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Experience is the Top Hiring Criterion for New Workers

Landing your first job after college may depend more on what you did between classes rather than in school, suggests a recent survey. Nearly half (47 percent) of executives polled rated professional experience as the most important quality in hiring new graduates - more than the type of degree earned (18 percent) and grade point average (17 percent).

The survey was developed by OfficeTeam and conducted by an independent research firm. The poll includes responses from 150 executives with the nation's 1,000 largest companies.

Survey respondents were asked, "Which one of the following do you consider most important when hiring a recent college graduate?" Their answers:

Many graduates face a 'Catch-22' situation in their search for their first full-time position - they can't get a job without experience, but they can't get experience without having a job," said Diane Domeyer, executive director of OfficeTeam. "Working as an intern or temporary allows students to build their skills and business network, thereby enhancing their marketability to prospective employers."

Domeyer offers the following tips for emphasizing on-the-job experience in your resume:

-- Article courtesy of OfficeTeam, which has over 250 locations worldwide and offers online job search services.