Sure, you can go ahead and apply to every job you see online, visit every company website; you can even stick your resume on car windshields. Will it help you find a job faster? Nope.
What about networking? Yep, that's a lot of work. And when you go to an event you meet a bunch of people ALSO looking for jobs. Where are the employers?
What about calling friends and family? Yes, this is it!! You can call EVERYONE you know and ask them to help you. Tedious, sure. Will it help you find a job? Maybe?
Are you overwhelmed? I am and I do this for a living!
The thing is, there are a ton of ways to find a job. We in the Career Advisor/ Recruiting Field separate the ton of ways into two nice little categories.
Active (networking/calling) and Passive (sending out a bunch of resumes to people who have no idea who you are). Even with the two categories, helping someone navigate a job search is still overwhelming.
This is why I cam up with a simple job search timeline. 5 Steps - that's it.
1. Plaster your resume - use job boards and company websites.
Local job board sites are better; employers are more comfortable with these sites since the candidate pool is more precise. And that also works for you since you are completing with less people than you would with a national job board.
You can develop lists of companies that are local and hop on their site. Most companies have a job opportunity link listed directly on their homepage or on the "About the Company" section. Here you can apply DIRECTLY to the company and they update their jobs often.
2. While you wait to hear back from all the resumes you emailed out (and it will take a while - some HR offices take up to 5 weeks to call candidates) start talking to people. Who? EVERYONE. Friends, family, past professors or teachers, that guy you met at a party, …everyone.
You will be surprised how connected you are. Email friends and family - call them on the phone. Ask them if they know of anyone who is looking to hire and if they will forward on your resume. Ask them to look out for internal office job notices.
Get back in contact with people that you haven't kept up with - like professors or old high school friends. After all the small talk, chat about your career and where you would like it to go. You will be surprised about how people you would be willing to help you, even those you never thought would.
3. While you wait for your friend/ family member/ professor/ whoever to forward your resume on, start checking with all the companies you plastered your resume with. Is there a person that you can contact to see if they got your resume? Call and follow up with each.
This is where it can get overwhelming fast. KEEP TRACK of who you sent your resume to and who you called. This way, when you get a call back you will know who's from what company or for what job.
You can keep a binder or a spread sheet or a notebook or SOMETHING. Just keep track. You will thank me later.
4. Calling and scheduling interviews takes a lot of time,
and you often find yourself with a few days of free time. Use it to follow-up with the referrals you received from
family, friends, professors and others.
Hopefully they sent
your resume to the hiring managers they know - now is the
time to follow-up with those individuals.
5. Start all over again if you didn't get the perfect job offer.
These steps should take about one week each. Every week you are tackling something different. Don't try to squish these steps into a day or a couple of days. It just won't work. The job search takes time. It really does.
You have to have to remain invested in finding the best job for you and put in the amount of time needed. But when you do dedicate yourself to your job search and follow these 5 steps, you WILL find the perfect job.
Elizabeth Hlucky works at John Carroll University
as a Career Advisor helping students with their job search
and helping employers find the best and the brightest
candidates. She has her Masters in Community Counseling.
Questions about Job Search? Contact Elizabeth
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