The Job Search

Whether you are conducting the Job Search for the first time or have conducted the job search various times, the process can be overwhelming. Our hope is to simplify this process so that you can effectively take the steps necessary to conduct a successful job search.

This information is for the purpose of getting you started. If you find yourself still having questions please feel free to contact us at for additional assistance.


STEP 1: Narrow Your Search

Once you have completed the Career Planning stage and have made a decision about field you wish to pursue, narrowing your search will allow you to market yourself specifically to employers and jobs that are of interest. Failing to have a point of focus or target may hinder your job search process. There are several ways to narrow your search. Consider the following:

  1. Where do you want to live? Decide where you would like to live and begin researching the job market in that area.  Depending on your financial circumstances and the economy, you need to exercise flexibility and a willingness to relocate in order to broaden your opportunities.
  2. What kind of job do you want? Identify a career and position that matches your skills, interests, abilities, and personality. The AU Career Center can help you better identify what type of job you want through coaching sessions.
  3. What organizations/companies interest you? Use an Internet online database to locate current employer web sites and contact information and possible openings with your employer of choice.


STEP 2: Get to know your targets

Do your research.

  1. Research geographic areas where that particular industry/organization is most prominent.
  2. Research career fields and employers by their:
  • Website
  • Books related to the field or industry of choice
  • Employees - interview people in that field or industry in person or by phone.
  • Newsletters and or articles about the organization

Research is key when conducting a job search. Many employers/companies/ organizations do not post their job openings on databases, but instead, on their web site. You can also identify needs within the companies through current news stories or other published articles like industry magazines or journals. Overall, research can allow you to feel more in control of your job search.


STEP 3: Time to connect

This is the moment of truth and there are several ways in which to contact and connect with prospective employers and to find job openings.

  • Online Job Boards: A list of online resources and the most popular  job board/websites can be found in the Online Career Resources section of our website. Websites like the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the O'net Online not only allow you to get comprehensive information about the particular field of position you're interested in, but also post up-to-date job opportunities, salary averages, and job market projections.
  • Handshake: Handshake is the number one way for college students to find jobs and internships. Handshake allows students to discover and land jobs and internships, get direct messages from employers who want to hire you, connect with employers to learn more about their company, and get expert help from career-building resources and employer recommended by the Career Center. There are over 750 thousand employers actively searching for students on Handshake! Get information on how to access your free Handshake account HERE.
  • Andrews Network is an online networking, mentoring and jobs board platform exclusive to the Andrews community. The Andrews Network provides a place where alumni can connect with each other and with current students. You control how involved you want to be—you can simply join and connect with a few classmates, or you can grow into an engaged mentor who offers advice and assistance to current students. As it is protected by a globally recognized privacy and security framework, you can rest assured that the Andrews Network is a secure platform. Continue scrolling below to read more about the features of the Andrews Network. All students are encouraged to register and actively become a user on the Andrews Network. Register here.
  • Andrews Agenda: The Classifieds section of the Andrews University Agenda provides job and internship postings open to AU students and is regularly updated. 
  • Career Fairs are excellent ways of connecting with employers and organizations with vacancies. Keep abreast of job fairs being held on campus through the Career Center's website.
  • Face-to-face: This is one of the most effective ways to contact an employer.  One method of face-to-face contact with an employer is through informational interviewing, which provides an efficient way to connect face to face with an employer without a job opening or interview in place. To schedule an informational interview with an employer, determine who is the best point of contact within the organization of interest, gather their contact details, craft a well-written email or letter introducing yourself and requesting the opportunity to meet with the employer to ask questions pertaining to the field and the company. If granted the informational interview, be sure to prepare relevan questions to guide your conversation. Also, be sure to bring along a copy of your resume to leave with the employer. Networking is another effective face-to-face method. Participate in networking opportunities offered by the university. You may also want to join professional associations and participate in their networking activities.
  • Phone: This is one of the most cost-effective ways to set up informational interviews, following up on job leads and applications. Be sure to practice proper phone etiquette when engaging with employers via phone.


STEP 4: Submit applications

  • Finding a job is a full-time commitment. Before beginning your job search, ensure that you have all the needed documents to begin submitting applications to positions of interest. Download the Career Packet and carefully review its contents to help you draft or update your documents. You may also schedule appointments with Career Coaches at the Career Center for assistance in drafting, updating and reviewing your documents. 
  • When submitting applications, be sure to carefully review the job descriptions for each position for which you apply. You will want to ensure that you tailor your resume, cover letter and other key application documents to reflect the key requirements noted in the job descriptions. Mirror key words where applicable. In the case of online applications, many companies employ software that automatically scans application documents for key words. Ensuring that you've incorporated the relevant key words on your application documents may be helpful in getting your application in front of a hiring manager. 
  • Be organized. Keep track of your applications. Create a database or spreadsheet noting important things such as each position applied for, the title, date applied, and closing application date. Noting the closing date will provide a timeframe for following up on your application. Add additional information such as application status (interviewed, offer provided etc.)
  • Be patient. The job search process can be wearying, but persistent and diligent effort will render positive results. 

For additional information on steps to take after you've been offered an interview and after you've received a job offer, visit the Interview Preparation section and Salary Negotiation section of our website.