Ahem! A moment before we go into details, it’s just a bit of information I’d like to share, most of which you already know but probably ignored (keep reading, you might find them useful).
You want a job so bad, you can hardly wait to be called for interviews because you are dying to show recruiters the stuff you are made of whenever you are given the opportunity but you probably won’t get a job by wishful thinking, this is why;
-The competition is really strong, imagine 5,000+ candidates applying for a single position, (the competition is actually scary)
– Overtime, searching for a job has somewhat become a job in itself, we have to embrace this fact. Many job seekers really don’t have clear cut reasons why they want certain jobs. Many only want to earn a living (doing white collar jobs apparently), which makes unemployment quite formidable.
So how do you make your job search meaningful and effective enough to land you a job? What are those other things you can do while you ( and 4,999 other people) wait to be invited for interviews? Have you considered any of the following?
Job fairs: why job fairs? they are a complete waste of your time, besides, that you’ve never gotten a job through job fairs is enough proof right?
Well, not exactly.
Job fairs do much more than providing job opportunities for a select few. How? Attending job fairs gives you a chance to see what kinds of jobs are in high demand, current trends in different industries and an avenue to network with potential employers. You don’t buy everything you see in the market but you have an idea of new and existing products, same way job fairs serve as eye openers to give you a clearer more specific definition of where you fit in the job market. You still think job fairs are a complete waste of your time?
Volunteering: Asides the fact that volunteering gives you an opportunity to expand your network and possibly land you your next job through contacts gathered, it also opens doors for new careers, builds your confidence and gives you recent experience to put on your résumé, much more, you have something impressive to share with your interviewer(s). Why not get off your couch to go fleshen up your résumé and add meaning to life by volunteering.
Networking: This is quite overarching for an effective job search, based on the aforementioned fact on referrals, networking helps you become the type of person other people will like to meet and nearly everyone you meet can be added to your job hunt network. While your résumé lies between large piles of résumés waiting to be screened,get more contacts or make do with the ones you already have to fast track your job search.
Having an insider: This is also networking but in a more specific way, narrowed down to the organisation you are looking to work with. You have a competitive advantage if you already know somebody working in the company/firm/organisation you are interested in. With this person; you have access to company information- even to things you might not see in press releases or on the company website-, probably get introduced to your potential employers where you can create a lasting impression so they’ll be on the lookout for you when there’s a job-opening.
So what if your friend, former colleague or relative doesn’t work in the particular organisation; does that mean you have a rare chance at getting your dream job? absolutely not! Do the cold call, it helps! Drop your résumé with the HR person in the organisation and call from time to time -preferably once every two weeks- to find out about requirements for job positions and other relevant information or simply to check up on him/her. This shows you are deeply interested in working with the organisation and also keeps you in the mind(s) of the people you call or meet. You should however be ready to seize opportunities when they come and be tactical about your cold calling experience.
Rewriting your résumé: you don’t have to though but your résumé probably needs some tweaking if; there are grammatical and spelling errors, your skills don’t match with job descriptions, your experiences are not well tailored to what employers need or you have what recruiters call a résumé gap i.e your experiences are either outdated or you’ve been unemployed for a long time (more on résumé gap later). You have to keep writing your résumé until it is right- by right I mean, it matches the job description, which would also mean, no generic cv/résumé; you have to take the time to make adjustments for each job you apply for, take out irrelevant details and avoid spelling errors.. oh in addition, have a cover letter too (except there’s an outright rule not to) – employers look at your cover letter first before they glance through your résumé. More on cv writing here, here and here.
Feel free to share this to your job-seeking friends; drop your questions or comments in the section below, it’s our job to get you ahead.
Image source: Snagajob