How to Job Hunt

How to job huntSo you realise you want a new job but don’t know quite how to start?   Here is the low down on how and where to start your job hunt in 2015.

Knowing what you want

Before you even start you search you need to know what kind of job you are looking for.  There were over 700,000 job vacancies in the months Dec 2014 – March 2015 according to the office for national statistics and most of them won’t be suited to you.  This is why it’s important to spend time considering what you actually want from your job search.  Do you want to stay in the same industry, change career paths completely or are interested in moving higher up in an organisation.  What are your aspirations in the next few years, what is your end career goal?  By answering these questions you can start to build up a picture of where these jobs might be, which companies you might want to target and very importantly begin to compile your key words.

How knowing your key words help your job hunt

Knowing the key words for your ideal job gives you a double advantage.  Not only does it make searching for jobs much easier but it makes you considerably easier to find.  What is a key word?  These are the words most commonly used to describe key parts of your ideal job role.  These key words will crop up time and time again in job adverts, role descriptions and person specifications.  As a consequence, these are the same words which should appear in your CV, application form and social media profiles, making you easy for recruiters to find.

Job hunting takes effort and persistence

 To produce the most successful outcomes it is best to combine a number of the different methods outlined below and to not give up.  Most recruitment processes will take weeks from the job advert being created so don’t get disheartened, being proactive and consistent in your approach to selecting jobs and creating high quality applications will win in the end.

Where to look online

We live in a social media drenched world so it is only natural that this extends to job hunting.  Below are the tops places to look online.

1. Job websites

There are hundreds of these, try to pick ones which fit or specialise in your industry or profession.  There are a number of general ones around so use your key words to really drill down to the type of jobs you want, do some testing to check if your key words bring back the results you want.  Be consistent in your searching, having a look once every couple of weeks really won’t help you to get a job.  Try setting up email alerts or check every few days for new job adverts being published.

2. LinkedIn

The beauty of LinkedIn is that its profile format is set up just like a CV so it is easy to transfer information straight across.  Make sure you are keeping your profile up to date, have a killer summary and use the key words from your preferred roles.  If you are interested in making the most of your LinkedIn profile, I have further posts planned in the very near future on how to fill in your profile and  how to get headhunted.

3. Twitter

A rising star in the job hunting world.  Recruiters, career job boards, professional bodies, all have twitter accounts and frequently post links to job adverts.  Its’s also a great place to listen to the “big hitters” in your field and to make beneficial connections.

4. Facebook

Although it isn’t perhaps the first place you think of for job hunting, according to research carried out in the USA earlier this year 66% of recruiters will use Facebook as a method of recruitment.  When you think that Facebook has over 1.19 billion users each month, it would be crazy to ignore!

5. You Tube

Again not a social media outlet you might necessarily think of, but more and more companies are using this medium to post video job adverts.  Not only does this offer a cost effective way of advertising but also creates an opportunity to connect with potential applicants and really demonstrate the culture of the brand and the required personal traits.

Offline

Whilst our online network is important it is a surprising fact that more people still find jobs through RL (real life) connections.

1. Online

I know it’s ironic to immediately start offline job hunting with a topic entitled online!  What I mean here is using the personal contacts you have in RL that you connect with online, e.g. Facebook.  Now I’m not suggesting that you update Facebook with “I’m looking for a job” as your status but have a look through your connections/friends and see if anyone would be worth having a conversation with.  Many companies offer a referral scheme to employees as a way to reduce recruitment costs so one of your friends might be very happy to put you forward.

2. Direct Contact

Although on the face of it sending a generic CV to lots of different companies doesn’t feel very likely to be successful it is still a valid option.  If you were to take time to target the right companies for you, alter your CV to fit with them, find the right recipient and suddenly your odds of success improve.  Remember what I said at the beginning of this piece, your best success rate comes from using a wide variety of these methods not just one or two.

3. Personal Contacts

These are real life people!  Anyone you know, your family knows, your best friend knows, even the people you meet in the gym.  Talk to people, if they do have connections that fit with your target areas, ask if you could send them your CV, just in case anything comes up.  I have a client this has just happened to, a job which hasn’t even been advertised yet.

4. Trade Fairs

These happen very frequently all over the country, recruiters will be there as will large companies.  Find out from the organisers who will be attending the ones local to you and consider attending if there is a specific company you have in mind.  At these fairs you will have the opportunity to talk to people directly and make an impression so take CV’s with you and dress to impress.
So now you know how to job hunt, it’s a pretty big list and some of these areas I will be covering in greater detail over the next few blog posts as they are pretty big topics on their own.
I’d love to know what techniques have been really successful for you when job hunting?
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