Understand the importance of a targeted job search

A person circling job search ads in the newspaper

Many students panic at the prospect of not finding immediate employment and apply for any and every job that bears even a remote resemblance to their experience or skill set. This is a mistake for a number of reasons…

  1. It's difficult to succeed at a job that doesn't mesh with who you are.
    People who do well at their jobs are people who enjoy what they do — and you're less likely to enjoy your job if you haven't taken the time to target your job search and direct your efforts at applying for jobs you're really interested in.
  2. Creating a polished, professional and tailored application package takes time.
    It's difficult to invest the time and energy into effectively applying for positions you don't truly care about — which is why applications from students who apply for "anything that comes up" aren't usually strong enough to be competitive.
  3. Employers can tell when you're not all that interested.
    When your documents aren't tailored or you don't know much about the position or you don't seem to care about the company, your application shows it. Employers want to hire people who are enthusiastic about the organization and the position being advertised.

So while it may seem like a good idea to bombard the world with your resumé and hope for the best, you'll experience greater success by really focusing on opportunities that are meaningful to you. That means fewer, stronger applications as opposed to a multitude of weak ones.

Job Search and Networking Strategies: This Career Centre workshop will show you how to effectively target your job search.

Scott Library's Career Research Resources guide provides a variety of resources to help you find information about specific companies or organizations.