5 Critical Steps to Finding
a New Job Fast!
Summary: There are 5 key areas in a job search – including promoting yourself with reference letters and creating a powerful professional brand – that can help you find work fast.
There are 5 basic steps in any job search. How well you perform in these areas will determine the speed and ease with which you land a new job. Failing to optimize your performance for any of these steps can dramatically lower your chances of finding work within a reasonable time frame.
Review Your Resources
This is the time to look back over your job history and identify those experiences and relationships that will assist you in gaining new employment. Very few job candidates collect reference letters from previous employers. Any manager or executive you have reported to over the past 7 years could be a valid source for a written recommendation. When you receive a written reference, it could open your eyes to what your previous boss found most valuable about you. That’s information you could highlight later in a job interview.
Fine Tune Your Resume & Branding
A resume that targets the key skills and responsibilities for a specific job position with a powerful summarization of your achievements is absolutely vital. It’s well worthwhile to have your resume developed by a consultant who knows what recruiters want in a top job candidate. Your LinkedIn profile is an additional aspect of your professional branding that boosts your credibility and visibility. Double check any publicly viewable information that’s available through a Google search of your name to make sure your online presence displays you in a positive light.
Expand Your Network
In this economy, there’s no shame in being out of work. Let everyone know that you are looking for a job. This includes social “friends” on Facebook and professional contacts in your industry. If you’re not a member of a professional association, join one now. There’s no telling who might know about a great job opportunity. You could even attend a local pink slip party to get some instant face time with local recruiters and HR professionals who are looking for talent. The more people you have in your network, the better your chances of finding a good job match.
Hone Your Interview Skills
Interviewing is often the most stressful part of a job search. However, if your resume is strong enough to convince the recruiter that you are worth a phone call, you are already a strong contender for the job. You can prepare for interviews just as you would for any other test – if you have the right information. For example, you need to devote your energy to preparing for the questions recruiters are actually likely to ask rather than the ones that you are afraid they might ask. Additionally, you need to know which questions you should ask to gain the respect of your interviewer and establish a good rapport.
This applies to every stage of your job search. Often, it’s about being proactive and investigating local companies to understand their hiring needs. Sometimes, it’s about being decisive (but polite) in an interview instead of beating around the bush when you need an answer to a question. More than anything else, competing means being willing to put in the extra time on preparation and follow up. If you are really serious about getting work fast, invest in job search, resume writing, and interview coaching resources. These services offer the advantage of helping you market yourself effectively without a lot of trial and error.
Jerome Young is the founder of www.AttractJobsNOW.com, a recruiting and job search consulting firm that has achieved over 100 job search success stories in the last year.
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How to Write a Resume Summary Section That Gets Interviews!
The navel gazing that’s typical in an outdated “objective statement” style resume header isn’t going to help you get ahead in today’s increasingly competitive job market. Instead, you should use the opening section of your resume to summarize what makes you a good fit for an open position. The summary is one of the most important factors in determining whether a recruiter will call you for an interview. It needs to be compelling and concise.
Present a Well Rounded Picture
You can use the acronym CEASE to help you remember what to include in your summary. Get this right, and you can “cease” looking for work sooner than later since you’ll land a job faster. Here’s a basic overview:
Characteristics: 2-3 personal/professional traits that make you a good fit for the job and the company
Experience: Number of years you’ve worked in the industry or other experience that makes you qualified for the position
Achievements: 2-3 things you have a strong track record in accomplishing for previous employers
Skills: 2-3 high value abilities you’ve demonstrated that are relevant to the position in question
Expertise: Relevant education, certification, or special experience that other job candidates might not have
The order in which you list these factors can vary. Put your strongest areas forward. For example, if you haven’t been working in the industry that long, you might not want to lead with the “experience” item. Whatever you do, keep it brief!
Give Them What They Want
Do you know what reflective listening is? You listen to what someone is saying and then “reflect” it back to them to show that you hear them and understand their needs. You can do the same thing with a customized summary section. When you tailor your resume to a specific job posting, you are really saying “I’m hearing you say you need a job candidate with the following qualities…” Don’t copy a job posting word for word into your resume summary. Instead, identify the top qualities and abilities the recruiter is looking for and reflect these in your summary.
Also, make sure you precisely match the terminology used in the posting. For example, if the job title in the posting is “Purchasing Director”, you would use that term instead of “Director of Procurement” in your resume when talking about your previous experience directing a purchasing department. If the posting talks about “supply chain management”, you would highlight your achievements in things like reducing lead time by developing effective “supply chain management” strategies. The terms used in the job posting are the ones recruiters will be looking for both visually and through computer searches when they sift through resumes.
Avoid Making Assumptions
The things you think are your best traits and abilities aren’t necessarily valuable to recruiters. One way to ensure you aren’t wasting valuable space on your resume (or coming across as clueless) is to have a professional resume writer assist with honing your summary section. A qualified resume specialist knows your industry, has a good handle on what recruiters really care about and what prompts them to pick up the phone and call you.
Jerome Young is the founder of www.AttractJobsNOW.com, a job search consulting firm that has achieved over 100 job search success stories in the last year.
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