What Does Entry Level Mean?

What does entry level mean when you are looking for jobs? An entry level job is normally one that requires minimal prior work or professional experience. It is usually designed for graduates or individuals looking for their first full time or permanent position.

Entry level jobs require different amounts of education and experience depending on the field and the company. Learning what entry level really means will help you apply for the right jobs for you.

How do I know if it is an entry level job?

Most job postings or job descriptions will quickly identify the position as "entry level".

There are entry level jobs that do not require a college degree or previous full-time work experience. These type of entry level jobs are commonly found in the hospitality, retail, transport and customer service industries and can include junior administrative-type roles.

Entry level jobs that require an undergraduate degree are the most common entry level jobs and can be found in many different industries including accounting, finance, marketing, healthcare, education, IT and corporate services. These jobs are more likely to demand specific skills and knowledge.

What does entry level mean for a job?

It is important to understand what does entry level mean in the context of a job opportunity and your particular skill set in order to maximize your chances of finding the right entry level position. 

If the job posting specifically refers to "recent graduates" you know that it is an entry level position. Some companies however will list their job as entry level and then ask for "1 to 2 years experience". This can be confusing but it is important that you know what the specific company means by "experience".

Some companies regard internships, volunteer work, part-time jobs and extra-curricular activities, which all help you develop professional skills, as "experience". If you feel confident that you are able to perform the job tasks and you meet the skills criteria, then apply for the job.

How do I find entry level jobs?

In order to look productively for entry level job opportunities you need to use the right keywords for your online job search. Useful keywords in addition to "entry level" include

  • junior
  • associate
  • recent graduate
  • trainee
  • development program

Finding jobs online

How do I know if I qualify for the entry level job?

In order to find entry level jobs that match your qualifications and interests it is key to determine:

  • your level of knowledge and education
  • your current skills and abilities
  • your strengths
  • what you are looking for in a job

Review the entire job description of the entry level position to determine whether you meet the minimum job requirements. Customize your cover letter and resume for each job opportunity.

Entry Level Cover Letter

Entry Level Resumes

What should I look for in an entry level job?

Consider the training, mentoring and learning opportunities the entry level job provides. Exposure to a variety of tasks and responsibilities will enable you to learn and develop your skills

You may need to start your career in a job that is not directly related to your qualifications but that provides you with a clear career path to the job you ultimately want to be in.

Ensuring a good entry level job fit includes finding out about the company culture and determining whether it is the right environment for you.

Applying for entry level jobs

It is important to tailor your job application to each entry level job opportunity.  Even with limited experience it is key to make your cover letter and resume relevant to the specific job.

Entry Level Cover Letter Template

Find out how to write an entry level cover letter with this easy-to-use template.

Entry Level Resume Templates

Sample entry level resumes that get you the results you want.

Entry Level Resume Objectives

Entry level interview questions and answers

How to make the right impression in your entry level job interview.  15 essential entry level job interview questions with good sample interview answers.


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