Getting a Job


The American work market is one of the most competitive in the world. The demands of this job market push people to become better educated, in order to have a better chance to obtain a high paying job with excellent benefits. Every year thousands of new college graduates enter the workforce. Different kinds of jobs require different sets of skills; white-collar jobs require more education and preparation than blue-collar jobs, and there are many fields and industries in need of skilled managers. When immigrants come to the America and seek a professional job, they can encounter difficulties with their credentials, due to the fact that degrees earned in other countries are not always recognized in the US. To acquire a job at a professional level, immigrants often have to return to school and re-earn their degrees from American colleges or universities.

There are some steps that you should take before you begin job-hunting. First, you need to prepare your resume, which represents you on paper. Your resume is a summary of all your qualifications and work experience. Although There are many different kinds of resumes, the most common types utilize the chronological or functional formats. In a chronological resume, your work experience is listed in reverse chronological order starting with your most recent job. In a functional resume, your skills and accomplishments are outlined rather than dates of employment. This format is advisable when the job seeker has changed jobs frequently or has not been working consistently. If you do not have work experience to list in your resume, you can get experience by offering your services as an unpaid volunteer or intern. To list a position on your resume as work experience, you should have worked at that position for at least six months.

After finishing your resume, you will also need to work on your cover letter, which is a brief outline of your employment goals and qualifications that accompanies your resume. A cover letter can also represent a formal way to request an in-person job interview. Once you have both “resume and cover letter” ready, you should carefully proofread them or have somebody else do it for you, because it is very important that your resume be free of typos, spelling mistakes, and grammatical and punctuation errors. Prospective employers will get their first impression of you, and judge you by the quality of your resume, and a poorly written resume will likely result in you not getting an interview or a job.

When you have completed your resume and your cover letter, it is time to begin your job search. You can start by checking newspapers, and websites where jobs are advertised. You can also look on the website of any particular company you may want to work for, or attempt to find job leads by doing some networking, which means talking with people you know in order to meet more people in the field you are interested in. If you would like faster results in your job search, you might try working with a paid headhunter in order to land an appropriate job. Finally, remember to always keep improving your skills in order to keep pace and stay competitive in the ever-changing job market.

Vocabulary and Expressions

Competitive = determined by competition.
Workforce = the number of workers (available for work) in a particular industry, factory.
Excellent = remarkably good.
White-collar = workers whose work usually does not involve manual labor and who are often expected to dress with a degree of formality.
Blue-collar = pertaining to wage-earning workers who wear work clothes or other specialized clothing on the job, as mechanics, longshoremen, miners, laborers, etc.
Degree = Education. An academic title conferred by universities and colleges as an indication of the completion of a course of study.
Recognized = acknowledged or accepted formally.
Job-hunting = to do job search, to look for a job.
Resume = a brief written account of personal, educational, and professional qualifications and experience.
Summary = information presented in a brief and condense form.
Qualifications = qualities, abilities or accomplishments that make a person suitable for a position or task.
Chronological = arranged in order of time.
Accomplishments = something completed successfully, an achievement.
Job seeker = person looking for a job.
Volunteer = a person who performs a service willingly and without pay.
Brief = here, short and concise statement or written item.
Proofread = to read in order to detect and mark errors to be corrected.
Typos = typographical errors.
Newspaper ads = advertisement posted in the newspaper.
Networking = here, to interact or engage in informal communication with others for mutual assistance or support.
Headhunter = a personnel recruiter for a corporation or executive recruitment.

Conversation Activities

1. Do you think it is easy to find a job? Why?
2. Do you have a resume? What format do you use for you resume?
3. According to your personal experience what is the best way to get a job?
4. Do you go to employment agencies or headhunters in order to get a job?
5. Why do you think that degrees from other countries are not recognized in the U.S.?