Conducting Your Job Search
In this economy, it is essential to do more than just post your resume on Monster or attend a career fair once a year. Looking for a job is a full time job in itself. We encourage you to identify a plan of action and allow yourself reasonable time (between 4-6 months) to find a job. Stay on top of your job search and find the best fit for you and your unique skills and interests!
- You may view and print a Job Search Readiness Checklist to get you started. We recommend that you review these resources before making an appointment to meet with a career counselor.
- Jobweb.com’s How You Fit into the Tight Job Market
Tips for Successful Job Searching in a Down Economy
1. Know what you have to offer and how to communicate it clearly. Remember: employers are looking for people who can “sell” themselves. Be sure that you include transferrable skills in your cover letter, resume, and talk about them on the interview. You should be able to communicate what you have done in the workplace that makes you stand out from the crowd.
2. Do your research. Make it your job to know everything about your companies of interest as well as current news and legislation that affect your field. This information will come in handy when interviewing, networking, and knowing where to look for jobs.
3. Get involved. Just because you are unemployed doesn’t mean you have to sit at home and do nothing. Volunteer in your field or in the community, join professional and alumni associations, and attend events and conferences. Get your name out into the field to build relationships with other professionals. Also sign up on linkedin.com to search for these contacts and to join online “groups.”
4. Evaluate your (virtual) image. Do an exhaustive inventory of all of your online activity. Get rid of any photos or online connections to people and things that may make employers question your character and integrity. Also “Google” yourself to see what comes up. Trust us, they do look.
5. Keep in touch. Networking is the number one way to get a job.Contact your network of former colleagues, supervisors, friends, family, etc. and let them know about your current job search. Conduct informational interviews with other professionals you meet, and keep in touch with them over the following weeks. Don’t ever ask for a job, but be willing to provide your resume and explanation about what you are looking for in a job if asked. For further help in developing your networking skills and on how to conduct informational interviews, view our interactive webshops on the Online Workshops and Media page or scroll to the bottom of this page for more information.
6. Give what you get. Once you land the job, don’t stop volunteering or communicating with your network and new contacts within the profession. Send thank you cards to those who helped you out during your job search, and go out of your way to help people in your similar situation. Contact Career Services and offer to participate in presentations and workshops to share your success with other students and alumni. You never know when you will need help again!
Conducting informational interviews is the best way to begin building a network of professional contacts, particularly with alumni of University of La Verne. Remember that the purpose of an informational interview is to ask for professional advice, not a job. You will want to ask open-ended questions about the person’s experiences in their field of expertise and suggestions on how you can best prepare for your career.
Click HERE to navigate to our Networking and informational interviews page to view two interactive webshops on how to network and how to identify your networking style. You may also click on the links below for further networking tips.
Job Search WebsitesGovernment Positions for Students