Monday, April 20, 2009

Competitive Job Market Calls for Competitive Candidates

Recently CareerBuilder released its Annual College Job Forecast (2009 edition). While this report delivered less than ideal news (no shocker, especially if you’ve been keeping up with reports coming from NACE) there was one really bright spot for athletes in this report.

CareerBuilder has labeled the 09’ job market as “The most competitive job market in years”. As an athlete if there is just one quality you possess that can help you through this market it is the competitive drive you acquired through athletic participation (but you will have to apply all of your competitive instincts in this market). So to get that competitive drive going has assembled the key takeaways from this report & provided you with the knowledge to act. Just like game preparation the better you know the opponent the better you can compete.

Listed below are the key facts with relevant articles & videos from to help you better understand how to navigate this market.

Forty-three percent of employers plan to hire recent college graduates in 2009, down from 56 percent in 2008 and 79 percent in 2007. (See college hiring falls 22%) (Internships down 21%)

More than one-in-five (21 percent) said they will decrease starting salaries for recent college graduates in 2009 as compared to 2008 (albeit only a 2.2% drop). An additional 68 percent of employers plan to keep initial salary offers the same as last year and 11 percent will increase them. (See Starting Salaries for class of 09’ drop)

Thirty-three percent of employers plan to offer recent college graduates starting salaries ranging between $30,000 and $40,000. An additional 17 percent will offer between $40,000 and $50,000 and 14 percent will offer more than $50,000. Thirty-six percent will offer less than $30,000.

"The biggest challenge is showing relevant experience, which employers say is one of the most important factors they look for in applications from recent college graduates.” This isn’t limited to professional work experience, so don’t get discouraged, class work, school activities and volunteering also qualify as relevant experience and can be included in your resume as well."

Employers reported that the following activities qualify as pertinent work experience for recent college graduates to include on their resumes:

(How to find your ideal internship) (Beginning the internship search)

Part-time jobs in another area or field

Volunteer work

(Listing volunteer experience) (How can I use volunteer work on my resume)

Involvement in school organizations

(How to list your involvement)

Class work

Involvement in managing activities for sororities and fraternitie

Participation in sports

(Really??? We think they’re on to something here!)
The Athletes Resume
How to position your transferable skills on a resume

When asked to identify the biggest mistakes recent college graduates make during the application and interview process, employers reported the following:

• Acting bored or cocky – 63%
• Not dressing appropriately – 61%
How to dress for an interview more on Interview Dress
• Coming to the interview with no knowledge of the company – 58%
Interview Tips
Athlete Interview Skilz
• Not turning off cell phones or electronic devices – 50%
• Not asking good questions during the interview – 49%
Interviewing the Interviewer
• Asking what the pay is before the company considered them for the job – 38%
• Spamming employers with the same resume and/or cover letter – 21%
Resumes- why you need two versions of your resume
Resume Optimization (building a resume to beat the internet)
• Failure to remove unprofessional photos/content on social networking pages, Web pages, blogs, etc. – 19%
Do I Pass the Google Test? More on the Google Test
• Not sending a thank you note after the interview – 12%

To help you get started check out the career postings on & get connected to companies that value the skills & attributes acquired through athletic play.


JobSearchNinja said...

Every applicant should look closely at their resume and make it stand out to be noticed by their prospective employer. To top the competition resume should be adequate and compelling.

Corporate Playbook said...

@JobSearchNinja right on! The right resume is critical in separating yourself from the competition. If you have any links you can share about this or other career development topics please do. Thanks!