Posted by: Rachel Erickson, OSU Senior and Career Services Career Assistant

Let’s face it, finding a job can be a full time job.  If you are anything like me, the process can seem overwhelming.  While the process will never be exactly the same for everyone, it is important to break down the steps you can take so your job search ends successfully.  One of the best things you can do is take a little time out every day to work on one job search task.  This will keep that overwhelming feeling from getting any worse.

Step One: Get to Know Yourself

Consider the experiences you have had that have been enjoyable for you.  Also, consider your preferences in terms of environment, location, and working as a team member or independently.  Group your 4 major strengths into categories you can specifically identify and give examples of.

Career Services offers the MBTI, Strong, and Discover career assessments that might help you identify some of the things you find most enjoyable.

Step Two: Know Where You Want to Work

Consider the classes you have enjoyed, the information you learned, and what industries they apply to.  Look at your past work history, internships, and volunteer experience—what did you enjoy doing most?  Research the possibilities that exist for recent college graduates in those industries.   Do an informational interview with someone in a career you think you would enjoy.  Ask the person specifics about their job, including what they like most and what they do not like.  Research different industries and companies you are interested in.

Step Three: Get Ready for the Search

Start preparing your resumes, personal statements, cover letters, portfolios and your 30 second informational speech.  I have found it most helpful to create one long resume, and then create a one page resume where I can copy and paste relevant information.  This way you can tailor the resume you send for each position.  Compile a list of networks you can use in your job search.  Make a professional voice message on your phone and make sure you have a professional email address.  Also, make sure you have appropriate attire for interviewing.

Step Four: Start Searching

Make a schedule of your search activities.  Search all resources available.  Consider making a list or excel sheet of positions you qualify for, when you sent your resume or application, and when you plan on following up with the employer.  Consider targeting specific employers and occupations you are interested in, even if they don’t have jobs posted online.  Personalized letters get more attention from employers and show your initiative.

Good luck on your job search and do not forget to use Career Services when you need help!