Job Searching? How To Manage The Job Market

It seems the world of recruiting and talent acquisition continues to change and as a candidate it’s vital you stay plugged in to market demands. But how?

While it’s not easy to keep a pulse on each new piece of technology that helps the recruiting world find talent, it’s important that you try. The biggest hurdle you’ll face in your job search is YOU!

Whether you’ve been passed over because your resume is missing the mark, or your follow up sucks, understanding the subtleties of how to manage a successful job search can be the difference between landing a great offer or sitting on the sidelines.

Target Your Resume Before Hitting Submit

Snazzy job boards and the ability to apply to opportunities through LinkedIn, makes life easier when you’re job searching. The downside? It also makes it much easier for HR to sort through resumes and reject those that aren’t a match. Resume templates and fill in the blank style resumes are past relics. Listing your tasks, objective and hitting send won’t land you an interview. Instead, take time to target your resume to each role plan to apply to.

Targeting your resume to an opportunity tells hiring managers that you not only understand the needs of their open role, but you have the skills to hit the ground running immediately. It’s time to ditch the generic resume you’ve been “updating” since college and move into a targeted, professional resume.

Plug Into Your Job Search

After targeting your resume, don’t assume you’re finished. You can’t lose sight of the bigger goal, landing a job offer!

If landing an offer is going to be a reality, you have to be fully plugged into your job search. Plugging in requires proactive forward movement which can be achieved by making an actionable plan and executing it. To create a plan, begin by setting your goals.

  • Define your target companies.
  • Outline the types of roles you’re interested in pursuing and create a list of “must haves” for your new role.
  • Set time tables which include initial research, outreach to hiring managers and deadlines for follow up.

Remember, placing your resume on a job board is great, but a successful job search requires more than a “set it and forget it” mentality. If you want to land a dream job, you need to proactively move your search forward. A job board won’t do that for you.

Engage And Land A Job Offer

If you want to land an offer, engage on day one. Researching companies, targeting your resume and reaching out to hiring managers should be a large part of your engagement plan during your job search. But, there is another side of engagement that is easily forgotten, networking and follow-up.

Networking is critical to a successful job search, provided you are strategic about your outreach. Using LinkedIn, personal meetings and outreach via phone is key to making impactful connections.

And before you start whining… no, outreach doesn’t = cold calling. True networking doesn’t equate to using LinkedIn like a rolodex to collect as many contacts as possible. Instead, begin by reaching out to past colleagues, bosses, business acquaintances and friends.

Next, pick up the phone. While email or texting is tempting, consider this: few people actually pick up the phone to reach out to people and doing so will immediately set you apart.

If you’re lucky, you’ll have a chance to connect with the person live. If not, leave a voicemail and let them know to expect an email from you. Then, immediately send them an email to let them know you’re launching a job search and would appreciate any insight into opportunities or connections that may help in your efforts. Personal outreach will provide a better response rate from your network.

Don’t expect immediate gratification from your activity. Networking takes time. A call you place today may not yield results for months. Just keep your eye on the prize and keep plugging away at your job search efforts.

Stay Focused

A job search takes time. It can be frustrating, emotionally draining and at times depressing. But, that doesn’t give you a free pass to unravel. While you won’t be able to control each aspect of your search, you can control your actions. Remain positive and be proactive. In time, you’ll find the right role for your career! Be amazing – Jeanna

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About The Author

Recognized nationally as an industry leader in resume writing and career coaching, Jeanna McGinnis, CPRW is a Founding Board Member at ReResumeMe.com, a Board Member at A Players Executive Search Group Inc. and a recognized Coach for Forbes Coaches Council. Leveraging more than 16 years of experience directing hiring practices for multiple Fortune 100 companies, Jeanna and her team are refreshing how busy professionals brand, market and drive their careers. Please connect with Jeanna on LinkedIn or the ReResumeMe team on Twitter to simplify your career with updates on careers, job search and resume best practices!