Congratulations! You’ve made the decision to start looking for a new job.
An exciting new opportunity is in your future. Before you start applying for positions, take a few moments to put together a job search strategy. The more prepared you are when starting your search, the better success you will have – and possibly, the less time it will take to get there.
See our previous article with “3 signs you should be looking for another job“
Even if you haven’t made the decision to start looking, a job search strategy isn’t a bad thing. You never know when the job of your dreams might come along. So, if a job search is in your future, bookmark this page so you can start preparing. Here are five things you can do now to get ready for a job search:
- Get your resume ready. Don’t wait until you have an interview and pull an all-nighter. Keep your resume current. That includes your accomplishments. One of the biggest assets to your resume is quantifying your achievements with numbers and percentages where appropriate. Also, be sure to update your social media presence (i.e. profiles information and photos.) If you have time, get a friend (or two!) to review your resume for typos and grammar.
- Network! A huge mistake job seekers make is only connecting with their network when they need a job. Let colleagues you trust know your plans so they will keep you in mind when they hear about openings. Ruchi Kaushik, senior recruiter for Unum, recommends sharing specifics so you only get the openings that you are interested in. “Send a mass email to your friends and post updates to your social network. Highlight your last three positions (if applicable), your ideal job responsibilities, and a list of companies you would love to work for.”
- Start attending industry or professional events. Not only is it an opportunity to learn and network, but many organizations use events to advertise job openings because they don’t want to be bombarded with resumes online. It’s possible to hear about openings before anyone else.
- Read professional blogs, magazines, etc. Many organizations advertise in industry publications. This is an opportunity to stay current with what’s happening in your industry or profession at the same time you’re looking. Also, start following social media hashtags that promote job openings – #JobOpenings and #NowHiring are common ones.
- Regularly check major job boards and search engines. Sites like Indeed and Simply Hired are major recruiting sources. Before applying, Kaushik suggests looking at job requirements to figure out if the job opening is something you really want to be doing or interested in. “Review the requirements of the job – and compile a list of your top qualifications. If you possess less than half of the desired qualifications, you should probably not apply.”
There’s an adage that says looking for a new job is a full-time job. And it’s true – there’s a lot of work involved. With a job search strategy, you can get your personal brand in order and be strategic about your time. It will help you land the new opportunity you’re looking for.