Finding a job is your job right now. So work 8 hours a day doing something relating to your job search and self-marketing. The more you put yourself out there, the higher the chances of being seen.
Ways to make your job search a full-time job:
• Stick to a daily schedule. Create a to-do list and cross them off as you go; this gives you a sense of accomplishment even during down-times.
• Check job boards daily and see if any new jobs were posted, in case your alert notification service missed anything.
• Send printed resumes in the mail. Few people do this any more, which is why it is effective for you.
• Target companies you want to work for and know where you can add value, then network or market yourself into an interview.
• Contact recruiters and temporary work agencies. Recruiters work for you and the good ones do not charge you to help you find employment. However, do not bug recruiters constantly. If they need someone with your skills, they will call you. They might not have an opening right away that fits your qualifications, but if they do, they will call you.
• Only apply to the openings that fit within your realm. Recruiters do get the “jack of all trades” candidates who, in actuality, only fit the bill for one or two jobs at most. So be aware of your resume submissions. Do not market yourself as a “jack of all trades” or a “fast learner”. Market yourself as an expert in a certain industry/field. Hiring managers are not going to figure out where you might fit, they want to know if you fit their immediate need.
• Apply to higher positions than your current position. For your next job, why not go from a rank-and-file worker to a manager? If you are an exempt or professional worker, set your sights high and become a leader.
• Follow the job posting directions and make sure you do what they tell you to do, if you want to apply to their job. They implement rules for a reason.
• Read industry magazines. Keep up with trends and developments in your field.
• Network with industry experts and other people that can help you find a job and create your own advisory board to consult with when you need information or assistance.
• Create an online presence. Sign up for industry blogs, social networking sites and career sites.
• In a worst-case scenario, be flexible to relocating. It is a part of job hunting these days.
Right Place, Right Time…Right Person
Right place: Any place can be the right place, so make the most of where ever you are. An interview, career fair, career mixer, even the grocery store can be a networking opportunity that can turn into a new job or career.
Right time: It is always the right time. Whether they are hiring or advertising a position or not, network with the company decision makers.
Right person: Find the top 10 companies you want to work for and prioritize them. Research the company’s senior management on LinkedIn and Google. Contact them via LinkedIn, their company email, or call the company and ask to speak to them directly.
If you reach someone who can tell you about what the hiring manager is looking for, ask them:
• What are they looking for in a candidate?
• What are they definitely not looking for?
• What turns them off about a candidate?
• Are they having any issues in filling this position?
Once you reach the hiring manager, give them your elevator speech. It is very difficult because you are writing (a resume, cover letter or email) or talking to someone you do not know. So it must be customized for the position they are filling!