Getting a Job is a Game of Inches

When employers hire, they are often considering multiple qualified candidates and sometimes it’s the candidate who “wants it the most” who gets the job.  Here are just a few things you can do demonstrate your motivation for a position.

  • Ask around – Before you apply for a position, check with the CDO, your professors, past supervisors and your classmates to see if anyone has a connection to  the employer.  They may have “inside info” on the employer that you can incorporate and they might even be able to put in a good word for you.
  • Follow up – Every time you apply for a job, contact the employer within a week to confirm receipt of your application and to reiterate your interest. You can do this by phone or email, but either way, keep it short, friendly and upbeat.
  • Send a prompt thank you note – Right after your interview, be sure to send a thank you note to the employer.  If the employer will be making a quick hiring decision, an email is best.  If you have more time, most legal employers prefer a short handwritten note.
  • Ask your references to contact the employer – Employers value third-party affirmation of job candidates.
  • Follow up one more time – At the end of an interview, ask the employer what the next steps in their hiring process will be and when you might anticipate hearing back.  Then, as the decision date approaches, reach out to the employer one more time just to reiterate your interest and offer to provide any additional information that would be helpful to them.
    Remember, getting a job is a “game of inches” and candidates who do “all the little things” increase their odds of getting the job!
By Eric Bono
Eric Bono Assistant Dean for Career Opportunities Eric Bono