News and Tips
I spend a lot of time talking with hiring managers, recruiters, and people who are looking for great qualified applicants for really good jobs. Here are some general lessons I’ve learned this week in talking with people who want to hire iSchool grads:
- You need a portfolio. A good portfolio. Ask professionals in the field to review it for you as a good way to make a connection with someone and get tips that will help improve it. Look for or ask for examples of portfolios of people who have jobs that you want.
- Build/show a breadth of skills. Learn a few programming languages, demonstrate project management ability, business acumen, IT systems, database systems, and more at a basic level to be able to talk to your diverse skill set when you meet with potential employers.
- Build/show depth in a skill in your interest area to set yourself apart. One thing I heard this week from a recruiter is that they need someone with experience in complex application design, rather than just basic web development, for example. Pick one or two skills or topics that you like and are good at to focus extra energy on. If you can take a few skills to the next level above your peers, you just might be the perfect fit for someone with a need in that area.
- Meet the basic qualifications. Read the description carefully if there is one, customize your resume to demonstrate that you have the elements they are looking for, and show them through your resume and cover letter and in conversation that you understand what their fundamental needs are (and if you don’t know, ask!). You don’t always need to meet all of the elements listed in a job description (it’s rare that someone will), but know the position and how your skills match up with what the identified and most basic needs are.
Confused about how you’re ever going to do all of this? It might be as simple as changing how you talk about your skills and experiences and how you list these in your materials. Come see me (firstname.lastname@example.org) to talk about your specific questions! Continue reading