How To Build A Career Plan – 6 Steps for Your Future Career Planning?

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The actions you can take to achieve your short- and long-term career objectives are outlined in a career plan. Career plans can help you decide which classes to take, and which extracurricular activities, research, and internships will help you stand out as a good candidate for a job. The steps listed below will help you create a career plan that is specific to your interests and goals. Do you still have queries? Make an appointment with a Career Advisor to begin or review your plan; we are here to assist.

Career planning is beneficial for everyone, regardless of whether they have been in the industry for some time or are just starting out. In addition, if you are a manager or team leader, encouraging your employees to plan their own careers can increase engagement and retention.

The essence of career planning is deciding what kind of work you want to do and where you want to do it. You will receive assistance with the remaining steps from this guide.


The process of deciding what you want to do with your life and how to get there is called career planning. It should not be a one-and-done activity; rather, it should be a process that you revisit frequently, particularly when you or the world has changed.

Planning one’s career might look different to each person. However, taking into account of your values and abilities is a great place to start. You can now begin looking into which career field, position, or position best fits your goals with that foundation. Assessment tests, professional coaching, educational programs, occupational training, and career planning are all options.

There is neither a “right” age nor a “wrong” time to begin career planning. When you finish high school, you should have an idea of what you want to do with your life. However, that need not be the case. Experience can be gained through entry-level positions, college, or vocational school. As you narrow down your career options, you can enhance your resume and network.

Career planning gives you a chance to think back on the highlights and challenges of your career thus far if you are a few years out of school. A good place to start is by looking at what you’ve already done and what you want to do more of.

How to build a career plan as a freshman?

Find out what you should do each year while attending college:

  • Find a part-time job on or off campus that is related to your career field or that will help you develop essential skills if you have declared a major. Utilize our FOCUS online assessment platform.
  • Visit professors during business hours. Meet as many of the faculty members as you can. When you need letters of recommendation in your senior year, this will come in very handy.
  • Take a vow to devote time to career advancement. Each week, set aside some time.
  • At least one club or career-related activity should be taken part in.
  • Volunteer at a group that interests you (volunteer work can be included on a resume).
  • Connect your career interests to your projects, papers, speeches, and assignments.
  • If you need help writing a resume, go to Career Services. Build your resume right now. Make changes to it at the conclusion of each semester; don’t try to remember everything you did!
  • If you want a job or an internship, go to the Career & Intern Expo. Every year, between 50 and 80 employers attend.) Get an internship or summer job in your field.
  • Attend Workshops on Career Services. Learn about career research, resume writing, interviews, salary negotiations, and how to apply to grad school, law school, or medical school.
  • Make an appointment with a career counselor by creating a profile on You will be added to the Career Center’s database after meeting with a counselor and submitting your resume, allowing us to keep an eye out for relevant jobs.

How to build a career plan as a sophomore?

Find out what you should do each year while attending college:

  • If you need assistance selecting a major, minor, concentration, or emphasis that will complement your career objectives, talk to your faculty advisor or a career counselor.
  • Between your freshman and sophomore years, you should have joined at least one club or organization that was related to your major or career field if at all possible. Employers will be impressed by your involvement because it demonstrates your ability to collaborate and work well with others.
  • For field research, contact three people. You can learn a lot and often land internships by interviewing people in positions you are interested in. The career center has leads available for purchase.
  • Before the actual interview, schedule a mock interview with a career counselor.
  • If you want a job or an internship, go to the Career & Intern Expo. 50-80 employers attend each year.) Find a summer job or internship that offers training in essential skills and opportunities to develop them.
  • Check to see if the profession you’re interested in requires a Masters or Doctoral degree.
  • Use Eureka to start looking into schools that offer graduate programs if you are thinking about going to graduate school. Check out the admission requirements for these universities on their websites. Choose classes and extracurricular activities that will help you stand out from other applicants by working with your faculty advisor and career counselors! Keep up your GPA!
  • Continue putting time into your career development while deciding on a major and choosing it.

How to build a career plan as a junior?

Find out what you should do each year while attending college:

  • You should be narrowing down your career options at this point to find a job target and an industry to pursue.
  • Find your passion by researching businesses, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and educational institutions.
  • Work and volunteer experience can help you learn new or more advanced skills.
  • Look at job ads to find out what skills and experience you need to eventually achieve your goals.
  • By running for office or getting involved in the national organization, you can increase your involvement in the organizations you are a part of. Try out various roles and build strong relationships.
  • Acquaint yourself with the campus faculty—you will require their recommendations for jobs and graduate school.
  • Get ready for the job search.
  • If you want a job or an internship, go to the Career & Intern Expo. Each year, 50-80 employers attend.) If you’re thinking about going to graduate school, start applying right away! Start studying well in advance of any necessary admissions tests. Start collecting application materials, such as transcripts and letters of recommendation, before the application deadlines.
  • Talk to more people who are working in jobs you’re thinking about. Pick up the Field Research booklet from Career Services to make a better impression.
  • Consider the job search a class. It requires research, expertise, and preparation!

How to build a career plan as a senior?

Find out what you should do each year while attending college:

  • If you want a job or an internship, go to the Career & Intern Expo. Each year, 50-80 employers attend.) Perform an additional internship! While you are in school, you can add experience to your degree and build your resume, making you more marketable after graduation.
  • For assistance in salary negotiations, attend a workshop or make an appointment with a career counselor.
  • While they still remember you, get letters of recommendation from professors, employers, advisors, counselors, and others now. Request consent to remember them as a source of perspective for requests for employment.
  • Try to publish your papers in campus publications, professional journals, or popular publications when you write them. Get suggestions from your teachers. Save for your portfolio.
  • Find people who are interested in your field and are willing to serve as mentors or advisors. Meet alumni from your field and people who have been recommended to you by professors.
  • Make time to actually look for a job! Your “job” should be looking for a job right now. Finding a job that pays well takes time and effort.
  • Create and personalize a plan for job searching.
  • Attend every workshop on career services.
  • Start gathering materials for grad school applications, such as letters of recommendation.
  • Check to see that your profile is current and that Career Services has received your resume. This will allow you to continue providing services as an alumnus and keep you on file with Career Services.
  • Six months before you graduate, start interviewing for full-time jobs.

6 steps for your future career planning

A career development plan can be difficult to put together. Here are a few easy steps to get you started in the right direction as you work through the career planning and development process.

  • Step 1: Explore career options
  • Step 2: Conduct field research
  • Step 3: Determine your job target
  • Step 4: Build your credentials and resume
  • Step 5: Prepare for your job search
  • Step 6: Launch your job search

Step 1: Explore career options

Explore additional fields with the help of career assessment tools to better utilize our career staff’s guidance. This stage helps you become aware of all the possibilities. You will learn the skills, educational requirements, and personal characteristics needed to succeed in a variety of fields, in addition to position titles.

Career counselors can use this information to make suggestions for majors, jobs, and careers that match your interests and skills. The objective here is to suggest a few choices to a career counselor.

Step 2: Conduct field research

Choosing a career path can be made easier at this stage. Meeting with an expert in the field is a great way to learn more about your options for a career. It entails meeting people in different industries or positions that interest you and asking them questions about their jobs.

Additionally, this is the first step in establishing a professional network. Pick up a packet on Field Research and Informational Interviews from the Career Center to assist you with this stage.

Step 3: Determine your job target

It’s time to make a decision, and set some goals after looking at your options through career exploration and field research. Your Job Target describes the components of this decision. The specific industry and position you choose to pursue are your Job Targets. It might also include the location itself. As you acquire more knowledge about yourself and experience, your Job Target may shift.

Step 4: Build your credentials and resume

This stage is ongoing, and as your credentials improve, so does your resume. Interviews and offers are triggered by a strong resume. The best ways to increase your knowledge and credentials are:

  • Internships relevant to your Job Objective
  • Taking classes and going to seminars about your career goal
  • Reading publications related to your Job Target, such as journals and books
  • Getting involved in campus professional organizations or clubs that are related to your Job Target

Employers can view your resume if you upload it to

Step 5: Prepare for your job search

At this stage, you need to do research on the companies and organizations you want to work for and find out if your friends, family, or Career Center have any connections there. Develop strategies for approaching employers other than looking at advertisements (which rarely yield quick results) and learn how to write calling scripts. Start a job search binder to keep track of all your activities and keep track of new information to stay organized.

Before meeting with employers, it is essential to educate yourself on interviewing and salary negotiation. This can be accomplished effectively in our workshops.) You must be distinctive! Start early because most recent graduates will need three to ten months to find work. It might take more time for a graduate student.

Step 6: Launch your job search

When you start your job search, there are many things you need to do. It’s important to write a targeted resume to show employers how your skills fit their needs. Make time to make calls, conduct interviews, write cover letters and thank you letters, and conduct research.

Think outside the box when coming up with strategies, and never forget to ask yourself, “Will this help me to stand out from my competition?” Last but not least, keep adding any new skills, knowledge, or experience to your resume.

How to write a career plan?

It might be difficult to put together a professional development strategy. Here are some easy steps to get you started in the right path as you navigate the career development and planning process on your own.

5 steps to write a career plan:

  • Step 1: Set your objectives
  • Step 2: Assess your current position
  • Step 3: Review your options
  • Step 4: Create your action plan
  • Step 5: Updating your career plan

Step 1: Set your objectives

An essential first step in developing an effective career development plan is knowing what you want to accomplish. However, as students, don’t be afraid to have multiple Career Plans—one current for the upcoming year and another updated as you advance in your chosen field.

Work through the questions below to help you think about your career development and make your goals more specific, relevant, and, most importantly, inspiring. To achieve them, you need to want to!

  • What do you want to achieve? What is your objective?
  • Why do you want to achieve this objective? What’s important to you about it?
  • What difference would achieving your objective make to you personally?
  • What difference would achieving your objective make to your future career?
  • How will you know when you’ve achieved your objective?
  • What would success look like for you and your career when you’ve achieved your objective?

Step 2: Assess your current position

It is essential to have a solid understanding of where you are currently located as well as the skills and knowledge that you have already acquired in order to move toward achieving your objective. It will be much simpler for you to plot a route between what you want to accomplish (step 1 above) and where you currently stand (step 2). You can learn more about the reality of your current situation by answering the questions below:

  • Where are you now?
  • What are your current skills / areas of expertise / competencies?
  • What are your strengths? What do you do well?
  • Which areas do you consider to be your development areas? What could you be better at?
  • What skills, knowledge or behavior do you need to develop in order to achieve your objective?

Step 3: Review your options

It’s time to look over all of your options for bridging the gap once you know where you want to go (your goal) and how far you have to go to get there. Keeping an open mind is the best way to approach option generation. Make a list of as many ideas and possibilities as you can (without analyzing them).

Work through each option one by one as you go through the list, weighing the benefits and drawbacks. To get you started on creating options, here are some questions to ask:

  • Which skills / knowledge / behaviors do you want to develop?
  • Which of the skills / knowledge / behaviors that you have chosen could be quick wins and which will take longer to achieve?
  • What things can you do to make an impact to your skills and career development straight away?
  • Who can help / support / coach or mentor you to enable you to achieve your objectives?
  • What training or development is easily accessible to you?
  • Which skills / knowledge / behaviors can you develop in your current position?
  • Where will you look for additional ways of developing your skills?

Step 4: Create your action plan

Committing to the specific course of action you will take is the final and most crucial step in developing your career plan. There will likely be a number of distinct steps in your career plan, some of which will be completed more quickly and easily than others.

Use the questions below to assist you in developing the steps that will make up the final section of your career development plan:

  • What individual steps do you need to take to achieve each objective?
  • How will you track your progress of each objective?
  • What barriers / obstacles might get in your way?
  • How will you overcome the barriers / obstacles you have identified?
  • How will you celebrate success when you’ve achieved each objective?

Step 5: Updating your career plan

You will constantly be adding to and changing your career plan as a student. You will be able to stick to your plan if you monitor these changes.

To assist you in updating your plan for career development, consider the following suggestions:

  • Have you started or completed a new internship or related experience?
  • Have you updated your skills and interests?
  • Have you researched industries or companies that might change your career direction?

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