Steps to an effective job search
Trying to find a new job is almost a full-time job, as it takes hard work, time and commitment to succeed. So, the last thing you want to do is to send out hundreds of CVs to employers and wait for a reply that may never come. It’s important that you are organised and know how to go about your search.
In today’s fiercely competitive market, you need to have a strategic plan for your job search before you actually begin the search, from where to look, to identifying the specific kind of roles you want to apply for. Here are seven steps that should follow when planning your job search.
Ask yourself why you are looking for a particular job?
Are you looking for a new job because you hate your current field of work or you just want to get your career started in any way you can? Or is it because you have become so good at your job that you no longer feel challenged in the role you are currently in and need to step up and find something more stimulating?
Think about what you are looking for
Figure out what you want to do AND what you don’t want to do. Even though you may feel quite strongly about wanting to work in a particular sector, it’s still very important for you to take your time to do some planning before launching into your job hunt. At the very least, you should know which fields or industries you are interested in, and what types of positions you are suitable for.
Know your strengths (and weaknesses)
Now that you have a rough idea of what you’re looking for, do you have what it takes to work in those particular fields or positions? What are you good at? Don’t wait until the job interview to figure these out. You’ll have to highlight them in your CV or application or you may not even be invited for an interview.
Do your research
Find out what opportunities are out there in the fields that you’re interested in. Take a look at the job boards, or even company websites of businesses you are interested in. Some job openings are not advertised, so if you know people who are already working in those fields, talk to them. Even though they may not have a job to offer you, they may be able to point you in the right direction or spread the word that you are actively looking for a job. This type of networking has proven to be very helpful throughout the job search process.
Put the hours in
Don’t “find time” for job searching, make time! Set aside a couple of hours a day for job searching and make sure it is your sole focus for that time. Make it your “job”.
Set realistic goals
Your ultimate goal is to land a job, but before you get there, you’ve got work to do. Set weekly goals for yourself, based on the number of applications to send out, the number of company websites to check out, etc. It will help you to stay motivated and give you a feeling of achievement each time you meet a goal.
Hone your interview techniques
Even though you haven’t been granted an interview yet, you should be prepared. List out some of the common interview questions and practice, practice, and practice! This way when you are invited for an interview you feel confident and ready to impress!