Updated: Mar 26, 2020
By being well prepared in your job search you take the stress out of a job hunt away and increase your chances of landing more interviews.
You could be a fresher or an experienced individual looking out for new jobs but there's no denying the fact that a job search can be quite stressful. It can be quite tempting to jump the gun and blast your resume to every possible job vacancy out there. Doing this will make the process even less enjoyable. It is important to prepare yourself and get a few things in place so that you can set yourself up for success and form better strategies for your job application. Here are seven things that you should do before you begin your job search -
1. Update and clean up your social media profiles. According to stats, 93% of recruiters say that they are likely to Google search and look at a candidate's social media behaviour. Recruiters do this so as to look for anything that could possibly be a red flag. Tweak your privacy settings and consider deleting anything that could be considered as offensive.
2. Get a strong resume, cover letter and an optimized LinkedIn profile.
This is the most important step when it comes to preparing for your job search. A strong resume with great content and emphasis on your skills and experience creates a good first impression and helps in landing interviews. You may have the qualifications and the experience but you may not get past the HR when you have a poorly written resume. With recruiters spending only six seconds on an average per resume, having an attractive resume that grabs their attention for a longer duration is important. Recruiters receive hundreds of applications per job posting and an attractive resume is the key to setting yourself apart from the rest. Related - 7 reasons why you need an attractive resume!
Besides the resume, you can demonstrate your communication skills, strengthen your candidacy and increase your odds of landing that interview with a well-written cover letter. It helps in creating an impression that you are serious about the opportunity. It also allows you to include all those details that you may not be able to show through your resume. Related - 5 reasons why you need a Cover Letter! Most people do not bother having an account on LinkedIn or updating their existing account, missing out on the potential strength of the platform. LinkedIn can not only help you apply for a job but also have several potential employers reach out to you directly without you even sending an application. The largest online professional network in the world with over 200 million members located across the globe, LinkedIn, is the platform to connect with companies, recruiters and other professionals.
Related - Why LinkedIn is a great tool in your job hunt, and how to use it! At The Side Hustler, we offer you an opportunity to avail of our Professional Resume Writing Service. It is one thing to use an attractive template, it is another to make sure your resume has all that it needs for the jobs that you would like to apply for.
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Besides this, you may even take a step further and create your resume or portfolio as a website. This is very helpful for those in the creative field. 3. Networking and Referrals.
A good percentage of job vacancies are being filled without them being advertised. This happens through referrals where employees within the company recommend a potential candidate to fill in the vacancy. Referrals take place on a very large scale across companies as it saves them the money and time that they would invest in the whole hiring process and they are more likely to trust the referrals made by existing employees. Hence, networking plays a very important role here. Having a LinkedIn profile is great to network with your friends, past colleagues and even other professionals in your field whom you may not personally know. Get in touch with your connections and let them know that you are actively looking for an opportunity.
4. Quality over quantity always. It does not matter how many jobs you've applied for, if it is not what you truly want. By focusing on quality, you eliminate all those jobs that do not suit you or your requirements. Always read through the job description, understand the company culture, the compensation and benefits provided, if mentioned, and know if it is what you really want. If it helps, you can create an ideal job description by factoring in your strengths and areas of interest. It will also help you identify the things that you like or dislike.
5. Work on your presentation and communication skills.
Brush up on your presentation and communication skills and work on it during the period of your job search. Work on your gestures, postures and outfits. Watch videos on YouTube if you need to for tips on how to present yourself and speak with more confidence. It takes a bit of practice to master these skills, so practice it with a friend or a family member and work your way up.
6. Break down your job search.
The best way to organize and manage your job hunt is to break it down into a series of manageable phases - Research, Selection, Applications and Interview Process. Set aside a small amount of time each day to research on all job vacancies advertised across different platforms - LinkedIn, Job sites, Company websites and even Social Media platforms such as Facebook. Select the ones that you find desirable and apply to them by going through the application process for those jobs. You may then be able to successfully land an interview and prepare for it.
Related - How to use Social Media to get a job!
7. Avoid showing desperation for any job. Desperation is one of the most undesirable traits on a hiring manager's list. However bad your situation may be, the key is to avoid showing it even though it could be difficult when you may have been unemployed for a while. Some of the ways through which a candidate's desperation is seen is when the candidate applies to multiple jobs at the same company or when the candidate is willing to accept any salary and talks about how badly they need a job due to their financial situation.
Bear in mind that if an employer wants to hire you, it’ll only be if you have shown them that you’re the best person for the job, it’ll never be out of sympathy.
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