By Inggrid Yonata
ROCKFORD - Lately, there's a lot of people looking for jobs and not many to go around. So how can you set yourself apart from the crowd?
Landing the job you want goes beyond having an impressive resume on hand. Graduating Rockford College senior Brad Pemberton II understands being flexible can raise his chances of getting a job. "I'm willing to move," Pemberton said. His dad also taught him networking is key. "He's always saying when I was younger, it's not what you know but who you know."
Kelly Haugen, Rockford College's Director of Career Services, said if you don't have the right connection, make one. "Through volunteering, they're getting to know you, they'll be able to look at your abilities and skills," she said. "And eventually when a position opens, they might consider hiring you for that position."
It may take months before you get a call after a job fair, but Haugen said use this time to learn a new skill or a new language while you wait. And when you land that interview, Haugen said, "Be professional from the get go, and when you meet secretaries, administrative assistants, be friendly and outgoing to them because you never know they might be a part of the interview process."
Lastly, experts said you have to look the part to give a lasting first impression. Haugen said, "I recently had a friend who was applying for a management job in a construction company. He was actually the only person that walked in there in a suit and they actually were very impressed with that."
Haugen also says make sure you learn about the company you're applying for. It can show your future employer that you are the right person for the job.
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