As college students it can often seem like having job security is more important than being picky about where you want to work. However, I believe that these two things go hand in hand. If you want to have job security you should look at jobs that meet your standards so you are less likely to leave that position. Having a job is only the first step in job security, you also want the job to meet your income needs, or maybe you need insurance coverage but the job you’re at doesn’t offer it. All of these aspects lean into what it truly means to be secure in your position. That is why it is key to create your criteria for a potential job before doing any job searches or going into any interviews. Knowing what you want can narrow your job hunt and will allow you to gain a position you truly enjoy and I are more likely to succeed at.
Setting your job criteria is like making your list of colleges you want to apply to. You take into account things like location, cost, if they offer your major, what is the faculty like, campus culture, etc. These are very important in your job search as well. First you want to determine what kind of work interests you. Then, you want to consider things if you enjoy working with people all day or doing computer/paper work. Once you determine what kind of work you want to be doing then you can begin narrowing it down to the type of company you might want to work with. You start by asking yourself if there are any companies that you specifically want to work for, and if not you can begin determining what you want from a company you might work for. You would need to determine the environment you prefer to work in, whether you like closed office space or a more open airy communication style workplace. Then look into the company culture and see what things a company should value if you were to work there. Some final things to consider would be location and salary. It is important to consider whether you would be willing to move or if there are specific locations you like more than others. Of Course salary is important, you want to make sure that the job you’re looking for could provide proper economical support.
There are obviously many more questions you could ask yourself when creating a criteria for a potential job, but these are just a few staple questions to get you started. Why is this so important? It may seem like there is no reason to physically create a list but in reality creating a list can help you realize more about yourself and your specific job you may want, it also helps you narrow your job search so that you spend less time searching and coming across jobs that don’t fit you and more time sending in resumes and getting called in for interviews. To show you how important it is I am going to list my criteria for job searching and expand on why each point is important for my personal search.
- What Kind of work am I interested in?
I am personally interested in working in law, in particular public interest law.
- What Job environment do I want to work in?
I would like to work in an environment where people are willing to work together to accomplish work goals and help eachother grow.
- I value ethical business codes, what company culture would suit me best?
Company culture is an important aspect to me, I desire to work in a place where the company clearly cares for their employees, there is open communication, and high standards for ethical work procedures.
- Do I want routine or a more spontaneous work environment?
I think some form of routine helps me to stay focused in a working environment, but some form of spontaneity to keep things from getting mundane is essential.
- What tasks do I definitely not want to do?
I do not want to be stuck behind a computer screen punching in numbers all day.
- How do I plan to grow at this company?
I would love to stay at a company for a few years and learn new skills, rise to a higher position, and then maybe continue to pursue higher degrees of work in my career field elsewhere.
- What kind of people do I want to work with?
I want to work with open-minded people who communicate well and are willing to follow through with things to benefit the productivity of the company as a whole.
- What kind of hours do I prefer to work?
I prefer to work weekdays at the typical 9-5 but am not opposed to earlier or later hours.
- What are my long term career goals (10-20 years)?
In the future I would love to be working towards a governmental position working with the United Nations.
- Do I mind if I have to take work home with me at the end of the day?
Taking work home is not ideal, but if it occurs every now and again that would not be a major turn off for the position.
- What kind of benefits am I looking for from the company?
I would like to have some form of healthcare/insurance coverage.
- What salary range do I need?
Ideally to cover housing, car, transportation, food, and various other expenses ~$35,000 salary.
- What location would I prefer to work?
I would prefer to work on the East Coast in a more populated area (small-larger city).
- Would I mind travelling for work?
I would not mind at all to travel for my work.
- What am I willing to compromise on?
I may be willing to compromise some on the salary range if the job fits every other aspect of my criteria and there is potential for salary increase.