Job hunting at any stage in life can be daunting, more so if you are a fresh graduate. It may seem that recruiters favor young applicants because of multiple factors including age, lower asking salaries and the opportunity to bring new ideas to organizations, but the reality is that job hiring for fresh graduates is tougher than it looks.
Recruiters may want to take in young and more affordable labor but on the flipside, they also look at the experience candidates have.
We share some common challenges for fresh graduates who are job hunting as well as possible answers for tough interview questions.
Education has become much more accessible now. With scholarships and financial aid options, there are more opportunities to achieve a college degree. As a student, your goal is to get into a good school, earn good grades, and eventually get a good job after graduation. The thing is, you are not the only one thinking this way.
If a recruiter asks what makes you stand out, a solid answer would be to say that your studies are a match for the job opening. Sell your attributes to the recruiter. Think of your “elevator pitch” or two or three sentences that feature why you are best suited for the role.
Minimal or no work experience
A good chunk of entry-level work favors job seekers with one to three years of work experience. But as a fresh graduate, that doesn’t mean you’re out of the running.
If you are straight out of college, your work experience likely comes from either part-time work or internships. Though it’s not an actual job per se, this does not entail that there is no value to interning for companies or taking on sideline work. Everything can be a learning experience. Highlight your accomplishments in these roles and their relevance to the job you’re applying for. Or, be productive. Consider looking for freelance projects while you are in between jobs to amp your skill set and add experience to your profile.
Recruiters will always ask what your skills are, even though you’ve listed them in your CV and application form. But use this time to shine. Are you learning a new programming language while job hunting? Tell recruiters that you are still learning more skills related to the job while looking for work. Not only does this show that you are open to growth, this also tells recruiters that you are actively building your skill set to make yourself more marketable.
Do not forget your soft skills! Technical skills may be learned through workshops and additional classes but soft skills are developed over time.
This article originally appeared on JobStreet.com. Minor edits have been implemented by the Cosmo.ph editors. Read the full story here.