Finding the perfect job may seem impossible — I’m here to tell you it’s not. It does take a few skills, especially patience and persistence.
1. Stay Active
First, I have to stress how important it is to stay active in your job search. Indeed, LinkedIn, and Google are my personal favorites and they can all provide great starting points.
Check your government jobs also — county and state. Your state should have a division of human resources page set up to make these a little easier to find. Typically, the pay isn’t amazing but they have good benefits.
Check often, set up alerts, and don’t put off applying until the last minute. It’s too easy to push it off until you miss the application window.
I use a planner to keep track of deadlines. I also wrote down which jobs I have applied to so that I can refer back to it in the future if needed. This is helpful when applying to multiple jobs for the same company!
Send out emails to companies you’d like to work with, it’s typically not difficult to find an HR email address on their website. Send them your resume and ask to be considered if any positions become available.
Contact professionals in industries similar to where you want to work. Best, they may know of openings that haven’t been posted yet. Worst, ask to use them as a reference if needed. The more, the merrier.
Utilize LinkedIn for networking. You may not realize that you have acquaintances working at your dream company. Don’t feel weird about adding people you know and reaching out to them professionally.
If you live in an area without a lot of good job opportunities, you will probably be applying to the same companies over and over again. Don’t feel like you are being annoying — feel like you are showing them that you are motivated and will do whatever it takes to work there.
3. Customize Application Material
Now, almost everything is done online when it comes to job applications. Make sure to customize your application material to each job. Use the keywords within the job advertisement itself to ensure you are a match, but don’t lie about your skills.
You don’t always need to fit the description exactly, especially if you’re willing to learn a new skill. The goal is to get an interview, because even if you don’t get that one, they may remember you next time something becomes available.
Always take the opportunity to write a cover letter. This article explains how to write one and how they can make or break your application!
4. Avoid Common Mistakes
This may seem obvious to some, but I feel as though it is important to point out. Without knowing exactly where you will end up, don’t do drugs. Don’t post horrible things on social media. Don’t drink excessively while filling out a job application (but a glass or two of wine helps 😘). You never know what they will be checking for. If you are that desperate for a job, don’t kick yourself out of the race just because you want to have a little fun.
If you do get the job, you don’t want to be rejected for something that could have easily been avoided. Be careful and until you know where you’re working, stay away from anything that can disqualify you.
5. Keep Your Chin Up
I know it’s hard. I have a degree, years of relevant experience, and amazing references — it still took me several months to find a job. I applied for my current job in November and started in March. It took me 4 months to get hired to that job. I had interviewed at least 3 times with the company (for various positions), and had started the application process 11 months beforehand.
Remember that many industries are very political and just because they do not hire you does not mean you are a failure or that you aren’t good enough. It just means that wasn’t the job for you.
Don’t be afraid to take a job that you are overqualified for if it comes down to it. Any paycheck is better than no paycheck When it comes down to it and most employers are understanding if a better opportunity comes along — just make sure to secure your new position before leaving your old one. It’s better to not burn any bridges and always try to give the appropriate 2 weeks notice if you are leaving.
The right job will come along — it may be tomorrow and it may take years of climbing the ladder. We are all on our own journeys and are just trying to do our best.