Personal Career Growth

Career Growth
The Washington University in St. Louis Career Center continues to provide resources for improving job search skills even after students have graduated. See our Career Tools section for more information on how to improve your resume and cover letter, portfolio, networking and interview skills. You can also find more online resources or schedule an advising appointment by calling (314) 935-5930.

Finding Positions

Below are a variety of external resources to aid you in your job search. Job search sites and search firms are both great places to direct you to available positions.

Job search sites include posted positions and are used by companies to source candidates. Sites can be both general and industry specific. Below is a sample of some job search sites.

General sites include:
Simply Hired
The Ladders (100K+ positions)            

Industry-specific sites include:
American Banker            
The Green Careers Center             
ComputerJobs with JobServe
Volunteering and Nonprofit Careers 

Search Firms

Search firms are paid by the hiring organization and find candidates through postings and proactive sourcing. These fall into two categories:

  • Contingency Firms are hired to find specific skill sets; a fee is paid by the employer when a candidate is placed.

  • Retained Firms are hired to find high-end, executive-level candidates; a fee is paid by the employer as a retainer, regardless of the final placement of the candidate. Keep in mind that if you are hired through a retained firm, the hiring organization is responsible for a “hiring fee” that they pay the search firm. If you decide to use a search firm, it is your responsibility to verify the credentials of the search firm with which you work.

Temporary/Contract Work
Many organizations specialize in temporary and/or contract workers, including Kelly Services, Robert Half, Accountemps, Ajilon, Spherion, Manpower, etc. You can search for a larger list of these organizations on Google or research databases such as Hoovers.

These positions fall into two categories:

  • Temporary positions are limited in length, used perhaps to fill in for an employee on vacation or complete a project.
  • Contract positions could have an end date or be more open, depending on the role. These positions might request specific skills and technical abilities.

Search Skills Resources
Below are some recommended external resources such as books and websites that can help you hone your job search skills.

Job Search Books

  • Change your Job, Change Your Life: Careering and Re-careering in the New Boom/Bust Economy, Ron Krannich, Ph.D.
  • What Color is Your Parachute? A Practical Manual for Job Hunters & Career Changers, Richard Nelson Bolles

Interviewing Skills Books

  • The 250 Job Interview Questions, Peter Veruki
  • Winning Job Interviews: Reduce Interview Anxiety/Outprepare the Other Candidates/Land the Job You Love, Paul Powers

Networking Books

  • Dig Your Well Before You're Thirsty: The Only Networking Book You’ll Ever Need, Harvey Mackey
  • Highly Effective Networking: Meet the Right People and Get a Great Job, Orville Pierson

Resume Books

  • Resume Magic: Trade Secrets of a Professional Resume Writer, Susan Britton Whitcomb
  • Gallery of Best Resumes: A Collection of Quality Resumes by Professional Resume Writers, David F. Noble

Cover Letter Books

  • Gallery of Best Cover Letters: A Collection of Quality Cover Letters by Professional Resume Writers, David F. Noble
  • Adams Cover Letter Almanac, Richard Wallace

Search Firms Reference Book

  • Directory of Executive Recruiters, Kennedy Information

Online Resources

  • LinkedIn, a business professional networking site where you create a business profile.
  • Facebook, a social avenue but can also be used to network. A professional business profile is recommended.