Job Hunting Strategies
Finding a job takes significant planning, organization, and discipline. Here are some strategies to help you begin the process. We are here to help you each step of the way.
Review your interests, strengths, and past accomplishments. If you still feel unclear, consider taking a career assessment.
Create a Plan
Set up a system to search online job engine sites, company sites, job centers at public universities, and government agencies on a regular basis. Research professional placement companies, staffing agencies, and recruiters. Attend career fairs. Research current career and industry trends. Find out which occupations are in demand by exploring resources at local libraries and websites. Discuss how to conduct informational interviews with your career advisor.
Many jobs are not advertised and employers fill these jobs with people they know or with people who were referred to them. Networking is about making connections, creating relationships, and letting people know you are looking for work. Here are some strategies to help you begin.
Build a Network
Make a list of everyone you know. Remember that friends, family, neighbors, and colleagues are not the only ones you will be reaching. They can connect you to their contacts too. Expand your list to include people in professional associations, churches, social groups, and alumni membership organizations.
Find companies you want to work for and identify key players who are associated with these companies. Attend career fairs, conventions, and events that can put you in contact with them. Check out networking sites such as Ryze and professional association websites for leads.
Call and set a time to meet your contacts in person. Practice making the phone call with a script ahead of time. Identify yourself, state your objective, and ask if you can conduct an informational interview. Read articles about how to network on career websites such as Vault.
Follow up with a thank you letter, email, or phone call after meeting with your contact. This person may help you in the future. Keep contact with people in your network every few months to see how they are doing and to remind them of your goals.
Informational interviewing is an interview you schedule with a practicing professional to learn about a particular industry and gain an insider's perspective. The purpose is not to get a job but to widen your networking circle.
Decide Who to Interview
Research the occupations you are interested in and look for people in those fields. Network with people you know. Check out professional associations for ideas or contact the human resources office at organizations.
Call Your Contact
Write down a script of what you want to say and practice before you call. Introduce yourself, let the person know how you got his or her name, and ask if you could meet for 20 minutes about the person's career.
Research the Organization
Check out the company's website and other industry websites so you can ask great questions.
Bring a Resume
The person you meet with may want to see your resume to learn about your background and give you better advice.
Although this is not a job interview, you want to make a good first impression.
Ask for Additional Names
Interview more than one person in an industry so you can have more than one person's opinion.
Thank the Contact
Follow up with a thank you call, email, or letter to show your appreciation.
You can find a job even in a troubled economy. Below are a few articles that give advice on being strategic when job searching during tough economic times.