The Job Search Process

Your ultimate goal is your new job. Yet there will be several steps of completion required along the path to this goal. Following are the basic steps in the job search process:

  • Establish your career objective
    • Self-assessment
      • Personality
      • Aptitude
      • Interests
      • Values
      • Identify personal skills and abilities
    • Career exploration
      • Researching career types
      • Researching industries
      • Researching geographic locations
      • Understanding the career requirements
    • Career preparation
      • Academic - major, classes, projects
      • Extracurricular - activities, clubs, leadership, sports
      • Experience - work, internships, volunteering
  • Prepare job search tools
    • Resume
    • Cover letter
    • References, letters of recommendation
  • Find hiring companies
    • Identify on-campus employers
      • On-campus interviews
      • On-campus job fairs
    • Identify off-campus employers
      • Building and activating a career network
      • Utilizing employer research materials
      • Off-campus job fairs
      • Prospecting and following up on referral leads
  • Secure the interview
    • Make contact
    • Request and confirm interview
  • Interview
    • Prepare for the interview
    • On-campus interviewing
    • Phone interviewing
    • Company-site interviewing
  • Offer
    • Post-interview follow-up
    • Job offer negotiation
    • Accept and begin new job!

Seems simple enough, right? Just follow the yellow brick road to job search success. Unfortunately, what the above process flow does not show is the iterative nature of the job search process. There will be failures along the way and you will be repeating many of the steps for each employer you are pursuing. And, being a linear process, it is subject to time and timing. That is, you may find yourself at square one with Employer #1 at the same time you complete the process and have an offer in hand from Employer #2. Worse things can happen in your job search. But this type of timing situation does provide a dilemma of its own. Overall, you should seek to master each step of the process so that each employer interview eventually results in a job offer, so that you can choose where you want to work, instead of the other way around. Mastering the job search process will result not only in a job offer, but will also result in the right job for you. This Web site is not just about getting a job. It is about getting the right job.

You should also notice that the above process very closely mirrors the sequence of information at this Web site. And for good reason. This Web site is designed to guide you through the steps of the job search process. It will provide you with the information you need (and then some) for each step in the job search process.


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