2020 has dramatically changed the rules of the job market. For graduates entering 2021, the new rules are being written as we speak. As companies are trying to figure out their sustenance, recruiters themselves are looking to keep their jobs.
It is more important than ever to be informed, creative, and be strategic in your job application. With some work from your side, you can make sure that the pandemic isn’t the only thing that defines your job search. Here are some tips on how you can find your dream job as a graduate in 2021.
1. Identify All the Potential Careers
Passion is a good thing – it will help you steer your career in the right direction with a goal at the end of the line. However, that doesn’t mean your first employment has to tick all the boxes of your perfect job.
Considering the current job market, you might have to prioritize finding something rather than finding your dream job. On the bright side, being new to the market gives you the flexibility to choose the career you want.
Several industries saw themselves thriving during the pandemic, including online entertainment, fitness, medical research, public relations, and marketing. The hiring is still active in these sectors. With a bit of research, you will be able to find a job that aligns with your future career goals.
2. Find Your Unique Strength
This might not be the ideal time for you to pitch yourself as a quick learner of anything and everything. Companies are looking for graduates who are clear and specific about what they can bring to the table.
People cannot afford to be generalists right now. You should know what your superpower is and feed it to the resume builder as your core skill. Know what value you can offer a firm, and make sure that you emphasize it the most.
Identify your unique strength and make it reflect on your resume. For example, if you have a talent for explaining information to others in a way that makes them want to know more and take whatever it is that you’re offering, then take a look at sales jobs. You should also ensure that your personality shines through in all aspects of your application so that hiring managers will see you as an ideal candidate. Using your natural strengths to make yourself more attractive to hiring managers will also help you stand out from the competition and ensure that you land whatever it is you’re after.
3. Hack the Code to the Perfect Resume
You might have heard numerous times how you have to dress for the job you want or tailor your resume to it. But after the first two tries, you might be thinking that it is too much work and stick to a standard pattern.
However, there are tricks to ensure that even a generalized resume can help you beat an application tracking system. One way is to get professional help from an online resume writer service or a career advice expert. They will craft you a winning resume highlighting your qualification and make you look attractive to the recruiter.
If you would rather take the reins yourself, then hop on to a job site or LinkedIn and find five job roles that offer similar positions. Look for commonalities in their job description to note the keywords that should be reflected on your resume.
This step is crucial to get past the recruiter’s resume scanning software and land an interview.
4. Tailor Your Pitch
You might be able to generalize the resume to an extent, but you still need to tailor your cover letter to the job. Hiring managers want to see that you are familiar with the company, their brand, work, and philosophy. In other words, you have to tell them why you want to work with the company and why you will be a good fit for the firm.
5. Network With a Purpose
It is one of the best times for you to investigate the company you are applying for. People have more time on their hands and might be ready to give you a part of it. You can always reach out to people other than in the HR department. You can send an email with something like seeking their guidance or perspective on the industry, even if they are not hiring at the moment.
This approach is likely to open up more opportunities. Keep track of whom you are contacting, and send them a follow-up thanking them for their time.
Social media and virtual events are some of the best ways to tap into professional networks. Moreover, if possible, be succinct about what you want. The more specific you are, the better the person can help you. You can suggest that you are not only looking for job openings but also for any advice they are willing to share.
- Invest in Learning
Job hunting in 2021 can be long and strenuous. It might take you a few months to find the right opportunity. However, you also want to show that you have used the time effectively to update your skill set and keep your pace with the market. You have to optimize your learning, which will help you not lose track or get demotivated.
As a fresh graduate, you might be tempted to take jobs that offer you the most money. But you should also consider how much career progress you will have at the position or what you could learn at the job.
The early phase is the best time for you to acquire skills and gain experience that will compound over the long.
If you find it challenging to land a job, do not hesitate to look for internships or apprenticeships. You might have to sacrifice huge earnings in the short-term, but you will undoubtedly reap the benefits in the future.
As challenging as it might be, you have to stay proactive during your job search. Make sure that you dedicate a couple of hours every day to job search, networking, and polishing your applications. Also, be proactive in maintaining a healthy attitude, and daily routines to keep your spirits up.
Do not hesitate to tap into the career resources provided by a reputable university like DeVry University. University professors and career offices could introduce you to their networks and get you leads in several ways.