The job hunting scene has changed a lot over the past few decades!
Once upon a time, you could search the ‘Help Wanted’ section in newspapers or walk your resume door-to-door in search of an open position. To say that the job scene of 2019 has changed is an understatement at best.
Today, we have applicant tracking systems, executive search firms, mass placement job boards, rigorous interview processes and more. It’s time to make an adjustment to how you approach searching for a job. After all, you are joined by a competitive community of job seekers who are fervently searching for a job.
Did you know that at any given time it is estimated that only thirty percent of the global workforce is actively job hunting?
This estimate from LinkedIn may sound small; however, think about these other telling numbers:
❗ The average corporate position can receive as many as 250 resumes.
❗ In addition, according to TalentWorks, the average job seekers are projected to spend as much as three and a half hours searching for jobs each day – that’s 44 percent longer than during the 2008 recession.
It goes without saying that today’s job hunters are determined; however, as the old saying goes, it’s better to work smarter not harder.
So, how can you stand out from the crowd and land your dream job? We’ve created a complete guide of essential job hunting tips to land any job in this competitive job market. This guide includes job hunting tips on:
- How to Start Looking for a Job
- Job Application Tips
- How to Get a Job in Another State
- How to Ace an Interview, and
- Common Job Mistakes
The job search process can be difficult. The biggest hurdle to any job search is determining how to start looking for a job. There are several ways to get started. However, what is the best way to start your job search? Stay tuned for our top tips to get the job search process started.
1. Make a Plan
Before you sign up for a job board, update your resume, or ask for a recommendation, it is important to understand what your end goal is. In the recruiting industry, career and job are used interchangeably. However, there is a difference that must be distinguished to make an action plan.
“Without a goal, and plans to reach, you are like a ship that has set with no destination.” -Fitzhugh Dodson, author
A job refers to working for financial gain. A career fulfills a lifelong dream or passion. Do you want a job or career? Identify your desired outcome, and draft a thoughtful and realistic action plan. This plan should take into account your current situation, credentials, network, timeline, and more.
The internet has made it easy to access a multitude of job opportunities in a matter of seconds. User-friendly applications make it simple to upload a resume to job boards and apply to any job that matches your skill set. However, no matter how great this may sound, this search method is not the most effective.
This job hunting tip shouldn’t come as a surprise, but your search should not be dependent on job boards. While job boards are a worthwhile investment the return on your efforts will likely be minimal.
According to a report by LinkedIn Business Solutions, the number one reason people discover a new job is through referral. Even more, Forbes estimates that there’s an 80 percent chance that you will get your next job through someone you know. With this in mind, ditch the job board and maximize your network’s potential to find your dream job.
3. Create a Winning Resume
Your resume is likely the first piece of content that a hiring manager will review. However, before your resume reaches the hiring manager it is important to edit your resume for the position. In the recruiting industry, it is common practice to use applicant tracking systems (ATS) that scan applicant resumes for predetermined keywords. Without these keywords, no matter how well-written, a hiring manager likely won’t read your resume. This is just one of many job application tips that you can use.
Check out the list below for more job hunting tips and resources.
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Resume Dos and Don’ts
- Do include keywords from the job description ✔️
- Do edit resume for each job position ✔️
- Do use tools like Grammarly to edit grammar ✔️
- Do have a friend read over final resume ✔️
- Don’t over exaggerate qualifications ❌
- Don’t use one resume for several positions ❌
- Don’t forget to include your contact information ❌
- Don’t submit a resume that is longer than one page ❌
4. Expand on your resume with a cover letter ✉️
The cover letter is a great extension of your resume! It allows you to highlight any achievements that you think are valuable and the hiring manager should know. We have a few tips on how you can make the best impression on your cover letter.
Check our quick job application tips and resources below.
Cover Letter Dos and Don’ts
- Do write a custom cover letter for each position ✔️
- Do highlight specific achievements ✔️
- Do reinforce why you are the best candidate ✔️
- Do show off your writing skills ✔️
- Don’t write your life story in the cover letter ❌
- Don’t allow your cover letter to extend beyond one page ❌
- Don’t submit a generic cover letter ❌
- Don’t regurgitate your entire resume ❌
Finding a job in another state can be difficult! Yet, there are often several benefits of moving to Arizona, as job seekers in California (for example) may already know. You must overcome potential complications that local applicants may not need to worry about like communication issues. Don’t fret—it is possible! Keep reading for a few suggestions on how to get a job in another state.
In general, the job application process will remain the same. Create a well-written resume and cover letter that accurately represents you and highlights your best assets. Once you complete the application process, it is a waiting game for the hiring manager to determine your aptitude. Next comes the hard part.
It is up to you to work with the hiring manager to negotiate communication. However, with technology like email and Skype, communication should be just as constant and regular as a local candidate. Stay in close contact and communicate your current situation so that the hiring manager is aware of any potential issues moving forward.
JUST A TIP (click for more information):
Once you’ve found your dream job, the fun begins! There are several ultimate relocation guides and complete moving checklists that you can use to help you make the transition to another state. Take advantage of these resources and happy moving!
Interviewing for a job position can be tough, but you’ve put in the hard work to get this point and now is the time to show the hiring manager why you are most deserving of the position. Read our top tips on how to ace an interview and show up to your job interview with confidence.
5. Research the company
First and foremost, research the company and the position you are applying for. An interview is a time for the hiring manager to assess your ability to perform in a job. Additionally, it gives the manager an opportunity to determine your enthusiasm for the company. Research the company before you attend your interview. Don’t get side blinded by this interview question!
“At some point during the interview process, most candidates will be asked ‘Why this company? What do you know about us?’ This is a question that you cannot afford to stumble over!” – Shannon Grimes, Talent Attraction Manager, excerpt from How Job Applicants Can Really Stand Out
6. Practice interview scenarios ️
No matter how many times you interview, there is always an opportunity for improvement. Practice interview questions are a great refresher on how to appropriately answer questions that you may encounter during an interview.
Ace your interview with these pre-interview practice questions:
Industry Specific Interview Questions
- Interviewing for a tech company position
- Sales and marketing interview
- IT interview questions
- Healthcare interview questions
- Nonprofit interview questions
Position Specific Interview Questions
- Product manager interview questions
- Software engineer questions
- Customer service interview questions that HR will ask
7. Ask the interviewer questions
A common interview mistake that many job seekers make is not asking the interviewer questions.
As much as the hiring manager wants to learn about you, they want you to ask questions. Asking questions during an interview shows that you’ve researched the organization and that you’re interested. In addition, you can ask questions that allow you to make an informed decision if the position is offered. Make a positive impression and show the interviewer that you are serious about the position and ask questions that spur further conversation.
8. Say thank you
Another commonly neglected practice is post-interview communication. Hiring managers receive tens- if not hundreds- of applications each month yet you are the one they took the time to interview. With this in mind, send a handwritten note or email to express your gratitude immediately after the interview.
In addition, this is an appropriate time to reaffirm your interest in the position and ask any follow-up questions. This extra effort allows you to stand out from the competition and make a lasting impression as the hiring manager contemplates the right candidate.
Common Job Search Mistakes to Avoid
We’re all guilty of committing a few job search faux pas that ultimately affects the process. However, if you’ve found that your job search has slowed to a crawl, then it may be time to rethink your approach to job searching. Here are a few common job search mistakes that you should avoid at all cost to improve your job search.
- Failed to create an action plan based on goals
- Relied too heavily on job boards
- Ineffective professional network
- Over-reliance on an outdated resume
- Exaggerated qualifications
- Lying on your resume
- Typos on the resume
- Failed to include resume
- Dressed inappropriately to interview
- Didn’t do your research
- Didn’t prepare for a job interview
- Neglected to ask follow-up questions
- Forgot post-interview follow-up
The job market has changed a lot in the past few decades! No longer will you able to get by with job boards, and general resumes are cover letters. Don’t let this deter you from finding your dream job and conquering the job market. BestCompaniesAZ has helpful resources that will take your job search to the next level. What are you waiting for?
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