Searching for a job is often related to dating. The first interview is often like a first date- the candidate and company are looking to learn more about each other to see if this could be a long-term fit. Candidates and hiring managers will each have a checklist of items of what they are looking for in this match. As chemical recruiters, we are often able to help clients and candidates define those boxes to check and discover pairs that will last long term. When you are looking for a job that you will love, make sure to check off these boxes when assessing opportunities:

Define your must-haves and nice to haves

When you think of your dream job, what does it entail? Think about the responsibilities you’d like to have, the skillsets you would like to acquire, and the work culture that you would feel most at home in. Is the location a deal-breaker or would you consider relocating? Consider where you would like to be in the next steps of your career and how to get there. Define what your career goals are and what you would need in a job to be able to achieve those goals. Create a checklist of these items. Break those out into your must-haves and nice to haves. The must-haves are the items that are non-negotiable for you to accept an opportunity. If relocation is not an option, then a local opportunity would be a must-have. Nice to haves are items that would be nice but not something that would cause you to absolutely turn down an opportunity. This could be something like preferring to work from home but still being open to an onsite or hybrid role. Refer back to your checklist throughout the interviewing process.

Interviewing the company

When you are interviewing with a company, the interview should work both ways; you should also be interviewing the company to see if it is a good fit for you. Have questions prepared. These can help get clarity on exactly what the responsibilities of this role are and what the expectations will be. Ask questions like what will be expected within the first 60-90 days and who does this role interact with? Dig in deeper to understand what the company does past what is defined on their website. Ask the hiring manager and others that you speak with why they chose to join the company and what has kept them there- we call this the “sizzle” for the company. Don’t forget to ask questions about the company culture. Is it a collaborative environment? Is there flexibility and what does the work-life balance look like? Ask the supervisor of this role what their leadership style is. Not only should the interviewer feel confident in your skills and background by the end of the interview, but you should also have a clear understanding of the role, what the company does, who you will interact with, expectations, and what day-to-day life would look like. If there are still question marks on any of these, set up an additional interview or time to speak- this will be appreciated on both ends.

Finding a job you love will go deeper than what salary might be offered. Consider what you must see to accept an offer and what would be nice to add on to make you love the opportunity. Communication will be key to discovering answers to all of these areas. Working with a recruiter can give you a partner to help decipher questions and give clarity to finding a job that you will love.

-Written by Brooke Hughes: Researcher for Specialty Chemical Recruiters