Students of every college worth its tuition fees are told over and over again that they should plan for their career as early as possible. You have heard how important internships are, how you should never skip an opportunity to network, and how skill development plays a crucial role in finding a job after graduation. It would be easy to assume that students today are well prepared for what awaits them after they have finished their programs.
But the numbers say something different. Only a third of students manage to walk straight into their careers after finishing college. The rest either struggle through the first half of their twenties or spend the most of the third decade of their lives trying to start a career. And you could name a dozen reasons why it might be so — the degree inflation, the shifting job market, personal shortcomings are only some of them. But asking yourself “why” won’t do you much good. Instead, you should focus on turning things around and doing what you can to increase your chances of landing a good job. And that’s where having a website can be useful.
The Importance of Your Online Presence
Our generation has grown up with social media presence as a normal part of our lives. You probably have accounts on several different social networks, and you are also probably aware that what you share can sometimes come back to haunt you. Well, sometimes the haunting comes in the form of a recruiter who, after seeing your pictures of doing something stupid, decided not to pursue you for a job.
This happens more often than you might think. More than a half of recruiters saw something on candidates’ social media pages that made them avoid hiring a candidate. The usual culprits were posts containing inappropriate or provocative photos, posts that alluded to alcohol and drug use, and posts that contained discriminatory comments. That’s how important your online presence can be for your future. That’s also why you need to be careful about what you post, and what other people comment on your posts.
How Websites Help
But social media isn’t everything recruiters use to check you out. They also routinely turn to search engines to find out things about their candidates. So why shouldn’t your own website be one of the very first things that come up in the search results when they type in your name? Learning how to build an effective website might take some time, but it’s not impossible. WordPress makes building websites incredibly easy. You’ll also need to learn a thing or two about WordPress hosting. But as a fresh college graduate, you should be accustomed to learning new things.
The benefits you get for your efforts can be great. If you take the time to create a beautiful website, you can cast yourself in the best possible light. You can take charge of your own narrative by writing a great resume, a general cover letter, and some clever copy that will make the recruiter want to give you a chance. And don’t forget about relevant content — your website can also be a blog. You can post content that showcases your strengths and passions and gives the recruiters an insight into your personality as well as your industry knowledge.
The Digital Portfolio
The group of graduates who get the most benefits from having a website is the creatives. The writers, the photographers, the designers, anyone who wants to work in a creative industry. If you are one of them, your website is where you can build your portfolio.
If you are looking for a career in web design, your website itself will become a portfolio. For other types of creative professions, you can either upload your work products onto the website or use it as a hub for links to other hosting services such as YouTube. Either way, you make sure that a recruiter gets a taste of your skills when they search for your online.
On the off chance you decide to develop your website more, it can become a source of income. Some people make money off their blogs, for example, or use their websites to sell their products or services. You will need to be a self-starter if you want to make it though, but it’s certainly an option that might be worthy of pursuing. And don’t forget that you are developing additional skills while you’re looking for ways to build your website, make it rank well, and appear professional and streamlined. Just make sure that you don’t share too much personal information, like your address. And don’t forget to leave enough contact information for recruiters to get in touch with you.
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