Early-Career Job Application Advice


More of the millennial generation is college-educated, thus the basement standard for most jobs has risen accordingly. Pay in entry-level jobs is also an issue due to student loan and other forms of debt millennials accrue trying to stay ahead of the masses.

Knowing how and when to apply for a job is just as important as to find an opening. Failure to follow a basic blueprint when applying will leave you spinning your wheels.

Spotlight Relevant Experience.

You have held a variety of part-time and odd jobs, but you do not need to include every single position in your resume.

Hirers are often flooded with applications, thus their resources are finite. Keep it concise by emphasizing only the positions with relevance to the job for which you are applying.

It does not need to be in the same field, so long as the skills applied or learned are applicable to the position you hope to obtain.

Lead with Leadership.

Steven Rothberg, president and founder of CollegeRecruiter.com, said the one thing that stands out on an early-career resume above all else is a leadership role.

If you have experience leading in some capacity, make sure to lead your resume or cover letter with it. This can include heading a volunteer group or even something as simple as spearheading a major class project.

Leadership is not necessarily a learned job trait, so a demonstrated willingness to take charge is attractive to employers.

Don't Apply Just to Apply.

Getting stuck in a career rut happens, either due to unhappiness with your current job or unemployment. Don't let your workplace rut bleed into your application process.

Blanketing prospective employers with resumes may seem like a good idea—the more lures in the water the more potential for bites, after all—but if you're applying for dozens of jobs, the odds you are tailoring your resume and cover letter to fit the specific opening aren't good.

Submitting a bland cover letter for an opening you may have only minimal interest in is one thing, but you want to take time to craft a standout resume and cover letter for the job you truly want.

Moreover, applying for a job that isn't really of interest to you isn't just wasting your time: It's also wasting the employers’ time.

CareerCast is a job search site with exclusive local and niche job postings, and career advice.

This article was originally published on careercast.com