The Job Hunting Thread - It's not about what you know but who you know

I’ve recently graduated from college in December with my Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering Technology, and here is what I’ve learned, so far, from my pursuits in career hunting.

  1. More than a majority of jobs are filled either internally within a company or by word of mouth. By the time you’ve seen an online posting about a job more often than not it has already been circulated through these channels.

  2. Searching on job boards is a good way to find potential opportunities, but simply applying is just sending your resume into cyberspace. Your second task after applying to a job is to find that particular companies human resources department and their telephone numbers and email addresses. As I’m sure many of you know (hopefully) we’re in a recession and nothing less that being aggressive and assertive is going to land you a job.

  3. Having solid resume and cover letter writing skills are a must. Just google templates and samples to get a good idea, and you damn well better be using grammar and spell checking. Getting your resume thrown out due to a typo is a great way of shooting yourself in the foot.

  4. Don’t be put off by job postings in which you don’t meet every single criteria on their checklist. You have to realize that this is their ideal candidate, and if you meet a majority of the requirements don’t hesitate to apply. Obviously have some common sense about what jobs you’ve applied for, I’ve heard of someone with an Interior Design degree apply to be an HTML Coder. :confused:

  5. Use social networking sites as resources. I often update my status on facebook that I am currently looking for work, and is another great networking site.

Post up if you’ve got anything that you think helped or hurt you in your job search whether you’re looking for work or are well into your career.

I’m in the field of CS, so when I would get an interview set up, I always try to ask what technical subject’s I’ll be questioned on. From there I would always go to Google and type in “(C++, Java, whatever) interview questions”, and sure enough, 99% of those questions would be asked at the real interview. I’m pretty sure you can do this no matter what field you’re going into.

i hire people occasionally to work for me and the big thing i get frustrated with is that people don’t read the job posting and blindly send their resume. usually i’ll ask something specific so i know they can do the job but rarely do they put the effort in to do it.

wastes my time and those resumes just end up in the trash.

Wow, you graduated a few months ago and you’re already an expert in the job market. Reminds me of those kids who take a first year philosophy course and already know the meaning of life.

Except that all of his advice is true…

To be fair he did say “what I’ve learned so far”, and it’s all pretty much solid, except #5, social networking sites are far more trouble than they’re worth, especially with their patchy security. A quick Google search of your name might bring up something you’d rather not share with a prospective employer.

Touching on education, dunno how it is in the US and elsewhere but here in the UK most Universities are just an extension of what went on in schools, forced memorisation of facts and figures and having the ability to spew them out on command for exams. I stepped out into the world after Uni without a clue what I was doing, I’d been living in a bubble for the past 10 years in regards to learning how to cope with working in the real world. That was a huge hurdle towards getting a decent job, experience is at a premium and a degree is only a piece of paper at the end of the day. I’ve bullshitted well enough to get at least three jobs I wasn’t ‘qualified’ for and learnt how to do them via the usual refresher-course inductions they provided. If I’d only went for the jobs that were specifically aimed at graduates of my course then I’d probably still be sitting on the dole atm, but as it stands I’ve got those places who are happy to give me a good reference in the future.

TL;DR - Nice guys finish last, if you don’t have a ready source of nepotism to help you onto the career ladder, get good at lying.

That’s great advice, I’ll be sure to use that in the future. Engineers get asked to be familiar with a lot of different software/coding languages depending on the job.

This all sounds like career stuff and professional jobs, what if you’re trying to just get a job at Mcdonald’s, a diner, or the movie theatre?

Speaking from my own experience (worked at an Arcade, Subway, then (and now) Best Buy) I pretty much got every job instantly because I knew someone who worked there or got to know someone who did. I dunno filling out applications to everywhere just feels futile but it works sometimes.

I’m a senior studying EE and I have some connections in the first company I would like to work for once I’m out of school also.

I’ve been jobless since Feb of 2009, and couldn’t even get a call back.

Suddenly my dad talks to some lady him and my mom run with, and she mentions she will try to get me a job at a steel mill.

So now I make almost 20 an hour, for a chimp job, all because somebody was friends with my parents. All of life, it would seem, is about getting into cliques.

also, my #1 rule for any interview is KNOW THE COMPANY. Seriously, just google some shit about it, and let them know you’ve been reading up on them. When they ask you the age old “do you have any questions” always ask about their safety policies. even if they don’t have em, ask anyways.

give up on life

Welll I do have a friend who works for FedEX to reccommend me, but the thing is I live out in The Boondocks so even if I were to get the job, the walk is too damn far. just filling out applications right now and calling those stores in after a couple of weeks to see if they considered me. Been doing this since 08. Only resulted in two interviews in all that time. One at a factory. I knew I fucked that opportunity up and another at Target. (Not sure what happened there)

ignoring bullshit from above

I worked a fast food job for like 4 years and then our store got new ownership so I tried looking for a job for almost 1.25 years maybe 25 resumes and no luck. Every job a friend tried to hook me up with was one I couldn?t take like overnights, full time during school or a job that requires a full driver?s license.

I quit in Jan because of school and I finished school last month got a Computer Systems diploma (and im getting another next April) and ya it?s a bitch to find a job nowadays Its who u know or the lottery application process.

I actually have a job interview on Monday for a office bitch/admin assist?s type job that I got through regular means though my dad knows the guy who runs the office so if I didn?t get an interview he would still slot me in. Tho it?s a bit of a bitch that the job pays $10.25 n only last 6 weeks when it cost me $16 to travel there, but its better than poor.

you couldn’t learn a skill or a trade in 2 years of being unemployed? what are you doing with all of your time?

Going to school, playing video games, selling Avon. Quit Avon because women kept on ordering stuff and not paying for it or I had several people who said that they were interested and never called me.

Oh, I just realized if I did get that FedEx job it’ll probably interfere with school too. For one my friend goes to work at 4:30 am and I might have to do the same thing too and walking that distance at night, ain’t safe. I already got hit by a car one time already. I recently tried a car wash and the manager asked if I had a driver’s license. I said I have a permit. All the car washers laughed and the manager said come back when I have a license.

"WTF! How can you expect me to get a DL if I don’t have the money for insurance. Why would a car wash require you to have that anyway? I didn’t need one when I was a detailer back in 06.

Dude you don’t have to buy, or have insurance to get your drivers license. You can have one and pay no insurance at all. They also probably expect you to be able to drive the cars around the lot. How old are you anyway?

last time I went to the DMV and was mistaken for trying to get a license, they told me to bring proof of insurance for whoever’s car I will be driving.

Really? Huh.

Yup. It’s the law that you have to have insurance to drive.

I guess you would be driving for the DRIVERS test huh? D’oh.