If you’re just starting out on your job search journey, beginning what seems like a mammoth task can seem overwhelming. Many clients come to us out of school, college or uni and are just starting to look for their first ‘proper’ job. Your career is so valuable and the first baby steps you take are crucial. These lists outline everything you need to begin.
If you don’t know where to start or feel as though you need some guidance, read on to find out how we recommend approaching your job hunt.
Planning is everything. Without a plan and clear direction, you can quickly become distracted along the way. You could even end up giving out the wrong message to recruiters. You need to think about several things while in the planning stage.
- How will you carry out your job search?
- Who are you going to work with to get your new position?
- How much is it going to cost to find your dream job?
- Where is this next career move going to take you?
These are all important things to know. To keep track of them, answer these questions and act accordingly:
- What do you want to do and achieve in your next role – what is driving you to look for a new role?
- Where do these roles get advertised? Set up profiles and social media accounts, re-energise contacts.
- What tools will you need to get your job search off to a good start?
- How do you contact recruiters and reach the most people in the shortest space of time?
- What budget will you need?
- How do you track progress and ensure contact is maintained with all involved in your job search?
Outline the answers to these questions in a document, diary or notebook dedicated to job searching. It will come in handy when you need a little motivation, and it’s so satisfying to see yourself getting closer and closer to your goals!
Whatever you do in your job search, do not leave anything to the last minute. It will show in your application if you have rushed anything. Sit down and plan your strategy. What are you going to need?
- A CV and Cover Letter – essential for job searching
- Access to a PC/Laptop with internet access
- A diary and calendar to track interviews, feedback and time spent searching
- A notebook to log all the recruiter details who call you and who you contact in your job search process
- A suit for interviews (ready and prepared at all times)
- A budget for travel costs, a new suit and shoes if needed and an umbrella (especially if in the UK!)
Tick these off as you acquire them, and keep everything together. Your paperwork should be kept in the same place on your or in a dedicated file on your computer, and your interview clothes should be hung up in your wardrobe so you’re ready to go.
Things like the calendar and diary will help keep you on track and happy – you can see at a glance how many interviews you’re getting and how far you’ve come!
The best time to job search is between 6am-9am. Recruiters will check emails and applications in the morning and you want yours to be one of the first they see. Always make a note of where you have applied and keep track of the following information:
- Date of Application
- Application Process (Job Search Site, Recruitment Agency Submission, CV Distribution Service etc…)
- Method (Online, Email, In Person)
- Contact Name and Contact Details
- Follow Up on DD/MM/YY
- Outcome and Feedback
Be prepared for recruiters to contact you, especially if you put your CV up on internet search sites. Have a small notebook on your person every day to jot down the recruiter, company and contact number. Then add it to your main tracking document when you get home!
Monitor & Evaluate
Always check your progress. Some key flags can show you if you are going in the right direction or if you may need some further support:
- Is your CV getting a response? If not, you may need to get it reviewed or rewritten.
- Are you getting invited to interview but not getting the job? Consider Interview Technique Training.
At the end of the day, you will know how effective your job search is by the number of responses you receive from your applications and how successful you are in the interview. Always ask recruiters for feedback and learn from any critique received for next time!
Good luck, and if you do require any further support we are only a phone call or email away.