Job Search Tools and Tips

Interested in applying for a position at ITS? Here are some tips and tricks to succeed in your job search, prepared by Stephanie Henyard and members of the Information and Technology Services team.


Think of your LinkedIn profile as a constant work in progress, so don’t stress out about making it perfect.

  • Update your profile picture.
  • Add your education, work experience, certifications, and skills. Don’t be afraid to reach out to colleagues for skill endorsements!
  • Write a summary of who you are as an employee and where you’re going.
  • Network! Connect with people you’ve worked (or volunteered) with directly, join groups, follow companies and topics. In addition to job postings, your LinkedIn community is where you can find opportunities to be an expert outside of your current work situation, such as public speaking or writing an article.
  • As with any social media account, manage your account and privacy settings to protect your information.

LinkedIn Learning and Michigan Online

U-M faculty, staff, and students have access to LinkedIn Learning and Michigan Online at no-cost.

  • Connect your LinkedIn Learning history to your personal LinkedIn accounts.
  • Courses to help prepare for interviews, build a resume, write a cover letter.
  • Self-paced courses that build on each other and can often result in a certificate.


Find your people. Join the interest groups relevant to your role/job/career.

  • Any kind of working or interest group is a great way to not only keep informed, but also build community. Hearing what others are going through, seeing what challenges they face and how they approach them can be really validating when you realize that you have the same problem and maybe you already fixed it.
  • Regular exposure helps to keep in touch with your own craft, and to understand how skilled you really are, even if it doesn't always feel like that.
  • Some examples include U-M IT Communities of Practice, Educause Working Groups, and Nonprofit Technology Network Communities.

Bring Jobs To You


  • Make sure your resume is legible, typo-free, and easy to read.
  • Tailor your resume to the type of job you want, and look for opportunities to use the same terminology that is used in the job description.
  • Include the specific skills and certifications you have that are called for in the job description -- but don't let the lack of one stop you from applying.
  • If possible, use metrics to show a measurement of what you've been able to accomplish.

Cover Letter

  • Write a cover letter that addresses why you're good for the job and why you want to work for that team or organization in particular.
  • If there are a few types of jobs you’re open to, have a cover letter for each type.
  • Proofread your letter and make sure your name, the job title, the department, and the company name are in there and correct.


  • When you find a job, apply early -- even if you don’t have 100% of the qualifications!
  • Create a document or PDF for each job application, where page 1 is your cover letter and pages 2 & 3 are your resume.
  • Manually re-enter the information from your resume into the recruiting system if you are asked to do so.
  • Save a copy of the full description and put that, along with your resume, into your files -- this is helpful to refer back to when you’re invited to an interview.


Before the interview:

  • Review the job posting that you saved to your files and write down questions to ask about the company, the department, the position duties, and what it takes to be successful in the role.
  • Research the company and the people you will be interviewing with.
  • Look over your own resume and cover letter. Identify what things you told them make you good for the job, and think of ways to highlight that.
  • Have 3-4 examples and stories ready to tell. Be strategic in which ones you use.

During the interview:

  • Remember that it’s a two-way conversation: they’re determining if they want to work with you, and you’re determining if you want to work with them.
  • Take notes! Listen closely, and when it’s your turn to speak you’ll remember exactly what you wanted to ask about.
  • Ask for clarification if you don't fully understand the question.
  • When it is your turn to ask questions, think about what you truly care about in a work environment and ask questions to determine if this would be a place where you'd be set up to thrive.

After the interview:

  • Send a brief thank you email to everyone you interviewed with as soon as possible after your interview.