Looking for your first job can be confusing. It’s hard to know what to search for, and even if you do find a job that looks interesting, it’s hard to tell if you have the required experience to actually land the job. If you’re a college student or a new college grad, then you’re in the right place. We’re going to take a look at the intricacies of what “entry level” really means, and help you figure out how to determine what companies really mean when they list experience requirements on a job posting.
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What Does “Entry Level” Mean?
The only word that is commonly used to to identify jobs that are suited for new college graduates is “entry level.” Many companies use the term, but there are just as many that don’t. Here’s the definition from Wikipedia:
An entry-level job is a job that generally requires little skill and knowledge, and is generally of a low pay. These jobs may require physical strength or some on-site training. Many entry-level jobs are part-time, and do not include employee benefits. Recent graduates from high school or college usually take entry-level positions.
Entry-level jobs which are targeted at college graduates often offer a higher salary. These positions are more likely to require specific skills and knowledge. Most entry-level jobs offered to college graduates are full-time permanent positions.
As you can see, there are really two definitions. For this reason searching for “entry level jobs” often won’t yield the results that you’re looking for. You’ll come across too many jobs that you’re overqualified for because you have a college degree, and you’ll also miss out on all the jobs from companies who don’t call their jobs “entry level.” You can try searching job boards that only list entry level jobs for new college grads, but those also offer limited options. The only way to consistently find great career opportunities at companies that are willing to hire new college graduates is to learn how to read between the lines in a job description.
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