The work world runs on a tight schedule. If you miss a deadline, there are, unfortunately, few second chances.
Many Virginia Tech students are experiencing the daunting process of applying for a job in the real world at this very moment, and it’s important to remember that the professional world is different from college.
Missing a deadline is different than missing one for school. You can’t just email them with a doctor’s note or say you overslept. Those excuses unfortunately won’t work once you graduate.
You have to be responsible for yourself and can’t expect someone in the workplace to give you another chance.
So, to help ease some of the stress and make the application process run smoother, I want to give you some tips on how to make sure you don’t miss those deadlines.
Organization is key.
If you are not an organized individual, now would be the time to start working on that valuable skill. Organization is especially important if you have multiple applications due around the same time.
Write down when applications are due in your planner or set a reminder on your phone. I would even go as far as putting sticky notes on objects you see or use every day.
Keeping track of which companies you are applying to and the dates applications are due will also make sure you don’t send the wrong resume and cover letter to the wrong company.
Some advice I received recently from resident career advisor Ali Woodworth is to make a spreadsheet with the company’s name, the position you are applying for, a description of the job and a description of the company with some interesting facts. Also, double check you have the correct mailing or email address to send your application.
Make sure to save it, because the job description will most likely be taken down from the website before the interview process.
The spreadsheet will help even more when you get invited to interview with a company.
Being organized will not only help you in the long application process, but you will stand out and show a potential employer that you have what it takes to work for their company.
To make that impression right away, don’t miss the deadline. However, you don’t want to be too eager when submitting.
Everyone has heard the phrase “The early bird gets the worm.” It does not necessarily apply to this situation. While it is nice to be the first to turn in that project or finish an assignment right after it’s assigned, when it comes to job applications, you want to make sure you have gone over them several times and given yourself enough time to fix any problems.
Job applications are a time-consuming art. You need to make sure you fill out all the required fields and have a crisp resume and cover letter that represent you and all the work you have accomplished.
So, while you may want to submit the application and hear back sooner rather than later, it’s important to give yourself enough time to edit and submit.
In order to fix any problems that might occur after sending in an application, schedule at least a few days before the deadline to have ample time to correct any mistakes or send the application again if it was not received.
If you give yourself enough time to perfect every aspect of the application and know you have meticulously edited it, you will feel confident pressing the send button or dropping it in the mailbox.
Besides, employers wait until after the end-date to review all applications at once, so there is fair opportunity for everyone. So, really, there is no need to rush to get it in early.
What is important to take away from this week’s Career Corner is that it is time to take responsibility for your work and realize that second chances, unfortunately, are far and few between in the work world.