Finding a job is a combination of using effective job search strategies (networking, resumes, interviews) and finding job postings/openings. As you’ve likely heard, while some jobs are advertised, most are not (the “hidden job market”). This section lists ways you can develop your job search strategies (the next section What's out there? will list resources for job positions and employment programs).
Stand out in your job applications
- Workshops: Resume, Cover Letter, Interviews – these workshops will focus on strategies to stand out throughout the job application process.
- Tipsheets: Resume, Cover Letter, Interviews – the tipsheets provide quick ideas for writing your application documents and navigating the interview.
- Examples – find examples from real Queen’s students in our online magazines – Queen’s Best Resumes and Cover Letters
- Resume/Cover Letter Review Appointments – once you have a draft, bring it to an appointment to review it with a Resume Coach
Highlight skills in application
Employers want to know what skills you bring – use the Queen’s Skills Cards to assess and articulate your skills.
- Queen’s Skill Cards & Skills Sorter – Define, highlight, and describe your current skills and target skills for further development. The Skills Sorter provides a virtually interactive experience with the cards. A .pdf version is also available.
- Scatterplot Handout – Relevance vs Proficiency (PDF, 61 KB)
Find job openings
How to network to find job opportunities that are not posted publicly
First, fine tune your networking skills
- Workshops: Networking, LinkedIn 1 & 2
- Information Interviews tipsheet: Strategies to effectively connect with someone who’s in a role or at the organization you’re interested in learning more about.
Second, research employers of interest
Third, find professional communities
Getting involved in professional communities allows you to build relationships with people from a specific population who may have information about opportunities that might interest you.
- Queen’s Connects: access our Student and Alumni Network Group on LinkedIn to connect with alumni to gather information about your career goals and assist your job search.
- Queen’s University Alumni Association (QUAA): see what alumni events are coming up and reach out to them directly if you’d like to volunteer and build your professional network!
- National Industry Organizations: use this list of national associations and organizations from various industries in Canada to explore industry specific events, opportunities, and companies.
- Canadian Associations and Affiliates (Non-Profit Sector): with this list, explore non-profit associations and affiliates both nationally and internationally.
Tools you can use to encourage employers to hire you
Depending on the type of work you are looking for, there may be funding options to help employers. These are usually in the form of a wage subsidy – meaning the employer gets funding for part of your salary, usually for a specific period of time. There are currently several wage subsidy programs available. You could look through the options, and if there are any that could apply to the work you want to do, when you are speaking with employers you could let them know about the funding opportunity/ies. This might help make it easier for them to hire. If you are reaching out and connecting with prospective employers, it might be worth considering the wage subsidies that the employer might be eligible for. Including information about the benefits of these wage subsidies could make employment more feasible for the employer. Each wage subsidy has unique eligibility criteria and reimbursement criteria.
When preparing to connect with employers about wage subsidies, think about these strategies:
- What questions do you anticipate the employer might ask you? Can you find an answer before speaking with them?
- Are there any ways you can reduce the amount of work an employer would be required to do to complete the wage subsidy? For example, can you clearly outline what they would be required to do to make an application?
- Are your ready to provide a short, targeted summary of the benefits of this wage subsidy for the employer and what makes you eligible?
- Are you able to identify the employer’s current needs for their company? How will you align yourself with those needs when exploring a potential opportunity? And if you don’t yet know this, how could you get more information, either through your network, or during a conversation with the employer?
Request accommodations or disclosing personal information
- Tipsheets: Disclosure and Accommodations – in these tipsheets, you will learn about why, when, and how to disclose private, personal information and to request accommodations related to a variety of factors including disability, religion, and age.
- Career Consultation Appointment: We provide a safe space to explore how to approach your unique situation one-on-one with a Career Counsellor.