Proper preparation can guide your job search

01.15.2014


Proper preparation can guide your job search
Proper preparation can guide your job search.

Whether you're looking for a new position or just trying to find a better one, following the right steps can be essential when job searching. However, many people fall into the same traps when searching which can extend their search longer than necessary. By straightening out your approaches, you'll improve your chances in no time.

If your idea of job hunting mostly involves the Internet, it's definitely time for a change, according to the Houston Chronicle. While there are definitely good jobs to be found on social networks and job sites, this may not be enough to land your ideal position. Many jobs never see public exposure, as their companies are more willing to hire from within or follow leads.

This means it's time to consult your network. Get in contact with friends, family and colleagues, looking to see if they've got any leads. For instance, applying to an internal posting complete with a referral with a well-liked current or former employee will give you a great boost in your hiring chances than a relatively anonymous email containing a resume and cover letter. In some cases, being brave and going to the company in person may help as well, allowing you to make a better impression - employers will appreciate your tenacity and forwardness.

Organize your thoughts and your search
If you have a specific industry or position you're aiming for, it's a smart idea to identify exactly what you want to derive from the search, according to the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel. By creating target goals and segments, you can better harness your abilities, honing in on a dream position you're interested in.

Recognizing your skills and specialties, the more specific the better, you should then re-gear your resume directly toward information related directly to your industry in question. Highlighting strengths and experiences most managers would love to see in an employee, you should emphasize them near the top of your page. Then, it's time to search. If you haven't found leeway in your network, making a list of a number of organizations that may desire a worker like you - anywhere from 12 to 50 - can help. In addition, meeting with officials at a staffing agency won't hurt, either - they can help get your name out to industry professionals who may fall in love with your work. They'll also have access to plenty of leads throughout the industry, and as their jobs rely on getting others employed, you can be sure they'll do their best to help.

Now it's time to use the Internet
While it's not the best option for applying, the Internet can play a major role in your research process, and you should do so thoroughly. Scour the Internet, from company websites to professional groups to LinkedIn, to determine exactly who you're going to apply with. When writing cover letters, address them to these names - the direct approach will look better than a normal application. While you won't strike gold with every manager, you need only succeed with one to get the ball rolling. Contact through staffing agencies can spread your information even further.

That being said, make sure that cover letter is as high-quality as possible. Employers only spend about 20 seconds per letter, so showing attention to detail will get you ahead of the pack. But you can't just rely on your cover letter and your skills, either. It's important to show that you're a team player, someone who will fit with the company's culture. By looking up what they expect from their employees online, you can meet this requirement by expressing similar needs through your letter.

Resorting to gimmicks in your application to stand out from the crowd will only work in a select few industries. It's best to focus on keeping your efforts clean and well-prepared, letting your professional nature shine through.

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