While business cards may seem old-fashioned in our technological world, they are still necessary and irreplaceable. Recent graduates should always carry them, since they are professional and quite inexpensive to produce. You should include your name, certificate(s), diploma(s) and degree(s) with your majors and minors, certifications, email, phone number, and blog. Blogs should only be included for communications, public relations, and journalism positions. (Ed: And by that, we mean that you shouldn't needlessly include your personal Tumblog.)
Your business card is your mini resumé. Instead of attempting to tell your employment history on the card, the person you hand it to will ask you questions. This is essentially a job-hunt card that you will use for your years to come with networking and friends.
Once you progress to a full-time position at a company, you most likely will get your own personalized business card, with the organization’s logo, your title, location, and work phone numbers. You’ll use this card throughout your entire duration within the position at the company. As you receive promotions and title changes, your business card will reflect it.
The typical recent graduate business cards are slowly being replaced by Bump, a smartphone app that allows you include your personal and social media information as well as LinkedIn. While it is useful app, and I have it myself, not all of your employers will have this app. So, it is very important to have a hard copy business card. Plus, Bump includes all social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. You may not want your employer going through your personal information (even though it is quite normal for human resources to look at these websites prior to hiring).
Of course, we now have the option of sending a tweet to a potential employer about positions opening up, it may not be the most professional route with 140 characters. Instead of sending a tweet, an email may be more appropriate. At least we do have the ability to use Twitter and Facebook to find out about positions even if we’re not on the website.
Although technology enhances our job hunt and networking, business cards still remain essential in the modern workplace.
Samantha Osaduke has recently completed a contract position as an academic advisor at York University. In the past, she has written about how to be—and look—professional, the importance of networking and job-shadowing. Read more of her writing at http://samanthaosaduke.wordpress.com.