Researching Employers

Sign with hand making caution signal

When we need a job, it can be tempting to accept an offer without knowing what we might really be getting into. Alluring job posts (sometimes arriving through social media and random emails) often look really attractive, promise a big financial return, or sound too good to be true. Sometimes, there are reasons to be wary.

As college students, this is where your research skills come in handy.  Here are some tips for vetting positions:

Compensation:  Research if the position is commission, based on sales, rather than a guaranteed salary. This is often the case in sales positions.  If the posting states high average sales, ask for local data or for a past or current employee.  Clarify the time commitment/income ratio to assess the fit with your availability and expectations.

Costs:  Some positions require upfront start-up or training cost.  Know explicitly what these are in full prior to agreeing to take the position. If information is not clearly presented, be wary.  There are some scams out there asking you send money in advance.  This is an indication it is not trust worthy situation.

Reputation: Check with others regarding their experience.  A few good resources include-
Glassdoor: employee feedback and ranking
Better Business Bureau: fraud reports and business practice complaints
LinkedIn:  UVM alums who have worked there can provide a more personal perspective

Trust your gut: If anything about the positions seems odd, pause and get more information. Talk to the employer, friends/family, or the Career Center staff.  An outside perspective can often help you decide if a position is a good fit fit for you.

As with any job search, it is essential to do your research to determine the fit of the organization, the position and potential red flags indicating more information is needed or caution is advised.  Getting the right position is key to your career success!


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