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Searching for a Job? ITU’s Career Services Team Shares Some Suggestions

Whether you’re looking for an internship or you’re a fresh graduate, chances are that the first actions in your job search will involve visiting online job boards or the careers section of top company websites. While these are important first steps, they will not give you access to a large majority of the opportunities that are out there. Why? Because recruiters report that 50% to 80% of all job opportunities are never posted. Often referred to as the “hidden job market”, these positions are filled by word-of-mouth, offering some proof that who you know may well be more important that what you know, at least when it comes to getting your foot in the door for an interview.

Networking and Referrals

One of the most important things job hunters can do at the outset of a job search is to tap into their personal and professional networks. In addition to expanding the possibility of learning about a position that has not been publicly posted, networking can magically rescue your resume from the depths of cyberspace and put it directly in the hands of the hiring manager.

Most of us have gone through the tedious process of entering our personal and professional information over and over again in online applications. However, there’s no guarantee that a recruiter, much less a hiring manager, will ever actually see your application. Talent acquisition software routinely filters out resumes based on select keywords and other criteria.

A referral from a friend or colleague can help you get noticed. You just need to let the people in your professional and social networks know that you’re looking and what you do. LinkedIn is a great resource for networking for your job search.

Remember that networking is a two-way street. The best time to do a favor for someone in your network is before you need their help. Take an interest in the careers of others and don’t be surprised when they reach back to help you.

Networking Events and Career Fairs

While meeting random people and finding common areas of interest might seem awkward at first, it gets easier the more you do it. Networking events are a great way to practice. Did you know that the ITU Toastmasters Club is hosting a speed networking event on April 4th? RSVP today if you want to learn some great networking suggestions and techniques. Attending a Career Fair is a great way to directly meet several recruiters or hiring managers all at one time. You can bypass the entire online application process by sharing your resumes with recruiters or hiring managers directly.

Be Patient and Follow Up

Hunting for jobs is a process that requires patience and persistence. If you’ve emailed a recruiter or a contact and you don’t hear back, be gently persistent and send them a reminder. Excessive follow-up can be counterproductive but some amount of follow-up is definitely recommended.

RSVP for ITU’s Spring Career Fair

Have you registered for ITU’s Spring Career and Internship Fair on April 8, 2016? Registrations are now open! To set up an appointment with a Career Services representative, you can email careerservices@itu.edu. You can also meet a representative during the Career Services drop-in hours from 10 AM to 12 PM on Tuesdays and 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM on Thursdays, outside the ITU Library.