Job hunting can happen to anyone, the CEO of a company who stepped down to pursue other things or a recent graduate who’s never been employed. Everybody has to start somewhere when trying to find a job, but job hunting has some serious stigma attached to it.
It doesn’t need to, though. Here are ten tips to help you keep going…
Accept the fact that you’re going to have to work your way up.
If this is your first real job after college, you’re the new girl, you aren’t going to get all the exciting jobs. You have to deal with it.
Manage your CV.
Always make sure it’s up to date before sending a job application off! We can’t hammer it home enough, and yet, we still see so many questionable CVs every day. Sending a tailored covering letter is a well-known job hunting tip, but are you doing this with your CV? Relevance is crucial when applying for any job. Your CV is most likely targeted towards one profession or industry, but no two jobs will be exactly the same.
Whenever you apply for a role, take a few minutes to check your CV against the job advert and look for any potential improvements you can make. For example, if you are hiding a crucial qualification at the bottom of your CV, move it to the top and make it prominent. Tailoring your CV for every application may take a little more effort, but it’s better use of time than making 10 generic applications that may not attract the attention you need.
Sign up with an agency.
If you’re looking to make money quick, it may be worth signing up with an agency. It’s their job to help you and I know plenty of people who have used agencies and had great success.
Be prepared for both knock-backs and being ignored.
As bad as it sounds, not every employer will like your CV or even give you a response. Is it wrong? I think so, however, let the knock-backs give you the determination to find something better.
Don’t take rejection personally.
Following on from my last point, I know how it feels when you really believe you can do the job they’re advertising only to be told you aren’t right for the role. The right job will come along and you’ll forget about all the rejection in a heartbeat.
Read the job description.
Do you have the skills and experience the employer desires? No? Then don’t waste your time. Be realistic, if you are applying for a manager position but have no managing experience, it’s obviously not going to work out. Study the job description and any available information you have on the position. Are you mirroring the words and phrases in the job description? Are you showcasing your strengths in the areas that seem to be of paramount importance to this role?
Cover letters are important.
If a company would like you to write one and you chose not to, it drastically decreases your chance of getting that interview. Employers appreciate a candidate who takes the time to fill in an application properly as it proves they are taking the process seriously.
Try not go crazy.
Applying for a job is stressful, especially when you feel like you’re getting nowhere. Make sure you take time out. Obsessing over application forms is unhealthy and the quality of them will significantly fall and feel repetitive.
Know your industry.
For example, if you want to go into the fashion world, the majority of entry jobs require work experience in the relevant field and a portfolio. Make the necessary steps in hope to make your CV stand out amongst the others.
Show your personality.
But keep the balance. Make sure your CV shows off your skills and professionalism but also gives the employer an insight into who you are. They’re looking to employ a person, not a robot…
Don’t Limit Yourself to Online Applications
You want that job search to last and last? Well, then continue to rely solely on submitting online applications. You want to accelerate this bad boy? Don’t stop once you apply online for that position. Start finding and then endearing yourself to people working at that company of interest. Schedule informational interviews with would-be peers. Approach an internal recruiter and ask a few questions. Get on the radar of the very people who might influence you getting an interview.
It’s a numbers game
In today’s jobs market, employers have plenty of candidates to choose from and they often receive hundreds of applications per vacancy. So the odds of applying for just one job and securing it are slim to none. Applying for several jobs at once, and getting your CV in front of as many hiring managers as possible, will maximise your chances. You still need to be selective about the roles you apply for, but scout out as many suitable opportunities as you can. Set a daily or weekly application target, track the vacancies, and make timely follow-ups.