Now that the holiday season is over and you successfully cleaned up your mailbox, organized your desk and got used to being at work again, it is time to take some time to reflect on the past year, make plans for your professional development and take actions towards finding your dream job. Our little guide below will give you directions and resources on how to get started and make the time consuming process of finding, cultivating, and culling as many job opportunities as possible a little less overwhelming.
Good luck and happy job-hunting!
- Target your job search
Take the time to think about what type of job you want, the responsibilities you would enjoy and the industry you would like to work for instead of just applying to every job you find on the web. If you don’t yet know what you want to do, figure it out. Build a target company list and figure out which companies you want to apply to, and learn a little bit about each.
- Update your resume
As your resume is your primary tool to show your future employer why you are a strong candidate, make sure that it will get noticed, and not end up junked, by hiring professionals. Make sure you’re being thoughtful about how you’re showcasing your skills and experiences by creating a readable document. Make every word count and focus on your most impressive set of experiences and strengths. Optimizing your resume for keywords is crucial; the more often keywords in your resume match with the requirements of the advertised job, the greater the chance your resume will be reviewed and considered.
- Complete your LinkedIn Profile
As the popularity of social media has grown among hiring professionals recently, you’ll want to pay particular attention to your LinkedIn profile as it is a valuable tool to connect with potential employers, recruiters and professionals in your industry. Dedicate some time to write an effective summary which describes your professional experience and personality and clearly states what type of positions are you looking for. When describing your past work experiences use phrases which are likely to be searched by hiring managers in your industry. Make sure you know how to fill out most sections of your profile.
- Get out there and network
One of the most important parts of really starting your job search is activating connections both inside and outside of your network. With more and more jobs not being publicly advertised, but spread through professional networks and word of mouth, having an established network in your targeted industry or profession is important. Keep in mind though that people can’t help you unless they know you’re looking; thus; make sure you inform your connections. You can also turn to your network to get more information about a particular field or to find industry contacts. You can maximize your networking efforts by strategizing your networking for 2016.
- Learn something new
Brush up your professional or technical skills by attending online classes, seminars, workshops or webinars. Besides improving your skills and gaining helpful insights, this will demonstrate your willingness to learn and eagerness to improve. Additionally, you can build valuable connections with like-minded individuals. You can find interesting online courses from various providers.
- Contact a recruiter
As finding the right positions for you may take some time , even if you aren’t actively searching you should contact a recruiter as soon as you think you may want a new job,. Recruiters have access to some of the best openings around and are there for you to explore future job opportunities, provide industry insights, and advise you on career development. In order to get the most out of your recruiter connections, learn how to effectively work with recruiters.