Six Things You Should Do Before Starting Your Job Search

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Ready to start dominating your job search? First, make sure your basics are covered! Complete these six simple steps before rolling up your sleeves and diving into those applications.


1. Create a professional email address

An email like ‘’ might have been cool when you were younger, but now’s the time to give your email address a glow-up. Create an account with a more direct and formal address. Ensure the address is concise and clearly states your first and last name.

2. Set up an email signature

Add a polished look to your professional emails while also ensuring your contact information is readily available to employers by adding a signature. Include your full name, phone number, email address and link to your online portfolio or LinkedIn account.

3. Update your voicemail greeting

When’s the last time you recorded a new voicemail greeting? Still thinking? Probably time to update. Use this template:

You’ve reached first name, last name—I’m not available at the moment but please leave a brief message and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Thank you.

4. Audit your online presence

It’s estimated that 70% of employers screen job candidates’ social media during the interview process… so it’s time to review as if you are your future employer. As a young professional any pictures of partying, posts with foul language or sensitive personal information should be hidden or deleted.

5. Come up with a game plan

Set basic goals and benchmarks for your job search to avoid getting overwhelmed. What job titles or industries are you most interested in? Are you open to relocation? Determining this criterion early on will save you time and effort. Once established, set a weekly goal for application submissions to help you stay motivated.

6. Prep your paperwork

It may help to peruse examples of resume and cover letters online to find a format you like. Once you’ve written your best resume, ask a trusted mentor or friend to serve as a fresh set of eyes. Ensure your file name is professional – your name and the position title work well. After saving to PDF format and reviewing onscreen, print to ensure all formatting is precise. 77% of employers will immediately screen out a resume with typos or bad grammar—so review, review and then review again.

Chart Your Course
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Additional Career Resources

How to Dress for Success

How to Prepare for an Interview

You Received a Job Offer … Now What?

Questions to Ask During Job Interviews

After an Interview: Follow Up Best Practices

Conquering Job Applications

Crafting a Standout Cover Letter

Six Things You Should Do Before Starting Your Job Search

Writing Your Best Resume

Your Job Search: Strategies for Success

Developing Your Professional Network

How to Tell Your Story

How to Use LinkedIn Like a Pro

How to Conquer Career Fairs

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