University of Wisconsin-Madison
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Connecting UW Students and Employers

Research Employers

Please note: If you are already in a major, your home career services office may have major-specific career resources to aid you in your search. Search by your major or career word for the appropriate career services office:

Haven't chosen a major? The Cross-College Advising Service and Exploration Center can help you find a fit.

The quality of your employer targeting and research determines much of your job search success.

Long before your first interview, target employers with the greatest potential and desire to actually hire you! In fact, complete employer research starts immediately after resume writing and serves as a major component of effective cover letters/e-mails. In order to elicit employer interest, a strong letter matching your skills and accomplishments to specific employer needs must be developed.

After creating a targeted list of employers, you will use your time more effectively by exploring opportunities with only those employers whose needs match your qualifications. Remember: the quality of your employer research directly determines your success in the job search.

By now, you should clearly see the links between all elements of the job search. Each building block is directly linked to the success of other job search components. A thorough skills assessment and understanding of accomplishments leads to an excellent resume, serves as a basis for cover letters and E-mails, helps identify target employers for contact, and ultimately improves your interviewing skills, hopefully leading to job offers.

Conducting Employer Research

What to Find:

Products or services, major competitors, customers, current conditions, market niche and share, parent company, leading-edge projects, growth goals, training programs, locations, job descriptions, career paths

Where to find it:

Sources: Career Services office, Chambers of Commerce, professional associations, newspapers and journals, local career services, major specific links

Networking: Alumni, professors, co-op/intern students, research contacts, consortium contacts, family and friends

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