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Job hunting tips for college grads

Employers in fields like financial services, healthcare and technology are hiring, in some cases more than usual.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Unemployment is at historic highs, reaching the worst rate since the Great Depression.

In addition to the people who’ve lost their jobs, recent college grads are looking to enter the workforce.

Similarly to how their college careers ended, the job search is looking a lot different these days. But there are still many opportunities out there.

Alicia Sleight is the regional vice president of staffing services at Robert Half. She said grads might need to be more flexible.

Although some industries, like the service industry, are suffering, others are thriving. Employers in fields like financial services, healthcare and technology are hiring, in some cases more than usual.

As restrictions ease, companies are starting their reentry plans. That means the job market is picking up, and postings are already starting to increase.

“It's really important the class of 2020 really expands their horizons when it comes to looking at their job search, and remember it's all about gaining experience and getting your foot in the door,” Sleight said. “If there's a specific industry that they're passionate about, or a specific role, it might not be exactly how they planned. But as long as they can kind of expand their search, they should be successful.”

Sleight said the top jobs for 2020 grads include customer service, help desk, web developer and entry level accounting roles.

She also said to start networking now. Don’t put your job search on pause; you can pivot into your desired industry when it comes back.

When it comes to those virtual interviews, Sleight said it’s as important as ever to emphasize soft skills. Those are interpersonal skills, like communication and teamwork.

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