your dream job is.  You are getting ready to graduate, so you should know what you want to do. But you should also know the company you want to work for and what you want to do there. Do some research and find out what skills you need for the job, and what it will take to sell yourself to the company that you want to work for. Do you just need a job? Or do you have time to think about what you want to do?  Are you willing to take an entry level job doing something you don’t like to get your foot in the door?
  2. Your network is essential.  You have spent a long time studying your field, and you should have a good list of contacts.  Everyone from recruiters and professors to fellow classmates are potential sources to help you in your job search.
  3. Send in your application. Once you know the companies you want to work for and the type of job you want, send in an application.  Most applications are sent electronically and require you to fill out profiles or answer questions to give the company an idea of your personality type.  Make sure you don’t leave the answers to surveys and profiles blank, because many companies discard applications without this information. Be sure your application is free of typos and has correct dates and salary information if that is required.
  4. Your cover letter is an essential piece of your application.  This is where you tell your dream company why they should hire you.  Be sure to state the company name, address, and hiring manager’s name on the cover letter.  If you don’t have the hiring manager’s name, call the company and ask for it and be sure to spell it correctly. Include your contact information and make sure your email address and phone number is correct.
  5. Your resume is where you list all of your skills, experience, education, and any other pertinent information that shows off your talents.  The resume is usually broken out into headings that are clear sections and easy for someone to glance over and get an idea of your past working history. You need to include dates along with your work experience, and instead of a running list of your duties, list your achievements and major projects you worked on. This gives potential employers a clear picture of the skills and tasks you have done in the past. Find out the required qualifications for the job you want, and make sure you address those specific qualifications in your resume.  At larger companies, job screenings are done by machine and target the key words in the job description and job listing so your resume needs to have those keywords in it.
  6. The phone Interview is the first step to getting the job you want.  If a recruiter calls you for an on-the-spot phone interview and you are distracted and don’t feel you can give your best answers, politely ask them if you can call them back.  This is the company’s first impression of you, and if you aren’t prepared it could cost you the job.
  7. In-person interview. Now that you’ve made it through the resume screening and possibly a phone interview, you are that much closer to your dream job.  Don’t go into an interview unprepared.  Do some research on the company, and be prepared to tell them why you want to work there. Knowing some facts about the company such as awards they have received, common practices and industry buzz words are all good things to bring to your interview.  Don’t forget a copy of your resume and references just in case you are asked for it, and a portfolio of projects you have worked on is also a good idea if applicable.
  8. Questions to ask at the interview. Come up with at least a couple of questions about the job or company you are interviewing with.  A question or two makes you sound knowledgeable and interested.
  9. ASK FOR THE JOB! During your interview let the interviewer know that you are very interested in the job, and ask them to hire you.  This doesn’t have to be blatant, you can say something like, “Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you about the position.” Asking for the job lets the interviewer know that you are serious about the job.
  10. Thank you. Don’t forget to thank the interviewer for their time, and send an email or a note in the mail telling them thank you and that you look forward to speaking with them soon. Try and add something personal that took place in the interview, such as other people you met with, or something that you liked about the office as you walked through. Little touches are what make the difference in being chosen for the job.

Now you know how to land that dream job.  Start sending out applications today, and get ready to make the transition from student to employee.

Post written by: Noah @


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