Ask Vicki: How much does the time gap between graduation and your first job matter?
In this answer on Quora, Monster career expert Vicki Salemi explains how to make your post-graduation days count.
Each week, Monster’s career expert Vicki Salemi—a former recruiter who utilizes 15-plus years of experience in recruiting and human resources to empower job seekers—answers user questions on Quora. We’ll be republishing the answers here. If you have a question for Vicki, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. How much does the time gap between graduation and your first job matter?
A. Overall, it doesn’t matter too much. What matters most is how well you spent that time.
I can say that from experience—I landed my first full-time job five months after a May college graduation! At the time, it felt like a really long time, but in hindsight, not so much. I worked at a temp agency the entire summer and then ramped up my job search in the fall.
Whether you get a job by July, November, or even January, what matters is how you speak about that downtime during a job interview.
It’s perfectly OK to say you felt burned out after graduating and needed a breather and then while you looked for a job, you honed your French speaking skills, traveled, started volunteering, started working part-time as a barista while you looked for that first job—you get the idea.
You need to show you did something valuable with your post-graduation time other than binging on Netflix. Upload your resume to Monster, and get your job search started!