Job Hunting Tips

Network! Think of the people you know—relatives, friends, teachers, classmates, church members and others. Make an effort to meet with people, and use these conversations to ask their advice, to make them aware of your job search, to learn more about their jobs or their organisations, and to get the names of others who might be useful in your job search.

Target your resume/CV. Make sure your resume is targeted to the employers who receive it. Make sure your resume is easy to read and the most important details stand out. Make more than one resume if you are applying to more than one company/organisation.

Be prepared. You should have a copy of your resume with you at all times. It is also a good idea to have fresh copies of your resume prepared in case you are called to an interview at the last minute.

Create a contact database. Write down all the employers you contact, the date you sent your resume, any contact made, people you talk to, and notes about those contacts. Keep a note pad with you at all times—take notes as soon as you hear about an opportunity or when you leave an interview. Get into the habit of updating your database daily. Make a “to do” list every day. This will help you organise your list of priorities and keep you focused on finding that suitable job.

Try the buddy system. Link up with a friend who is also job hunting. Arrange to speak periodically and report on accomplishments, best practices, and future plans.

Learn how to talk about yourself. Throughout your job search, you will speak with many people at different levels. You must be comfortable having conversations about yourself with other people. Keep in mind that you never know who may end up being useful to your job hunt.

Prepare a speech. You never know who you’ll meet in an elevator, in line at the restaurant, or on the street. Know what your skills are and how to communicate them. You should be able to tell prospective employers and others you meet what you have to offer. You should be able to talk about how your skills relate to the organisation that interest you.

Find out all there is about employers in your field. Remain current on any issues or development in the field, read the news papers and visit their websites. It is extremely impressive during an interview if you know about any recent or current developments.

Practice for each interview. Preparation is key to interviewing well. Friends, relatives, and career services counselors can help you formulate strong answers to questions you might not anticipate. Look at the list of possible questions on the interviewing section and prepare yourself.

Follow up with leads immediately. If you find out about a position late in the day, call right then. Don’t wait until the next day.

Stay confident. Job hunting takes time and energy. Remain confident, but prepare yourself for challenges ahead. Don’t get disgruntled if you are still looking for a job and it seems like everyone you know has an offer.