How to be effective in your job search

The job search is one of the most difficult challenges facing the population today. The job market is tough and the economic outlook is bleak. In all honesty it isn’t the best time to be a job seeker. But enough with the negativity. There are still jobs there, people are still hiring and there are plenty of opportunities to be capitalized on. The key to the job search is knowing how to do so effectively. So here are my top 5 tips to being efficient, effective and getting results from your job search:

#1: Networking

Networking is commonly recognized as the no.1 strategy to finding a job. It’s about building solid long-term relationships and a good reputation over time. Your network is ultimately limitless and as such can include anyone you meet. It’s all about sharing – if you’re helpful to your connections there is a much higher chance of them helping you in the future so you want to develop strong relationships with people. The larger your network, the greater possibilities you have of hearing about new opportunities, new information and new ideas.

Of course the traditional methods of networking still apply, for example going to job fairs, career events, conventions etc but one of the easiest (and most effective) ways of networking nowadays, is social networking. The last few years have bore witness to a revolution in networking, a move from the real world to the digital one. In 2011, 16% of job seekers in the US highlight social media as the main reason for finding a job. 18.4 million people give credit to Facebook, whilst 10.2 million say LinkedIn got them their current job. And these numbers are only going to increase, especially given the revolution in mobile technology which gives you the ability to be connected to anyone, anywhere, anytime. So get networking and get social! (Read more on using social media in your job search)

#2: Recruitment Agencies

Of course I am writing this as an employee of a recruitment agency and therefore may be a little bit biased but that doesn’t change the fact that recruitment agencies help maximize your chances of finding a job and be as effective as possible in your job search. Recruitment agencies work closely with people looking for jobs and employers looking for people to fill jobs. Like us, many recruitment agencies are specialized, and therefore experts in the area of work you are looking for, and do not charge you for their services. What’s also important to remember is that you can use lots of different recruitment agencies to increase your chances. Something which has increased in importance for employers is job references from previous employment so make sure to have some! I can guarantee you that if you’re a good candidate with a suitable profile then a recruitment agency will help you find the job you want.

#3: Keep an open mind

Staying with recruitment agencies for the moment, it is quite often the case (especially given the current job market) that you will be offered temporary positions. Don’t just write these off straight away. Part-time positions are great for helping you gain experience, skills and confidence as well as introducing you to a wider network of people.

In addition to being open minded about potential job offers you have to keep an open mind when it comes to learning new skills as well. For example, by learning a new language you can vastly expand the area for opportunity in your career. In addition to this, there are numerous training courses which can give you qualifications to put on your CV that can make you look much more favourable to employers. Finally, being willing to travel and being mobile are often essential in today’s market. So don’t just turn an opportunity down straight away, really think about it.

#4: Stay on top of the news

In today’s technological world, keeping up with the latest trends is key. As I have said, learning new skills is very important when looking for a job and technical literacy is one of the most important skills to have. You need to keep up to date with new developments in your field of work. By doing so, you can not only impress employers on your CV and in the Interview but also increase your career possibilities. If you don’t keep up you will get left behind.

#5: Never give up

Last, but by no means least, is the importance of perseverance. I’ve written recently about the importance of self-belief and keeping motivated for job seekers and I really can’t stress this enough. Looking for a job is no easy feat and sometimes it will get you down. What’s important to remember is not to take rejection personally, to find the positives in a situation, to learn from your mistakes and ultimately to believe in yourself. If you keep going the right job will come along eventually

So that’s a few tips on how to carry out a job search effectively. Of course there are no guarantees in the job seeking world and there is an element of luck involved to help you along the way but remember this advice and you stand a better chance than your competitors.

Good luck!

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