If you are in your senior year in college, this is the time to think about the first job that you would like to pursue once you get out of school. This can set the precedent in the career moves that you will make later in life. This will be your stepping stone, and it is important that you have a good start with the right job. Below are tips on choosing your first job.
- Clear your mind and make a list of all the things that interest you and correlate these to different jobs that are within your physical, mental and educational capability. Include all the skills that you have learned through training, practical experience and past part time jobs as these will come in handy.
- Continue making your list and eliminate those items that do not fit your job requirements. Identify the jobs that you would like to have. Put yourself in different scenarios and see how well you will fare. Do you think you will be able to withstand working in a particular office set up that you imagined? You have to condition your mind to move from a school setting to a corporate setting.
- Make a short list of the companies you think will best suit you and where you can apply your knowledge and abilities. Research these companies and learn their missions and visions, their hiring policies, their products and services to identify the ones where your talents will be best suited.
- Check out the requirements for entry-level positions in each company and look at the job descriptions. Do not worry about a job title at this stage. You should concentrate on what exactly your work will entail when you join a company. You know very well that most entry-level positions for new graduates are in the lower ranks and you will need patience, diligence, dedication and exemplary performance to rise up the corporate ladder. Do you have these traits?
- Look for the benefits and compensation that the company gives to its employees. Some companies only offer standard benefits such as annual paid vacation leaves, sick leaves, annual bonuses, health and medical insurance, pension plan and standard salary. Some companies add other social perks such as travel allowances, car plans, and club memberships outside of the standard employee benefits.
- See if the company has an internship program that will allow you to join the company even if you are still in school. This will be of great advantage to you, because you will already have a feel for what it is like to be working in a corporate setting. See if the internship can also count as probationary employment. You may get shuffled from one department to another, but this is more of an advantage than an inconvenience because this will allow you to find where your true interests lie and make it easy for you to choose which department to join.
- If the company you have chosen does not have an internship program, prepare your resume and send it to at least five potential employers. While waiting for the company’s response, prepare for the interview.
It is not easy to choose your first job, as many choices are open to you. Do your homework; it can take a lot of research to find a job that will complement your interests, your knowledge, abilities and skills and one that will give you the opportunities for career growth.