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6 months ago by Matthew Lane

How to successfully search for a job – the do’s and don’ts

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Finding a job can be a stressful and time-consuming experience, but there are things you can do to make the process easier.

Below, we take a quick look at how you can get one step closer to that dream position…

Focus, focus, focus

It will be easier to find a job if you have a clear idea of what you want to do and experience in your relevant field. If you’re only just starting out in the world of work, a scattergun approach might work well, but in most cases you should try and narrow down your search as much possible.

What kind of positions are you suitable for? What experience and qualifications do you have? What jobs are you most likely to be offered an interview for?

By narrowing down your search, and being as specific as possible, your chances of finding a job suitable to your skillset in a quicker amount of time will naturally go up. It will also help you to stay focused and prevent you from applying for jobs that are either below your experience level or above it.

Brush off rejection

Sadly, knockbacks are part and parcel of any job search. You might be extremely lucky and receive an interview for the very first job you apply for, but in many cases you are likely at some point to receive a polite email of rejection from an employer saying you are not quite right for the position or, in other cases, no reply at all.

It’s important, in these moments, to not lose heart and to remain positive. Just because you’ve been rejected by one or more companies doesn’t mean that you are unemployable or that you’re doing everything wrong, it might just mean that someone with more experience has been chosen ahead of you or that the position has already been filled.

Try not to take rejection personally, and remember that it’s something nearly everyone will go through when job-hunting. If you keep getting rejected, it may be time to re-evaluate your approach – are your CV and covering letter strong enough? Are you targeting the right kind of jobs and companies? Are you being too ambitious or not ambitious enough?

Persistence will nearly always pay off, so remember to keep at it even if you are facing a brick wall of no responses or polite rejections.

Be proactive

In some cases, getting a job can be a case of who you know. With this in mind, use any contacts you have to try and get a foot in the door or even just a pre-interview phone call with a potential employer. Networking can also pay dividends in certain professions.

You can also improve your chances of being recruited by being as proactive and visible as possible. This doesn’t mean turning up at an employer’s office with CV in hand, calling up every company in your local area to see if they’ve got any spare positions, or firing off your CV to all and sundry, but it does mean you should attend job fairs, get in touch with recruitment firms and create a professional and thorough LinkedIn profile.

While looking for a job, you may also want to fill your time (and improve your experience) by carrying out voluntary work – the sort of thing on a CV that stands out like a beacon to prospective employers.

Use job sites to improve your search

In this day and age, most people will turn to the internet to start their job search. Long gone are the days when job listings in the local newspaper or the window of the newsagents were the go-to. Even word of mouth is now less important in a thoroughly digital age.

And, in most cases, job sites will be your first port of call, helping you to tailor, refine and narrow your search by job type, industry, profession, salary and location. Job sites also enable you to upload your CV so recruiters can see it, highlight jobs of the week and send job alerts straight to your inbox so you never miss out on an employment opportunity.

Job sites can also offer top tips and advice on how to get a job in the first place, how to manage a successful career once you’re in work and outline any upcoming events that you may wish to attend for networking opportunities.