Moraine Valley Community College || Job Resource Center - Resources - Advice for Success

Advice for Success

At our Job and Internship Fair and Mock Interview Day events, we asked employers what they are looking for and we asked job seekers about their experience at the event. Take advantage and take it to the next level by gleaning from hiring professionals.

Valuable Feedback from Employers and Participants:
Mock Interview Day at MVCC — Valuable Feedback from Employers

Valuable Feedback from Employers and Participants:
Job and Internship Fair

Employer Advice
Employer Luncheon, Job and Internship Fair, Spring 2013

What characteristics are most valuable in a candidate?
Dresses for success, punctuality, takes initiative, professionalism, commitment, integrity (pride in job/ownership), maturity, willingness for continuous improvement, enthusiastic, motivated, proactive and gracious.

In the next year, how much do you anticipate your hiring needs increasing at your organization?
78 percent of employers surveyed responded that their hiring will be increasing
22 percent of employers surveyed responded their hiring needs will stay the same

Green jobs are positions that produce goods or provide services that benefit the environment or conserve natural resources. Does your organization have a green initiative? Have jobs been created as a result of this initiative?
58 percent of employers surveyed indicated their organization has a green initiative
35 percent of employers surveyed indicated green jobs have been created as a result of this initiative

Does your organization have an initiative for hiring veterans?
54 percent of employers surveyed responded that they have an initiative for hiring veterans

Do you utilize social media (i.e., LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter) for recruiting and hiring?
50 percent of employers surveyed responded that they utilize social media in their hiring practices

Did your organization hire through Moraine Valley Job and Internship Fair?
57 percent of employers surveyed responded hired through the past Job and Internship Fair

What do we need to know to better prepare job seekers for the world of work?

  • A Polished Resume
    Employers receive hundreds upon hundreds of resumes and applications. Make sure your resume/application is polished. Employers can tell if a resume looks really generic and if someone is mass emailing their resume to hundreds of prospective employers. It makes it look like you don't really care about getting the job."
  • Following Directions is a Must
    Many employers are posting very specific instructions within their job listings. They do this partly to see how well people follow directions — and partly to narrow things down more easily.
  • Follow through Immediately
    When meeting an employer at a Job Fair ask them for their business card and follow up the next day. Employers remember the job seekers that stand out!
  • Do Your Research
    It is always advisable to do your homework on the prospective employer. Look for its mission statement and how the position you want relates to that mission. The employer will be impressed.
  • First Impressions
    Introduce yourself and show sincere interest in the company by asking thoughtful questions that will trigger a discussion. Be concise, polite and direct. Never leave empty-handed. As your discussion wraps up, request a business card or write down the recruiter's name (get the correct spelling), title and preferred means of contacting them. If you have made a successful connection with an employer, also ask about the next steps. Will they follow up or should you? Is there anything you can do or provide (such as work samples, transcripts) to help in the decision-making process?"

Some students are lost when using Web-based applications. What is an acceptable amount of time to wait before I phone an employer, without being too persistent?
Usually one to one and a-half weeks after submitting resume and application. Also, when calling an employer the first question to ask is the status of the position.

Employers are looking for:

Basic Skills
Reading, writing, mathematics, communication, computers/typing, technology savvy

Critical Thinking Skills
Know how to learn, reason/analytical skills, think creatively, make decisions, solve problems, organizational skills

Interpersonal Skills
Team player, positive disposition, flexible/teachable, serve customers, leadership skills, understands professionalism, global awareness/perspective

Know How to Allocate
Time, money, materials, space, staff

Personal Qualities
Individual responsibility, creative, confident, self-management, sociability, integrity/honesty, relates well to others, strong work ethic, flexible/adaptable

Top 5 Criteria Influencing Hiring Decisions
Interviews well/Speaks and appears professional, relevant experience and/or skills, positive, professional attitude, critical thinking and communication skills, an understanding of what employer needs