New Grads: Tips To Get Job Ready

School’s out for the summer! For some of you that’s a bummer, I know. However, it doesn’t have to be. This can be the most exciting time, world of possibilities await! While you may be trading in the quad for city streets or class in your pjs for an office job in a suit, pep yourself up to give it all you got in your first step in your career.

The team at Clarity have all been new grads at one point and we work with new grads every year to get their feet in door with great companies to work with! We know how tough the transition can be and are well equipped to help set you up for career success.

For those of you who haven’t secured a job yet or are not quite sure where to start, here are a few tips and tricks to land that dream job or at least get working ASAP.

Personal brand prep: This process should already be well under way and if it’s not, start now! This is your first step to setting yourself up for success in finding the best matched job – when you are putting out a clear message on who you are and what you want, it will be much easier to network, apply, and ultimately get your foot in the door. If you don’t know what you want, that’s ok too, at least start representing who you are. Here is your checklist:

  • Update your resume and print: This is just a part of your personal branding story and one that is still required by most organizations. Make sure to be truthful and tailor it to the job you are applying to. Click here for additional tips from our very own, Keagan Gros.
  • Update your LinkedIn profile: The professional networking site provides an opportunity to get warm intros and maintain a living digital resume. Recruiters always check a LinkedIn profile before calling, it’s crucial to not only have a presence, but to have the right etiquette. Here are additional tips to keep in mind.
  • Create a personal website: Creating and maintaining a personal website in addition to your LinkedIn profile and resume will give potential employers a sense of your personality and voice. If done right, a personal site can set you apart, it shows you have creativity and if you add meaningful content, it shows you have a subject matter expertise/passion. Check out resources like Squarespace, WordPress, Wix, and About.me.
  • Clean up your social media: Recruiters dig deep and want to ensure whoever they hire can represent the company well! It’s time to delete those fun party pics from college – they can inevitably lose you your dream job. You also need to be careful once you get a job, poor etiquette on social media can get you fired.

Job search: Once you are prepped and ready to go it’s time to showcase your skills and hard work in a strategic and tactful way. Here are some tips to get you started:

  • Identify target companies: Create a spreadsheet of 20 top companies you want to work for and list any jobs you see that you are interested in as well as who you may have connections with. Update this as you search and apply so you stay focused and on track.
  • Reach out: Start to reach out to people you may know at your target companies and if you don’t know anyone see if there is a friend of a friend that can connect you. If that’s not an option, you can reach out cold.  There is a right and wrong way to reaching out to someone for an intro or going in completely cold. The bottom line: don’t make it sound like you are desperate for a job, it’s about creating meaningful connections and building relationships.
  • Sign up with a reputable recruiting agency: Agencies like Clarity can help you get access to hundreds of great, fully vetted companies as well as give you the true inside scoop. If you’re not having luck finding something permanent, it’s beneficial to get started working as a temp to build your resume and to get your foot in the door. Sometimes a short term temp gig can lead to something perm! At the very least temping provides a networking opportunity. Apply to see if you too can get your foot in the door at a great company!
  • Physically network: Get out there physically to networking events or industry groups of interest. Meeting people in person with similar interests makes it easier to make warmer intros and a lasting impression. Our Business Development Manager Keilly Cutler, who attends endless networking events and is a pro at making meaningful connections, shares her advice on how to network with the best of them. 
  • Consider starting in an assistant role: This will give you broad exposure to a company as a whole where you can decide what path you want to take for the long term. Most career paths on the business side in creative companies start in some type of support role. Clarity candidates have proven that starting in a role like this can help lay the foundation for long term career success down the road because of the broad exposure it provides.
  • Land and nail the interview: Once you land the interview, you need to nail it! The market is super competitive right now so you need to bring your A-game. Our Temp Team Division Manager, Colleen Robson, who preps candidates every day for interviews, provides a few tips on how to do so.

On the job: Your hard work during the search has paid off and you are now about to embark on a new chapter in your life as a working professional. Here are a few things to keep in mind to ensure you knock it out of the park and make a great impression:

  • Be reliable: This sounds simple, but it’s one of the most important qualities you must demonstrate on the job. You need to show up early or on time, be able to manage expectations, and prove you are trustworthy. Showing up late is unacceptable.
  • Have a can-do attitude: Never be above anything, this is your first job, everyone has to put in a bit of grunt work in the beginning. Be proactive and always willing to take on whatever comes your way – employers value this.
  • Demonstrate a strong work ethic: Give it your all and if you make a mistake, own up to it and never repeat the same mistake again. Missing a question on a test only affects you, at a job it affects everyone – make sure to double check your work.
  • Make the most of the opportunity: Soak up as much knowledge as you can on the job. Get to know your coworkers, I can guarantee you will learn something new everyday. People are your biggest asset – connect and build relationships with others.

While it may seem scary searching for or starting a new job upon graduation, just remember, everyone at one time went through this, it’s now your turn! Give yourself all the opportunity in the world to make a meaningful first step to set yourself up for a long lasting career. And remember, you can always make a change if you realize a certain career isn’t right for you, nothing is set in stone. This is your life, make of it what you want, the world is truly your oyster!

Submit your resume, let’s see how the experts at Clarity can help guide you in your search!