How much time are you investing in your job search?

3/1/2016
Utah Career New
How much time are you investing in your job search?
If you have not realized it already, you need to decide right now that job hunting is your new, full-time, 45-hours-per-week job until further notice. Track your time; measure how much time your are actually investing. You'll be surprised how little time wasters creep in and lead you to that old job hunting nemesis: PROCRASTINATION! It's time to buckle down and make your job search your full time job!

The Internet has dehumanized the job hunting process as well, deluding us into thinking we're looking "full-time." We send five resumes a day and think we are actively looking for work.

Sadly a human will likely never look at your application whether you apply on a company website, a job board or e-mail an application. Larger companies have software that will parse keywords and capture your information into a database. The software is designed to save the HR professionals’ time and to focus on only the top candidates – not to be fair to you.

So, what’s the solution? What will set you apart? What will help you overcome rough spots in your application or resume?

We have two suggestions today:
1. Networking
2. Focus on small and medium sized companies

Let’s tackle point #2 first. Here, the logic is simple especially if you have some “blemishes” on your resume. Small and medium sized businesses are the key job generators in our current economy. They’re adding jobs while larger companies are cutting back and trying to squeeze every ounce of productivity out of the work force. The only segment that can rival small business right now is the government sector and that’s an entirely different discussion. Also, in small companies, you are more like to be dealing directly with the employer or the manager rather than the HR department. He or she has a problem. They wouldn’t be recruiting if they didn’t have a problem. If they see you as a solution to the problem and a “good fit” you’re halfway home. It certainly puts more emphasis on the interview but from a different point of view.
 
So, how do you go about selling yourself? How do you go about selling any product? The process is as old as mankind:
1. Ask questions
2. Find problems
3. Propose yourself as the best solution to their problem and why

Now, let’s tackle point #1
Networking is still and probably always will be the single most important job hunting activity.
Ten phone calls are worth far more than a hundred emailed resumes or online applications. Here’s where the 45 hours a week some in. You have to be willing to work as hard at finding a job as your are willing to work at a job to be successful in your job search. Here’s a quick game plan:
1. Create a small, private space in your home you can use as your “job hunting office.”
2. Make sure your can maintain your privacy and deflect interruptions like
a. Cats
b. Dogs
c. Kids
d. TV
3. Make your first call at 9am faithfully every morning.
4. Make sure you tell people why you are calling upfront and ask for their help.
5. Ask questions (more in a later blog on good questions to ask.)
6. Be a name dropper on 2nd and 3rd generation calls (i.e. Bob Smith, our mutual friend suggested I give you a call.)
7. Keep good notes.
8. Call when you are supposed to call.
9. Send a thank you e-mail to everyone you call. It used to be proper business etiquette to send written notes but in today’s business world, save the written notes for interviews and send an e-mail.

Good Job Hunting from your friends at Utah Career News!