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We all complain that looking for a job is very time consuming, and it is. But to put things in perspective, look back to the days of your parents and how they looked for jobs. There were no personal computers, there were typewriters. Your parents had to type their resume and each cover letter (and if they made a mistake typing, they started over). Your parents spent hours looking at the “want ads” in the local paper (you probably don’t remember the commercial tag line “I found my job through the NY Times”?), cutting out job ads from the paper and then faxing their resume and cover letter to potential employers. But enough of the past.
Maximize the Time Spent Job Hunting
It’s all about getting the most of every minute you spend job hunting. Spending a little time making a job search plan will help you maximize the time you spend looking for a job. This includes making a list of your resources. What you do next depends on how much time you have for your job search. Whether you are unemployed and can spend all of your waking hours on your search or you only have 15 minutes a day, the key to success is to “spread the wealth”.
So, what is your job search strategy? Let’s get started on building your job search plan.
It's all about getting the most of every minute you spend job hunting. Spending a little time making a job search plan will help you maximize the time you spend looking for a job.Tweet This
Make Your Research List
This is the list of companies, friends, and recruiting agencies that will form a part of your daily plan. For companies, use research resources such as Vault.com Company Research and Glassdoor.com. Consider the following when making your list.
- Include companies that you admire and offer opportunities that match your skillset. Learn as much as you can about your target companies, including top executives, financial results, news on the company, and company benefits.
- job search sites, such as ZipRecruiter, indeed.com, and of course LinkedIn.
- Your network. Friends, family and former coworkers are excellent resources for job leads and recommendations.
- Recruiters – Some opportunities can only be found by using recruiters. In addition to having a focused list of available opportunities, they will also help review and revise your resume.
- Compensation – Research salary ranges for your top title and experience. Know what you are worth before going on an interview. Include a list of “must-have” benefits versus “nice to have” benefits.
find a job
Ultimate List of Job Search Boards – This list of job search sites from CareerAlley offers a wide range of websites to start your hunt. These range from your typical job search boards to career-specific sites as well as other useful links. Pick the ones that best meet your criteria and make your daily plan (see below).
Jobs Resources in the U.S. by State – This link provides resources by State. Click on your state and you will see a list of various resources for your state. The New York link, as an example, has resource links for job seekers, search support, and planning links. But if that’s not enough to keep you busy, try this site from the U.S. Department of Labor.
The key to success in the current job market is breaking through to the hidden job market. Over half of all jobs go to someone who did not apply to a posted opening at all. What are they doing and how are they doing it? They’re finding new jobs before the posting hits the Internet.
Make Your Daily Plan
You’ve got to have a game plan otherwise you will not be focused in your hunt. You do not want to spend too much time in any one area.
- Keep a list to keep track of which sites you’ve visited. Include your username and password for each site. You think you will remember them but you won’t. Also include the last date you visited. Include a column for notes (who you spoke to when and any follow-ups);
- Create job search Agents on your top 5 job search sites. This will minimize the time you spend reviewing potential matches;
- Pick several tasks you will do each day:
- review your top 5 job search sites every morning;
- Register on 3-5 company websites;
- Register on 3-5 job search sites;
- Send your resume to 3-5 recruiters/headhunters;
- Return calls as soon as possible, start off your day doing this if there are any leftover from the prior day;
- Respond to emails as appropriate (and related);
- Research, research, research – making a list of companies you would like to work for, but don’t reinvent the wheel – leverage all of the lists included in this website and others;
- Register where you can and make sure you upload your resume;
- Every week, refresh your resume on your top 5 job search sites so that they look like they are new/current;
- Finished with every list known to man (not likely)? Recycle the list, revisit the job search boards, and try new searches.