Career: Job Outlook and Interview Tips

The job picture is looking a lot brighter for 2011--the best in three years. According to the latest survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), employers plan to hire 19.3% more grads than in 2010. There's also good news regarding salaries: they're up an average of 5.9% over 2010. And as we reported previously on ChEnected, the profession at the top of the list is none other than chemical engineering, with an average starting salary of $66,886.

Put your best foot forward

Particularly for those of you who are getting into the job market for the first time, here are some quick tips for interviewing:

  • You've heard it before, but it's really important: clean-up your social profiles! Employers are looking at you, too. What you friends might find enjoy won't necessarily amuse or impress prospective employers, so tidy up--and that includes pictures.
  • Punch up your experience and what you can offer and put it upfront on your resume, because employers will only look at each resume for maximum 30 seconds.
  • Learn about the company and industry. You can show you're really interested by simply showing up informed.
  • Include all of your internships on your resume, and be ready to offer details about class and team projects, too. When interviewing, it's always good to be ready to talk about a few relevant accomplishments and experiences that you're proud of.
  • Ask questions. Having a list of questions prepared in your head is a great idea, because asking smart, informed questions is a good way to impress prospective employers.
  • Remember to turn off your cell to show the interviewer they have your full attention.
  • Dress for the interview.
  • Send a thank-you note after your interview: in a recent survey, one in five employers said this is important!

For more job-search and career information, check out ChEnected's Careers Page. For further details about the NACE survey and more tips on interviewing, click here.

What's the best interview tip you can offer?


May's picture

All very good tips. I want to emphasize the power of networking. Your schooling will open the door to the industry; however, the hard work is not over yet. Continue to learn, ask questions and network! Congrats class of 2011!