"Handshake," the new job search platform

Sonoma State University has made a change to their job search engine from “Seawolf Jobs” to the much more user-friendly “Handshake,” aiming to make students’ job searches easier in the process.

“Handshake has some more dynamic features and gives us access to more jobs for students,” Career Center coordinator Audra Grady Verrier said. Handshake is often mobile as well, “So students can access more of the system on their phone,” continued Verrier. 

The job-seeking platform for recent graduates was launched in 2014 by three Michigan Tech graduates who were “struck by the inequality in access to opportunities. By the end of last year, Handshake had partnered with over 500 schools and had as many as 100 employees and counting.

Handshake is not only used for full-time jobs but is used for internships and part-time jobs also. “I am so excited we can bring this much-needed change to our community of Seawolves,” career advisor Becky Young said.  

The switch from Seawolf Jobs to Handshake is in full effect and as of March 1 there will no longer be a Seawolf Jobs. The change has an abundance of benefits, but having “employers [that] are already on Handshake… creates more opportunities for [students],” career advisor Kelsey Bensky said. 

Now employers can connect directly with Sonoma State “rather than creating a new login on simplicity and remembering they need to hire Sonoma State students specifically,” Bensky added. 

With employers being one click away from posting their jobs for Sonoma State students, “The timeline is much quicker as well and jobs are available more quickly,” Bensky said. Handshake will be benefiting Sonoma State students, alumni, and employers alike, something Seawolf Jobs could not necessarily say.

Seawolf Jobs was a nice place to look for jobs, but when comparing it to Handshake, it is laughable. Handshake will have around 1,500 different employment opportunities, Seawolf Jobs would have about 300-400 jobs at a time,  Young said. The career advisors are happy “to better serve our students,” Young said. 

The only concern is “implementing it, so making sure students are aware and educated about [it].” Verrier said. Often times customer service can be tricky to get ahold of, but Handshake allows that problem to disappear. “So far they’re great; their customer service is awesome, their help desk is awesome, so we’re able to as things come up really troubleshoot with them very quickly,” Benskey said. 

With new technology, there are often issues that arise, but students can call the Career Center for help anytime at (707) 664-2198.

Another unique difference between Handshake and Seawolf Jobs is Handshake is meant for college students. “The employers who use Handshake want college students,” Young said. With that being said, there should be a lot less wasting of time, “There is no searching through 20 jobs only to find you don’t qualify,” Young said. 

Handshake is not only an awesome tool for finding jobs and internships, but it is also going to be used for this year’s career fair. “They can see which employers are coming to the fairs and they can even go so far as to what employers are being hired for,” Verrier said, referring to Sonoma State students. 

Handshake is really becoming popular because of how user-friendly it is; multiple CSU’s and UC’s have started using it. To make an account, all you need is your username and password. Once an account is made, Handshake gives you a plethora of options to demonstrate your interests and to help employers better find you. 

For recent graduates, there are a myriad of job-seeking websites out there, although there is currently no better tool than Handshake. 

Handshake is the way of the future and Young believes it is easy to see why. “Handshake is going to change how we get students connected to their career,” she said.