Job Searching Tips
As a freelance writer, I apply for jobs constantly, and over time I’ve realized what techniques and tactics work best for me. I would like to share some of them with fellow job seekers looking for work.
- Know What You Want From a Job: Think about what is important to you in a workplace. Assess factors like organization size, diversity, company culture, and benefits offered. Decide what kind of environment you would like to spend most of your waking life in.
- Job Sites: Use job search engines only as a starting point and instead use the listings as another tool to research local companies. If you find job listings that are a good match for your skills, apply to them by all means. But don’t spend too much time browsing the countless job sites.
- Know Your Job Market: Research businesses in your region and narrow down those related to your profession. Even if an organization’s primary area of business is not your field of work, departments such as Marketing and Information Technology exist in most organizations, and if that is of interest to you, count them in.
4. Prioritize: Make a list of the jobs you would like to apply to by application deadline dates, the likelihood of bagging an interview, and/or your organization of interest.
5. Cover Letters: Try to keep your cover letters to one page, unless you are e-mailing the employer directly, in which case you could go over by a quarter of a page. Don’t waste precious space summarizing your work history, but tell the employer about the unique skills, strengths, qualifications and work ethic that you could bring to the job. Tell them why you would be perfect for the job and the organization. If you are responding to a job advertisement, use keywords from the posting to emphasize your points.
6. Resume: Tailor your resume to each job description. Add or eliminate different job experiences, skills etc. based on what the employers are looking for. If the job posting requires “good interpersonal and oral communication skills” for an otherwise desk job, mention the summer/part-time job as a tour guide to highlight your people skills.
7. Interview: Be confident and look presentable, and ask questions about the organization, the workplace, your job and the compensation and benefits package. Remember that an interview is an opportunity for the candidate to gauge whether that job and the workplace are a good fit for him/her as well. Use the opportunity to gather information that would help you make an intelligent decision about whether or not you would like to work there.
8. It’s OK to Reject: If, for whatever reason, you are uncomfortable with any aspect of the potential job or the organization, don’t hesitate to reject the offer when it comes your way. It is very tempting, especially when your career seems uncertain, to accept any job as soon as it is offered. But it is better to say “no” to an inappropriate fit now than to be stuck in a job you hate.