Should You Ready Your Résumé? Or Not?


Now that it’s August, college students are likely beginning to think about heading to their respective campuses. For seniors, it can be a bittersweet moment. After bidding home goodbye, you’ll head back to school for your last year—at least as an undergrad.

But while you may be finishing up your final summer internship, the job search is far from over (unless you’re among the lucky few who got a job offer!). A LearnVester recently tweeted us for advice:

@ChelleMcNeill: When is it best for graduating seniors (2012) to post résumés for first jobs?

The answer: as soon as possible.

Two executives with laptops in office, woman resting chin on hand

Here’s why.

  1. Senior year will fly by, and you’ll want to have as much time as possible to find and compare different job options.
  2. You’ll still be able to use your college’s career services.
  3. Some recruiters come early, as early as one or two weeks into the semester. You’ll want your résumé to be polished and updated to reflect your latest job experiences and skills.
  4. Many fellowship opportunities have deadlines in the fall, so getting your résumé ready early is necessary in order to apply.
  5. You’ll be able to network through the year with both visiting recruiters and professors.

But if you don’t have an offer in hand when you leave campus in May, don’t fret. Some industries like publishing or advertising begin recruiting nearer to (or after) graduation and only want you to apply for a job at most two weeks before you can start working.

Conclusion: Start early so you can be ready, but make sure your résumé stays updated throughout the year to reflect your most recent job experience and skills. Take the time to research all of your options, and apply as you find opportunities.

But don’t panic if you don’t get a job before your graduate; there will still be plenty of opportunities, and you’ll have more time over the summer to concentrate fully on your job search.