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Career Planning and Development


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Emily Alford
Wells Library 264
1320 East Tenth Street
Indiana University
Bloomington, IN 47405
(812) 855-8155

Whether you are fresh out of high school, college, or looking to change careers, these resources will help you establish a needed boost towards reaching your goals. 

Job Openings? Where should I look?

When looking for jobs there are many places and tools that you can use that will help you find out who is hiring. Well, there are dedicated websites that showcase job openings for various companies. Another place to look for jobs is to go to the companies website and find their employment section and see if they have any openings. A third place to looks for job openings is through asking people and seeing if they know any openings where they work, or if they have heard about anything that may be of interest. Here are some resources and tips that may be beneficial in finding job openings: 

Websites promoting jobs: 

*Viewing job openings and creating an account through these websites is completely free*



Zip Recruiter



It is important to know that not all companies put their job openings on these websites. So if there is a company or organization that you want to work with visit their websites, or find their phone numbers and call and inquire about openings. 

Understanding the "Hidden Market"

The "Hidden Market" is an area of job searching that isn't readily open to the public. Check out this website to learn more about it: 

What is the "Hidden Market"? 

Tips and Advice on Finding a Job

Locating Companies that are Hiring

Finding Jobs Online and Offline

Changes in the Job Market

Creating a resume, CV, and a cover letter

What is a resume? 

A resume is a document that details your education, previous or current experiences, and skills that are relevant and important to the job that you are applying for. A resume can be used for varies opportunities as well, such as internships and volunteer opportunities. Typically resumes are one page, as they are excerpts of your experiences in relation to the job that you are applying for. Here are some resources that may be beneficial in building a resume: 

Basics to formatting/writing a resume - examples provided

Writing a resume fresh out of high school

Writing a resume fresh out of college

Writing a resume with no experience

How long should a resume be?

Words choices that will benefit your resume

How to make your resume stand out

Knowing what to put on a job-specific resume

What is a CV?

A CV, or a curricula vitae, it is a longer document that is pretty similar to a resume. The difference is that with a CV the length does not matter because it details your entire career of experiences. That includes all education, all jobs, all volunteering opportunities, all skills you may have required. The function of a CV is to show your growth and other opportunities that you have had in life that are not entirely able to fit on a resume. Employers may ask for a resume or CV, but you would only have to provide one, unless specified. Here are some resources that may be beneficial in building a CV:

How to write a CV - with examples

How to format a CV - with examples and tips

What's the difference between a resume and a CV?

What is a cover letter?

A cover letter is another document that you may be asked to provide when applying for a job. A cover letter function is to complement the resume or CV, as it is your way to present the experiences and skills on those documents in a more organized format. A cover letter gives you the opportunity to explain experiences to the employer before they decide on whether or not to give you an interview, and the opportunity to describe why you really want the job. Typically a cover letter follows this format: 

1. State what position you are applying and how you found out about the opening

2. Explain how your experiences and skills are relevant to the position

3. Explain why you would be a good candidate and how you could contribute to the company or staff based on your skills.

4. Restate why you are applying and state that you look forward to hearing from them. 

Of course not all cover letters have to follow that format, but that is the basic outline of most cover letters. Check out these resources that could be beneficial to drafting and polishing a cover letter: 

What is a cover letter and why would you need one? 

When and when not to include a cover letter

How to write a cover letter

What is the length of a cover letter?

Massive Open Online Courses

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are free classes that can enroll in. They provide a flexible and affordable way to increase and gain new skills. MOOCs can be used for a variety of reasons such as: career development, college preparation, changing jobs, job training, and life log l learning. (source:

Two ways to access classes: 

1. Free auditing: grants access to videos, readings, and class forums. 

2. Paid enrollment: grants access to all content (videos, readings, class forums) as well as paywall elements such as a certificate and class assignments. You can apply for financial aid or scholarships for MOOCs, which can help you earn a certificate for free or at discounted rate. Some websites that MOOCs are run through offer scholarships or financial aid. (source:

Places to find MOOCs:

There are definitely others, but this is a good start to see the different website variety.


Networking is an important aspect of the career world, especially if you are looking to change careers or get your foot in the door. It is not as scary as it seems, as networking is as simple as talking to another person. In fact, networking can be defined as "the action or process of interacting with others to exchange information and develop professional  or social contacts". (source: Google Dictionary) Check out these resources for some tips and advice on networking: 

Networking Anecdotes from Business Professionals

How to Network for Shy People

Tips for Networking at an Event

Tips for Networking in General

LinkedIn is a popular networking website that could be considered the Facebook of the business world. LinkedIn can be used to find job openings, internships, and volunteer opportunities all over the world. You can build a resume on it, have others write recommendations, and endorse your skills. Another feature is that you can potentially reach out to anyone and ask them about their business life and how they got to that point in their career and then connect with them. Your "friends" are now your "connections" and are a part of your network. Like other social media sites, there is a news feed, and on this news feed you can list your accomplishments, talk about an opportunity you have coming up, or make a post that you are seeking a job opportunity. LinkedIn is completely free as well.

While LinkedIn presents itself as the designated networking website, you can definitely network on any social media website such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, etc. For example, on Twitter you can follow a company and see what they talk about, and see how they promote themselves, and interact with them by commenting on their post or retweeting them. 

Guide created by:

Mariah Isbell, IU Libraries Reference Assistant