Friday, November 1, 2013

Landing your First Entry-Level Position!

"Trust me Priya, it's all about the GPA! All you need is a nicely perfected resume and a great network of connections, and you'll definitely have no problems landing a job!"

Let's admit it, you've heard that, I've heard that, we all have.
Now, this is not to discredit what has been mentioned above, but rather to point out that in today's time, employers JUST WANT MORE!  Considering the state of our current job market, it's necessary to go above and beyond and out-compete other applicants also.   

Yes, it is undeniable that competition is immense, but I don't want you to feel discouraged!  It is definitely a task that is achievable. So please do take advantage of the tips I will provide you with, and you'll definitely be equipped for success!

It's never too late to obtain an Internship:

Upon analyzing results obtained from a survey conducted in 2012, which included more than 7300 students and recent graduates, and over 300 human resources and recruitment professionals, 54% of recent graduates are unemployed or underemployed.  "The only way to avoid being part of these statistics is to be enrolled in an internship,” says Stuart Lander, chief marketing officer at He goes further on to add that, “You have a 7 in 10 chance of being hired by the 
    company you interned with” (Smith, 2012).

Contribute by Volunteering: 

Volunteering will help you gain valuable connections and the attention of employers.  A government study conducted by The Corporation for National and Community Service, a federal agency monitored more than 70,000 individuals whom were unemployed between the years of 2002-2012, and discovered that those who had volunteered had a 27% better chance of finding a job than those who didn’t (Collamer, 2013).

Maximize your Social Media Presence and Develop your Personal Brand: 

37% of employers examine potential candidates through social networks. In fact 2 in 5 companies browse profiles to evaluate character and personality. From a Nationwide survey conducted by Harris Interactive, ( from February 8 to March 2, 2012, including more than 2000 hiring managers and human resource professionals, employers are primarily using Facebook (65%) and LinkedIn (63%) to research candidates. Only 16% used twitter (Smith, 2012).

Expand your network:
Only 15-20% of available jobs are advertised to the public, and starting early and networking through a “word of mouth” referral is the best way to land a new job!

Tips for Networking

This above link provides a list of tips you could follow through to ease the networking process.

   Follow the footsteps of a Career   Mentor:
Finding an individual who already works in your field can definitely offer guidance!  To find a mentor, research that particular field and discover those who are currently working in that field.  Send a formal polite email, and see who responds.  That initiation is sufficient, and be patient to observe their personalities and follow through. Take it slow, and before you know it, you’ll find the right mentor (Doyle, 2013). 

Develop Your Skills:  

Gain new, in -demand skills that will put you in front of other competitors for entry level positions:
Critical Thinking, Complex Problem Solving, Judgement and Decision Making, Active Listening, Computers and Electronics, Operations and Systems Analysis, Mathematics, Monitoring, Programming, Sales and Marketing (Casserly, 2012).

Perfect your resume, cover letter, and be prepared for that interview:
Book a resume critique coaching appointment on the intranet, and address any questions and concerns you may have. Also, you may book a career counseling appointment, if you need further assistance in terms of enhancing your interview skills, etc.  
Visit our website for more information: UTSC Academic Advising & Career Centre or feel free to come visit us in person: AC213.  We’d be glad to offer further assistance.

Additional Resources: 

Exploring Career Options

After reading this, and having made the conscious effort to follow through the guidelines I've presented, I am positive you'll have no problems landing that first entry level position!

Best of Luck,
Priya Antony
November 1, 2013

___________________________________________________________________________ References: 
Smith, J. (2012, June 12). Internships may be the easiest way to a Job in 2013. Retrived from

Collamer, N. (2013, June 24). Proof that Volunteering Pays Off For Job Hunters. Retrieved from

Smith, J. (2012, April 20). Make Social Media Your Job-Finding Weapon. Retrieved from

Ettus, S. (2012, August 7). 25 Ways to Win at Networking. Retrieved from
Doyle, A. (2013). How to find a Career Mentor. Retrieved from

Casserly, M. (2012, December 10). The 10 Skills That Will Get You Hired In 2013.  Retrieved from  

1 comment:

anton norbert said...

Well articulated forward looking piece.