Job Search This is going to be a pretty

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					This is going to be a pretty long post. I do not guarantee that if you follow these things I talk about you
will get a job. But you will end up doing most of the things I talk about in this article in your job search at
various points of time. So I figured I could save you time and let you know what you could do. I should
also say that there will be points in this article which you will brush aside saying there is no way I am
going to do that but trust me the longer your search goes the more you will do everything you think you
would have not. I was in a denial mode too at some point saying these are not things I am comfortable
doing, I will try other ways and that I believe in my abilities but the truth is there is a reason
blogs/articles and suggestions are made asking people to do these things. You will only understand the
reasoning behind these suggestions when you are at that point yourself. At this point it is just a wasted
suggestion for you to read, but I will try my best to make you see reason.

(I will try to follow a chronological order of how your job search changes as you grow more desperate)

BASICS OF JOB SEARCH

You should pretty much know what you need to go about a job search. A) Resume b) Cover Letter c)
References 4) A copy of your transcripts (rarely asked but always good to have a copy).

There are multiple job sites like indeed, monster, career builder etc through which you could look for
jobs. It is always a good idea to set up alerts for key words that you usually search. That way the email
that you get every morning will at least remind you of the job search that you are not doing and it also
helps in knowing what the latest job postings are. While initially you would probably search for 5 or
more keywords and get a whole bunch of jobs, you will gradually realize that you neither have the time
nor do your qualifications match all these keywords exactly. So while I may suggest only looking at one
or two keywords, it is totally understandable if you search for all keywords considering you are jobless
and you want to get any job anywhere! But it is important that you analyze how your job search is going
and make changes quickly. Yes, I understand that not having a job you do not want to take chances and
so want to apply for every job that is present in the market outside. But you should remember that
there are 1000s of applications that are also applying for the same job so why would a recruiter look at
your mismatched profile and have a sixth sense that by short listing you for an interview you will
showcase better skills than any other candidate? Even if it is true, again you’re depending too much on
the recruiter’s sixth sense. So I will not say not to apply for these jobs, but save these jobs and apply for
them on the weekend or some time when it will not eat away your time too much. This is a very basic
level of job search that I am sure pretty much everyone will be pursuing. If this finds you a job, find
yourself lucky, at least in this recession period.

THE MAGIC CALLED LINKEDIN

Somewhere for long you have been hearing about it. You have a profile but are not quite sure what to
do. The first and most important thing to do is to make sure your profile is complete, and by complete I
mean it should say 100%. This cannot be achieved without recommendations so get old friends to write
up about you. Then add contacts. For someone just starting it is pretty scary to just add strangers. So
start off by importing contacts from your email account and sending an invite across to everyone. You
will have a 40-50% success rate and your contacts grow. You can reject a friend request on Facebook but
remember every request is accepted on LinkedIn. So again, why is it so important to increase your
contacts? LinkedIn works a lot due to how big your network is and this includes how you are connected
to your friends and in turn how that connects you to their friends and so on. There are always
restrictions on how you can search for people or how people can find you. On a normal account you
cannot search through to more than a 3rd degree contact. So if 10 friends can connect you to a 100 3rd
degree contacts, 50 people will probably allow you access to 500 people. You calculate the probabilities
and I won’t explain further.

Groups. While groups are a general area where a lot of jobs are posted by recruiters, the other reason
why people join a group is because you can send friend requests to other members of the group without
having to know their email address. So join groups related to your field, be prepared to use some as
“use and throw”. You can have alerts for groups as well that email you the latest discussions and job
postings or just check them every week. But do check what’s happening in the groups because there are
a lot of job postings, which are posted by the recruiters themselves. When you see a job, reply to it, add
the recruiter who posted (recruiters generally accept) and then find out more details about the job. I will
talk later in more detail about how to work with recruiters and who they actually are.

Signal. This feature on LinkedIn allows you to search for updates by any of your 1st, 2nd, or 3rd degree
contacts. So the bigger your network more the number of status updates/group postings you get to see.

COMING BACK TO YOUR ORIGINAL JOB SEARCH

You have been applying every day for tens of jobs but have not heard anything back or are wondering
what that you are lacking in is. Maybe some lucky few have got a couple of interviews. But yet, given the
number of applications one completes the success percentage is pretty less. So what is missing? Before I
sidetrack, it is a good option to get your resume reviewed at the career center in your university.
Imagine yourself getting married and your dad gives you a hundred photos with a small description.
How you decide is purely based on what you read and what you see. But if that person contacts you and
talks to you, you know more about him and have a better chance of making a decision. Otherwise, you
will blindly look at a few parameters of your dream person and do a match the following. So now that
you have understood why it is important to not just apply for a job but to also contact someone related
to the job. Let’s get back to LinkedIn

THE SO FAR NOT SO MAGICAL SITE LINKEDIN

Always note down the position name, location and name of the company of the job you have applied to.
Then look up on LinkedIn for either a recruiter at that location or someone with a similar/senior position
in that office and send them a request or a message. There Is a 1/10 chance that one of those guys you
find or who has replied you is the Hiring Manager or someone associated with the recruiting for the
position you have applied to. So you have found the girl/guy to whom you have send your picture and
bio data. Now impress them. Without this person to talk to your application would not have got a
second look. Now you have more than a second look, your almost pre interviewing. This is one of the
major reasons why people use LinkedIn for job searching. It allows them access to people who have the
right to recruit you. This process though will involve a lot of patience. Not everyone will accept your
request and not everyone has to be related to what you are looking for. But there will always be a few
people who are more than willing to suggest you whom to contact or maybe even refer you. It could be
the 75th guy you talked to. But to meet that 75th guy you have to try meeting the 74 before that. Do not
stop the process at any point.

THE PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT THERE TO LOOK FOR A JOB FOR YOU: RECRUITERS

Having already started adding recruiters you would have realized by now that a lot of them do not seem
to recruit people who require sponsorship. Some do though they may not have an open position right
now. You must understand though that recruiters do not work the way you think they do. They are not
there to search a job for you. It actually works the other way around. Companies hire them to fill a
position and they in turn search for suitable candidates. So if you happen to talk to a recruiter for a
position and he thinks you’re not a fit that is not the end of your relation. They are always looking for
lots of positions to fill, so make sure you leave a copy of your resume with them and stay in contact. You
do not have to bug them every week but by just having that first conversation where you tell them what
you are looking for and what is ideal for you they will have you in mind. Any time something in their line
of action comes up they will contact you. It may take time but it will. Again, this is why the more
recruiters you contact the better your chances are of getting that elusive phone. My advice though is to
be honest with the recruiter because if you lie to them and they have you interview for a position and it
turns our bad, they will not be too happy suggesting you to another company.

The other advantage of working with recruiters is that they tell you more details about the job
requirements than what you see on the website. If they do not sponsor, there is no point in you wasting
time. You will only know this information if you talk to the recruiter. So any time there is a phone
number, call them. Do not be scared or think they are being intruded. The number is present for a
reason.

RETURNING TO THE JOB SEARCH THAT SHOULD HAVE GOT YOU A JOB

As you go through all this and talk to so many recruiters and interview for a few positions, sit back and
analyze what is going wrong. It should not be that difficult to understand why. This is such an open
ended process that there is always scope for improvement. At this point of time you almost know how a
recruiter works, how a position is filled and how many applications apply for a job. You would have
known before too but unless you are deep into it yourself it sometimes does not strike you. That resume
you have had all along, though conveys a lot of things, it explicitly does not tell the recruiter that you are
the fit. So, given the 10 seconds he has, considering he is one of those who you could not contact on
LinkedIn. How do you make those 10 seconds count?

If you hear a girl you like telling someone that she likes guys who wear white, you will wear it. You will
cut your hair short the next day if you get to know she likes it short. All these will not make you a couple,
but it gives you a greater chance of being observed. Change your resume for every job. This is
something you hear very often. But it is not until you reach this stage of the process that you actually
understand it yourself why it is so important. That is just the way it works. I hope you have understood
by now that customizing the Cover Letter is something you should have been doing by now. It takes a lot
of time, it eats up the time you could apply for jobs or you feel too obvious making those changes. All
true but for that girl who is looking for the white shirt guy, she has no clue why you are wearing it. She
may find out, but for now this will work.

SPENDING MONEY FOR THE MAGIC

There is a job seeker account on LinkedIn that gives you some additional benefits. I am not going to go
into much detail on what they are but it is not the worst option to have either. It gives you more access
to search more people and see who visited your profile and also lets you put a badge that says you are a
job seeker. By now if your network has grown, one of the other advantages you get though you may not
know is that the probability of people finding you in their own searches increases. This also of course
depends on how well you have built your profile and the number of key words related to your industry
you have included. So fill your profile up with words you think are related and add related people. That
way when they search for someone with those skills to fill a position, if you land in their results they will
contact you.

NETWORKING IN ITS TRUE SENSE

Everyone says try and contact your college alumni and see if they can help you and you wonder if it will
still work considering you are an international student. Think back; imagine someone who graduated
from your school contacts you asking for advice. You will help. There are no second doubts about it.
Irrespective of whom you are, or who they are. That sense of feeling is much greater in this country.
They want people from their alumni to do well and are willing to go out of their way to help you. Again,
you have to keep trying until you find that one person. Remember though that because you are trying to
contact someone purely as an alumni of the school you both went to, it is not advisable to go straight
and ask for a job. Tell him what you’re doing, what you are looking for and ask for advice. You do not
even have to go into details of what advice you need. Just saying you need advice on your career can
also get you a two page reply, or sometimes a phone call to talk in more detail about your needs. The
shy reserved guy I am, in my moments of desperation after months of deliberation sent out such
messages and was shocked at the length of the replies I got. I was overwhelmed by the kind of help
people were willing to do. Put aside your feelings and send that one message and you will not fear
again.

EXCLUSIVELY FOR AGGIES

In order to do all the above steps, processes or whatever you want to call it, there are tools that help
you. These are provided by the University through the libraries or the career center. The resume review
is one of the most common help tool most students use.

Through hireaggies.com there are a couple of websites that A & M gives access to that could be very
helpful. Career shift and Going Global

Career Shift is a job search website but apart from just looking for jobs, when you find a position it also
gives you access to contacts in that company.
The other website is Going Global. This lets you see the number of H1B petitions made by a company.
You can search either by city, state or by field.
WCL.LIBRARY.TAMU.EDU has a large resource of business database that help you in your interview
preparation. You can visit the library at any point of time to seek guidance on how to use them. Just a
very small preview for those interested. Hoovers Premium database gives you information about the
company, the people who work, the financials, and the latest news. Business Source Complete is also
another tool that you can use for your interview preparation. This has a more analytical way of giving
information about the company including SWOT analysis.
For what it is worth, I do not know if people will read it or find this information new but having had gone
through such a tedious process myself I felt it unfair that I do not share this knowledge with anyone else.

Ramakanth Sai Josyula

				
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