Secrets of the Job Hunt


Monday, January 08, 2007

Searching for a job after college, Part I

One of my readers was kind enough to share his job hunting experience in the form of his new blog. His name is Alexander Kharlamov and here is the beginning story of his job hunt. You can then finish reading it over at his blog.

In 2003, I graduated from Stony Brook University with a bachelor’s degree in computer science. In retrospect, I could not have picked a less appropriate time to enter the job market. During my senior year, I met some recent computer science graduates driving trucks or working in a deli – the job market was so atrocious that they could not land an offer.

There were very few companies willing to hire recent grads, because a lot of people with 10 or more years of experience were jobless, and were willing to work for entry-level salaries. Those that did hire set impossibly high standards – 3.5 (out of 4.0) GPA, degree with honors, and years of real world experience in a big corporation – right after you graduate. My GPA was below 3.0 and I graduated with no honors whatsoever.

Nevertheless, with hard work, I found the career of my dreams. After coming home from my temporary job, I put in 4-5 hours daily into my job searching. At the time I wished there was a complete guide to job hunting, but there was none. With this article (split in multiple parts due to length) I hope to fill the void for that guide. If you’re not a recent college grad, you should still read on, because some of the items you will discover will come as a surprise to even the most experienced job hunters.

The single most important thing you have to realize is searching for a good job is a full-time job in itself. Fully expect spending a few hours job hunting, even if you have taken a temporary “McJob” to make ends meet. Make sure you’re ready, mentally and physically, for the search. The easy part ended when you graduated college.

Continued >>

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