Employment Search Strategies

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Career Exploration and Development
261 Schwartz Center

Where to Look for a Position

Career Exploration and Development’s Flash @ Work
Upload a resume and apply for internship postings listed throughout the year by local, national and international employers.

Networking/Informational Interviewing/Directly Contacting Employers
It’s important to be aware of your own personal network and start early to expand your connections. Informational interviewing involves actually meeting with people in your chosen field, as well as prospective employers, and interviewing them to gather information about what they do and their recommendations for how you can break into your desired career field. Follow up with direct contacts in the organization that have the ability to hire you. This is often not the personnel manager, but the manager of the department in which you would work. Utilize your networks to reach out for an informational interview. Even if there are no opportunities now, ask for other leads and follow up.

Career Fairs/On-Campus Interviews
Hundreds of employers schedule campus visits each year seeking students in a wide variety of career fields, although some employers do not use this service as a recruiting method, and you will need to contact them directly. Employers attend CED’s annual Fall and Spring Internship, Co-op and Career Fairs, and also schedule interviews in the center’s office, located in 261 Schwartz Center.

Faculty Contacts
Faculty often have contacts in your field of interest. Be sure to use your professors as part of your network.

Online Postings and Employer Web Sites
There are excellent sites on the internet that can assist you with your job search. Visit www.kent.edu/career to search sites by career field and industry. Remember, many organizations now accept applications directly at the organization’s website.

Third-Party Recruiters/Employment Agencies
These are private agencies that refer applicants to jobs listed with their agency. They typically charge a fee to either the employer or the applicant. Many specialize in certain categories of employment. You should research the reputation of the agency and be clear about their conditions and policies for placement before choosing to sign with a third-party recruiter/employment agency.

Social Networking Sites
Used in conjunction with job search engines, social networking sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter can help you make connections and build personal branding that will boost your job search.

Mass Mailing/Emailing of Resume
Sending your resume addressed only to the organization or personnel manager is akin to your receipt of bulk mail addressed only to the “occupant.” This is NOT a recommended job search method.

Other Considerations ....

Economic Outlook
Labor market considerations can impact your job search. Read beyond the headlines and get the facts on current conditions and factor them in when choosing job location, employment sector, and the size and type of organization.

Long Distance Job Search
First, thoroughly research the target area. Next, generate leads through networking. Consider subscribing to local newspapers/publications and contact the chamber of commerce to develop leads. Try to schedule trips to the location to permit informational and job interviews. Be careful about relocating to the new area without numerous solid job leads or a “short-term” back-up plan.

Even More Ideas ....

● Talk to temporary personnel agencies ● Consider volunteering to gain experience ● Take a related job, even at a lower level, that may lead to your goal ● Continue your education or obtain specialized training ● Think about self- employment – like writing, consulting or a small business ● Talk with former employers about possible opportunities!

Career & Job Search Readiness Checklist

Use this checklist to track your progress toward being ready to begin your professional job search. You should be able to check the box for each statement below by the time you are ready to begin your search!


□ I have considered what is important to me in my career and life.
□ I understand the need for self-reflection because I realize I am my own best resource in the career planning process.
□ I have identified my strongest abilities and skills.
□ I am aware of my weaknesses.
□ I have identified the personal values that define the ways I find purpose and meaning.
□ I have identified my interests.
□ I can describe my preferred work environment.
□ I have thought about the type of lifestyle I want.
□ I can articulate experiences and achievements that clarify a pattern of interests/abilities that are relevant to my career.
□ I have a personal definition of success.

Knowledge of Employers and Careers

□ I have focused my career choices and researched these fields using a variety of current career/employer information.
□ I have conducted an informational interview with at least one person in each of the career fields I am considering.
□ I have sought the wisdom of those I trust to provide input on my career aspirations.
□ I have decided on a career field and have declared a major that is complimentary.
□ I have started to develop a broad list of job titles to research.
□ I have developed a well-defined career objective that focuses my job search on particular organizations/employers.
□ I have participated in internships, extra-curricular, or volunteer activities that relate to my chosen career.
□ I have crafted a career plan to support me in reaching my goal.

Knowledge of Job Search Strategies

□ I can answer an employer's question, "Why should I hire you?" with hard evidence.
□ I know how to network effectively.
□ I have asked individuals to serve as professional references.
□ I have taken advantage of the Career Exploration and Development’s resources.
□ I have written an effective resume and cover letter and asked for expert feedback.
□ I have established a professional online presence through LinkedIn and other social media.
□ I know where to search for jobs targeted to my specific field of interest.
□ I have prepared for job interviews by completing a mock interview.
□ I know how to follow up after a job interview.
□ I know how to write a thank you letter.
□ I know how to negotiate a job offer.