Tips and tricks for finding a job – for new graduates (or any job seeker!)

ACC 2016 Career Fair

ACC 2016 Career Fair

While today’s economy continues to show positive signs of growth, recent graduates and job seekers are learning that landing the ideal job can still be a time-consuming, lengthy process. As suggested in her “5 Big Reasons New Grads are Failing the Job Search,” Lea McLeod encourages job seekers to adjust their short term-mindsets and set realistic expectations with the understanding that a job search can take 22 weeks on average. Though the process may be a daunting one, here are some tips to keep in mind to maintain your motivation and encourage you from start to finish!

  • Be persistent! Create a job search strategic plan and work it every day. Think of your job search as a job. Remember all those hours you spent studying for exams and preparing presentations? Put equal energy into the time you spend job searching.
  • Set realistic expectations. As mentioned above, an average job search in the US can last over 4 months. Conduct market research and determine what’s happening in your industry. How long are job searches taking for different disciplines? With this in mind, set daily, weekly, and monthly goals for yourself in the process.
  • Develop a marketing mindset and identify your personal brand. Understanding who you are and who your potential customers (employers) are will help you be more efficient and effective in your job search. Get into self-assessment land and learn as much about yourself, your strengths, your desired workplace qualities and how you’ll add value. Based on your findings, develop clear messages about who you are and the value proposition you represent.
  • Get into the employer’s head. Use LinkedIn to research what employers want. Identify what jobs are posted, what problems are they trying to solve, what outcomes candidates are expected to achieve.
  • Work your network. Contact alumni in your field. Reach out to all your connections via LinkedIn or other Social Media outlets to remind them of your continued job search. Meet new industry connections by joining a professional groups in your area.

As McLeod offers in her article mentioned above, you want to stop asking “How can I find a job that pays a lot and that I love?” and start asking yourself “Who has problems that I love solving and how do I find them?” If you’re still coming up short-handed or feeling like you’re hitting the proverbial wall, use ACC’s Career & Transfer Center. Call 303-797-5705 to make an appointment with one of ACC’s career counselors to get additional advice and help with your resume, networking, and overall job search.

by Shari Culver, ACC Career and Transfer Counselor

Hottest Jobs in the U.S.

Female hospital administrative in a modern medical centerJob hunting is a balance of art and science. Many parts of the job hunt are subjective, such as resume formatting and how to answer tricky questions during an interview. Dick Bolles, author of the best-selling job-hunting book in the world What Color is Your Parachute?, teaches readers how to give yourself the greatest advantage in your job hunt. Bolles says that job hunters typically fall into three categories:

  • Those who follow luck
  • Hunters who rely on intuition
  • And those with a step-by-step process

Job seekers who use the step-by-step process are the most successful. If you’re thinking of finding a new job, now is the time to start, and using research as one of your first steps will help you land one of this year’s hot jobs.

Earlier this year, Glassdoor, the fastest growing jobs and recruiting site, released the 25 Best Jobs in America, which rank jobs according to three factors:

  • Earning potential (median annual base salary)
  • Career opportunities rating
  • A number of job openings

Here are the top three hottest jobs from that list.

The #1 hottest job for 2016: Data Scientist

A data scientist is defined as someone who does data analysis to present findings to executives. This is an evolution (or, as in some cases, a renaming) of the data analyst position. It also happens to be the “sexiest job” of the 21st century according to an article in the Harvard Business Review. To be a data scientist, you need to combine knowledge of computer science, modeling, statistics, and analysis to retrieve findings from data.

There are currently more than 1,700 openings for data scientists listed on Glassdoor and the median salary is $116,840. The career opportunities rating is 4.1 and the job score is 4.7. Take a look at ACC’s Data Analytics, Health Data Analytics, Computer Science or Mathematics programs to gauge your interest in these related fields.

Business people with charts and graphsThe #2 hottest job for 2016: Tax Manager

A tax manager oversees all tax plans for people and organizations. They ensure all tax matters adhere to governmental guidelines and provide advice on tax-related issues. A tax manager must have knowledge of local, international, and global tax laws, depending on the client’s needs, and must complete tax returns. A degree in accounting or taxation is usually required.

There are more than 1,500 job openings on Glassdoor for this position, with a median base salary of $108,000. The career opportunities rating is 3.9 and the job score is 4.7. At ACC, our Accounting program will equip you with the knowledge to being your journey to becoming a tax manager.

The #3 hottest job for 2016: Solutions Architect

A solutions architect is someone who designs applications or services in an organization that solves problems for clients. This person must be savvy technically and business-wise with great communication skills. Previously, this role may have been a systems analyst or IT consultant. This person selects the right technology to solve a problem and usually has a team who will implement the solution. The International Association of Solution Architect (IASA) has laid out a development path for those interested in this career.

On Glassdoor, there are more than 2,900 openings for solutions architects. The median base salary is $119,500 and it has a career opportunities rating of 3.5 and a job score of 4.6. If you’re interested in this career, ACC’s Computer Technology and Business programs are great places to start.

Landing a Top Job

The top rankings in the list are mostly for tech jobs, which has been a consistent trend for years. If technology isn’t your forte, jobs like human resources manager (#6) and marketing manager (#14) also made the list. There are number of great career paths you can follow with the right focus and education.

The best way to approach your job hunt is to prepare yourself while actively seeking opportunities. By attending classes at Arapahoe Community College, you’ll be able to enhance your skills in an area related to the field you’d like to work in. Never deny yourself a chance to land your dream job because of a lack of education or knowledge in a field; rather, invest in your education so you have the best chances for a great future.