The process of searching for a new job can be an arduous one. You’re spending time on countless job websites, scrolling through listings and trying to figure out if any of them will be useful for you. It stands to reason that because the job search process can be so laborious, it benefits you to try and streamline it to as much of a degree as possible. With that in mind, here are 10 things you should consider if you find yourself searching for a job in the future.
1. Your money isn’t infinite
If you’re not working while you’re searching for jobs, then you might be eating into your savings or income you’ve got left over from your previous position. Sooner or later, you’re going to have to seek out alternative sources of income if the job isn’t working out for you. Selling old stuff you’re not using is one way of doing this, and you could also apply for online loans (provided that you find yourself a good lender, of course). Just keep an eye on your money situation at all times.
2. Online isn’t the only place to look
Many people make the mistake of confining their job search only to online listings, not realising that brick-and-mortar locations often advertise jobs that aren’t also online. It’s a good idea to get out on the streets and look for places that are hiring, even if they don’t seem like places you’d initially be a good fit for. Head into the stores and buildings, talk to people, and find out more about the positions. You never know when you’re going to find your dream listing!
3. Your CV needs work
You might think that your CV is fine, but the fact is that it almost certainly needs work. In the UK alone, an average of 118 people apply for each and every job that’s listed, so you need to make sure that your CV stands out in that crowded field. Be succinct and concise, but supply as much information as you can within that framework. It’s not easy to achieve the perfect balance; if it was, everyone would do it. Don’t be afraid to put some time and effort into your CV!
4. Networking is as important as searching
Your independent job search isn’t the only thing you should be doing when it comes to searching for new jobs. Talking to people and building connections is pretty much as important to your future career prospects as actually searching for the jobs themselves. Opportunities will often spring up that you’ll hear about before everyone else if you’ve built yourself a robust network. Go to employment events and career fairs as often as you can while you’re looking for a job.
5. You should be claiming benefits
If you are entitled to income support of any kind while you’re looking for a job, then you should definitely be claiming it. Despite what some people would have you believe, there’s absolutely no shame in being on benefits; quite the contrary, in fact. This help is out there for a reason, and claiming it could help you to survive during that crucial period between jobs. Make sure to calculate whatever benefits you’re entitled to and claim them as soon as possible.
6. Don’t burn bridges with your old job
Your old job might feel like a bad memory by now, but it’s important not to burn whatever bridges you built while you were there. Even if your employer isn’t a particularly good person or you’ve got colleagues you don’t like, try not to depart your old job with any animosity. References and networking are two of the biggest reasons you don’t want to do this, but there are others as well. Keep relations cordial, even if things didn’t end well.
7. You can do things while you wait
During the period when you’re looking for jobs, it can often feel like there isn’t much to do between applications besides just wait and see what happens. However, this isn’t the case. You could, for instance, look into volunteering opportunities, which can be hugely beneficial both for your skillset and for your CV. You could also be attending job fairs or meetings to help you boost your visibility in the employment sphere. Make sure you’re not sitting idly by.
8. Chase up employers
If you’ve submitted a job application with an employer and you haven’t heard from them for a while, then you should make sure to chase them up where possible. Email them to follow up on the application and ask them about the status of it. If you haven’t been successful, ask if they could provide feedback regarding why they didn’t choose you. Talking to them in this way might kickstart their memory; they may just have forgotten about you, or they might have a large backlog of applications.
9. Sharpen your interview technique
As well as your CV, it’s a good idea to go over your interview technique and make sure you’re prepared for future job interviews. Ask someone you know to act as your interviewer and try to anticipate any questions you might be asked. If there are gaps in your CV, make sure you’ve got an explanation for them, even if that explanation is a struggle with mental health or other problems. When you’re prepared, you’re more likely to succeed!
10. Don’t give up
The job search can be a lengthy and demoralising process. In those moments when things don’t look good, it’s important not to give up. You never know when the right opportunity is going to come along and surprise you, and all it takes is one single successful application to get you out of the job search doldrums. Giving up means you’ll never find the right job, so even when it feels hopeless, keep soldiering on and you’ll eventually find something!