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Posted July 18, 2016 by

3 tips for getting the most out of part-time jobs

Retail, portrait, clipboard photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

As a college student, it can often feel like your part time job is purely for bringing in the cash you need to splash on your expenses and social activities. This, however, is not necessarily the case. The experience gained from working a part time job can be invaluable towards assisting with your selection of a future career, as well as contributing to landing your first full-time entry-level job later down the track.

1. On-the-job experience

As far as choosing a career goes, you may have already decided. Obviously you’ve enrolled in a college degree, and now it’s just a matter of time before you land your dream job and get started, right? Well, actually, using your choice of part time work to gain particular experience that will assist with your career selection is a good start. Sometimes when you gain on-the-job work experience in a particular field, you may actually change your mind about thinking it’s the perfect career for you.

Part time jobs can be tricky to land, but if you are presented with choice, why not select one that’s closest to the type of job you’ll work once you’ve completed your degree? For example, work as a veterinary assistant while studying to become a vet. Use this opportunity to test the waters and see if you feel comfortable working in a similar environment in which you’ll soon be qualified.

2. Future benefits

As well as using your part time job as an opportunity to test if you enjoy a particular type of work, you can also leverage it to land yourself your first ‘real’ job sooner. The work experience you gain during college will be included on the resume you submit for prospective full-time jobs once qualified. An empty resume won’t impress a prospective employer, nor will having one that fails to contain any outstanding information.

Separate yourself from future competition by using time worked in your part-time job to earn credit for future job applications. Accomplishments such as taking on higher duties, greater responsibility, winning awards, and being promoted will all look fantastic on your resume. Ask your manager if you can take on new work so you have the opportunity to learn different job skills and gain broader exposure to the work environment. You could also assist with designing a strategy to save the business money or increasing the level of customer satisfaction, for example.

3. Expand your network

Holding down a part-time job will also help you to expand your professional network. You’ll create connections and relationships with people that may be able to assist you with finding work at a later date. Your manager may be willing to provide a reference for you, or your colleague may recommend you to their employer at such time as they gain full-time work.

Working hard now will pay off in the future, as you present a resume and work experience that demonstrates your commitment to work and your enthusiasm to achieve beyond minimum expectations.

Searching for a part-time job? Visit College Recruiter and follow our blog. Also, follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Twitter.

Joe Flanagan, Senior Resume Consultant at Velvet Jobs

Joe Flanagan, Senior Outplacement Consultant at Velvet Jobs

Joe Flanagan is the Senior Outplacement Consultant at Velvet Jobs, offering outplacement services and a search facility for job seekers of all ages and industries. His expertise include resume writing, job search tips and hiring issues. When he’s not trying to improve the unemployment rate you can find him traveling the world and learning new languages.
Posted July 16, 2016 by

10 most tricky HR questions for students

Interview photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

You know what the problem is when you graduate and start the interviewing process? You have perhaps half a dozen, perhaps twice that number of interviews under your belt. The people sitting there behind those big desks staring at you steely-eyed? They have done hundreds. That means they know the tricks, they know the strategies, and they know how to make you stumble. If you want to stand a chance at beating them at their own game, you have to be prepared.

Why should I hire you?

This one catches people a lot. They are afraid they will either come across as too arrogant or that they will not push themselves enough. The thing is that is not really what the question is about, and both those traps can be easily avoided if you realize that.

This is not about you telling them how amazing you are. This is about you showing how much you know about them (which is everybody’s favorite topic). So show them that you know what the position entails and what skills will be required. After you have done that you can modestly admit that you have those skills (preferably with a few examples of where you’ve used those skills as showing is always better than telling).

Why is there a gap in your work history?

You have been unemployed for six months because you needed some time to chill out and get your priorities sorted. Or you spent some time living on a beach seeing if it is really true your skin turns green when you drink too many mojitos. Or you lived in your parents’ basements and played video games. Fantastic! You do not necessarily want to tell them that though.

Instead, talk about how you used that time to make yourself a better person. Talk about freelancing work you did, social outreach, or how you spent your time searching for the perfect job (which is obviously the one you are interviewing for right now). Put a positive spin on things by showing how much you grew as a person.

You have been fired from your last job. How did it make you feel?

You have to demonstrate that you can take a blow without becoming either angry or resentful. So even if you are, burry that deep and instead tell them about how you used this as an opportunity to improve yourself so that nothing like this can ever happen to you again.

What is your biggest weakness?

A nasty question! There is no doubt about it. You better prepare to meet this one every so often, because a lot of HR managers have this one in their repertoire and like to throw it out there to see how you react.

The right way to go is to remember that strengths and weaknesses can be different sides of the same coin. So if you have a weakness, admit it and then explain to them how in some situations it can be a strength. Alternatively, take your greatest strength and admit when it might actually be a weakness. That way you show you understand yourself.

Have you ever had a bad experience with an employer?

This one is as much to see how you handle being put on the spot as to see if you will be honest. Remember, everybody is bound to have bad experiences occasionally. We are all human. So they are not going to believe you when you say ‘no, never.’ Instead think of something that did go wrong then admit that it was at least partially your fault and explain how you learned from it and how you will be better next time. That shows both humility and wisdom.

Do not bag on your previous employer! That will raise all sorts of red flags. Yes, it they might be bad people, but this person sitting opposite you will not have a better impression of you if you decide to tell them that.

Frustrated businesswoman screaming photo by StockUnlimited.com

Photo by StockUnlimited.com

Tell about a day when you messed up at work

Another one of those situations where you have to be honest and admit you have done something wrong. After all, nobody is perfect, and if you are not willing to admit you have screwed up you can wave the job you are interviewing for good-bye. Just like with the last question the trick here is to show what you have learned.

How would you deliver bad news to a colleague?

Here is your opportunity to demonstrate empathy and your ability to deal with a stressful situation in a grownup manner. So do not suggest you would send them a text or first let everybody in the office know so that you can all have a laugh. Instead, show them how diplomatic you are.

Will you be out to take my job?

Okay, here you can lie. ‘No’ is the correct answer. ‘I doubt I could do it as well as you’ is a good follow up.

How did you prepare for this interview?

Here is where you demonstrate that you care enough about the job to actually have researched the position (you did research the position didn’t you?). So tell them how you went to the website and read this that and the other. Here you get to show off some of the things you learned, including talking a little bit about the industry as well as what their company specifically does.

Where would you really like to work?

‘Here’ is the right answer. Now you can be a bit honest and suggest that you want to ultimately move into another area in the company, but whatever you do, do not say another company name! That is a fantastic way to close the door on any opportunity to work there.

Last words

The most important thing to remember is that there will be other interviews and however many ‘no’s you get you only want one ‘yes’, so don’t get too stressed out. You will get there in the end. After that, you will have to go through the hard work of keeping the job. That is not exactly easy either, but at this moment, that probably feels more like a ‘wish I had that problem’ problem.

Need more interview tips? Visit our blog and connect with us on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.

Dante Munnis, guest writer

Dante Munnis, guest writer

Dante Munnis is a blogger and idea maker from Stockholm who is interested in self-development, web related topics, and success issues. He shares ideas for students living a better life and building habits that stick. To get strategies for boosting your mental and physical performance, you can get in touch with Dante via Twitter.

 

Posted October 06, 2014 by

5 Job Hunting Tips When You Already Have a Job

Jennifer Parris

Jennifer Parris, Salary.com contributing writer

In many ways, it is an ideal situation. Looking for a job while you already have one has many benefits. You can take your time to find a job that you love without feeling the pressure of having to pay the rent. You get to bone up on your interviewing skills, and discover if the field that you’re interested in is really a fit for you.

That is, if you don’t get caught. (more…)

Posted September 12, 2014 by

What to Do When Your Less Qualified Coworker Makes More Money Than You

Jennifer Parris

Jennifer Parris, Salary.com contributing writer

For the most part, you and your colleagues get along fairly well. As a team, you’re pretty much in sync, with each member pulling his or her weight. That is, with the exception of one team member, who does the least amount of work possible.

Ironically, you discovered the same colleague also makes the same amount of money as you. It’s understandable to get upset, but if you truly want to fix the situation there’s a right and wrong way to go about it.

Here’s what to do when your colleague earns the same as you—and does less. (more…)

Posted July 22, 2014 by

College Graduates, Want to Make Your Jobs a Little Better Each Day? 44 Things You Can Do

While college graduates may not always find their jobs to be exciting, they can get some satisfaction out of them.  The following post includes an infographic with 44 things to make your job a little better each day.

Especially on Monday mornings, it can be hard to find joy at work. Sometimes, even though we aren’t thoroughly unhappy with our job or career choices, we need a little pick-me-up… a little something to help us become more positive, and productive. To our rescue: this infographic from Officevibe, which outlines 44 simple

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Posted July 15, 2014 by

College Graduates, Searching for or Starting New Jobs? 100 Tips in 3 Words

As college graduates searching for or about to start new jobs, the following post offers 100 tips in three words for your careers.

Sometimes, we tend to over-complicate things. Often, the best career and life advice, from the best mentors, comes in bite size, easy-to-digest pieces. Maybe just three words. And no more…

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Posted May 22, 2014 by

Want to Succeed in Your Search for an Entry Level Job This Summer? How to Make Progress

If you are looking to land an entry level job this summer, learn how you can make progress towards that goal in the following post.

With summer coming fast, it’s very tempting to blow off the job or internship search and spend your day lounging in the sun. Unfortunately, unless you’re planning on landing a swimsuit model job or applying for a lifeguard position, this isn’t an approach with a high rate of success. To help you create a sense of urgency and

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Posted March 31, 2014 by

5 Ways Young Professionals on Entry Level Jobs Can Leave a Lasting Impression on Their Bosses

Young professionals, do you need some advice on how to leave a lasting impression with your bosses on your entry level jobs?  Learn five ways to do so in the following post.

In college, I couldn’t wait for what we all called “the real world,” I devoured plenty of articles that dished out advice on navigating the interview process, getting along with coworkers and, most importantly, being positively regarded by the boss. Common advice for impressing superiors included “dress for success”, “show up on time”, “be positive” and simply “be really

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Posted March 26, 2014 by

Networking to Land an Entry Level Job? One Strategy that Just Might Work

If you’re looking for an entry level job by networking, the following post talks about one strategy that could make the difference.

Job searching be much easier if you already knew plenty of colleagues who could tell you if their workplace is awesome — or awful. And put in a good word for you. But you don’t know people at every company… because most of us don’t network as much as we should. Your challenge: get your foot

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Posted March 18, 2014 by

Networking for an Entry Level Job? Learn How to Introduce Yourself First

When meeting someone for the first time, you want to leave them with a positive impression.  So, if you’re networking for an entry level job, you should first learn how to introduce yourself.  Learn how to in the following post.

Think about how many times we are asked in either a professional or social setting, “What do you do?” or “Please introduce yourself to the group.” Similar to writing a compelling bio, taking the time to craft an interesting, concise, reusable response to “What do you do?” or “Please introduce yourself to the group” is an excellent

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