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job search techniques

With so many job search tools at your fingertips, and so many sites serving up job openings, you would THINK that it would be easy to find a new job.  I’m sure you have noticed that it’s a lot tougher than it seems. No need to stress, but you have to switch gears.

Stop applying for jobs.  That’s right, if you are not getting any traction, stop what you are doing.  I don’t mean to give up.  You need to pause, and reflect on what you are doing wrong, or maybe you are not keeping up with today’s market trends.

Not to stress, let’s discuss ways you can quickly get back on track.

Effective Job Search Strategies

Most job seekers start their job search by viewing local job search engines like indeed or Monster.  Once they have located a job they are interested in, they edit their cookie cutter cover letter and attach it to their resume and send it off.  With a prayer.

The problem is, the competition is super high with this method.  Sure it’s one way to apply for a job, but has that been working well for you?

If you are serious about finding a new job, your approach has to be well planned.

Essential Job Search Techniques

Network your way to your next job

Applying for job postings is great, but that is not the most effective strategy.  Companies like to hire people through referrals, because they get qualified candidates similar to employees they already have on their payroll.  You need to get referred, plain and simple.

Getting a referral usually occurs through people you know well.  You won’t refer a stranger, because you don’t know them, and can’t provide assurance to your employer that they are any good.  That’s why the referral is so important.  No one will refer a person who is a bad candidate, because it will make them look bad as well.  Reach out to people in your network who you know well, and ask for a referral.  Don’t be shy, get them to help you out if they can.

Grow your LinkedIn Connections

Networking today can be very easy with the use of LinkedIn.  But we all get those creepy requests from people we don’t know, who just send a request to be added to their network.  Don’t do that, don’t send out a request without a personalized message.

If you do it right, LinkedIn can help you grow your network very quickly.  Invest a bit of time, and upgrade your LinkedIn membership so you can maximize your impact.  It’s not about contacting everyone, but to be precise and contact those who will help you find your next position, and will most likely reply.  It sounds a lot easier than it is to be honest, but here are the essentials.

Target 20 people you would like to have on your network based on where you would like to work.  Do not contact HR, but People Managers, those who may be your boss at a company.

Hi [Name],


I see we both have experience in xxx field, it would be great if we can network.  I’m sure we can be a great resource to one another.


Looking forward to being a part of your network.


Thanks for your time.


[Your Name]

You may have heard back from a few of the contact requests, with hopefully some successful new additions to your network.  Next, LinkedIn will allow you to see your new contacts network as well.  Do the same thing, and reach out to people who you would like to add to your network, and send a personalized message such as:

Hi [Name],


I see we both have experience in [Employment Field], it would be great if we can network.  I recently connected with [Mutual Contact] and I’m sure we can also be a great resource to one another.


Looking forward to being a part of your network.


Thanks for your time.


[Your Name]

Don’t be shy, get out there and network your way to your next job.


% of Applicants who get interviews

More Job Search Tips

You will have your hands full with the networking guide above, but here are some obvious but never to be forgotten tips you should be aware of.

Focus your job search

It is important to focus on your abilities and apply for positions which suit your skill set.  When you narrow down your search, then you will know exactly what skills are required for your target position.  This will allow you to revamp your resume so it’s current and fresh for todays employer needs.

It’s a marathon and not a sprint

A job seeker should not give up looking for jobs after trying for certain period, even if your motivation is waning. Experts say that job searching is a full-time job in itself.  You can’t expect to get a job if you only apply for a handful of jobs.  You should expect to spend some time every day networking and searching for positions online.  The less time you spend, the less chance you’ll have of landing that next great position.

Your resume needs to be fed and loved

Most people looking for a job today, use their resume as a standalone document.  The cover letter is something that is revamped for each job, but why not the resume? If you are serious, your resume needs to be changed for every position you want to be seriously considered for.  The cover letter is nice, but the resume is where most companies spend their time.

You now have the tools to make an impact in your job search.  Don’t give up, give more.  More time towards networking and more time to your resume.  It will take some time to get going, but once you start growing your network, you will have the inside edge over those who do not invest the same effort and time.  Remember, your network should continue to grow over time, the sooner you start the better.

Sources: Workopolis
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