In the last two decades the job search experience has changed drastically. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you navigate the digital landscape in search of employment.
1. A Job Search is Complex, But The Internet Helps
The Google search experience has spoiled us. Today, when we go online we expect instant answers. We expect to find what we’re looking in the first three results, and if it doesn't, we change our search. This approach normally works when looking for websites, information on specific topic, or items to buy.
A job search is quite different. In a job search, you may not know exactly what you are looking for. Unless your career is very specialized, such as radiology technician or auto mechanic, you probably have an idea of the right job, but there are a number of titles that could fit. There isn't a definitive "answer" for you to discover. You'll have to look through a number of listings before you find something that sounds good. It’s unlikely that ideal job is going to appear on the first search result page. And once you find that ideal job listing, you have to go through the steps of applying, and hopefully interviewing and getting the job. It’s more likely that you will have to find multiple “ideal” job listings before you find the right job
Searching for jobs online may be an onerous process, but it’s better than it was before the digtial age. Everyone used to rely on newspaper classifieds, and job seekers would travel from office to office with resume in hand. With today's handy job search engines, we can do most all of our job search from home. We just have to be willing to look through more than one page of job listings, and put in the extra time.
2. Repeat Your Search Often
Since employers post jobs every day of the week, looking once is not enough; you have to check back frequently. The sooner you find out about a job and apply, the better chance you’ll have of getting an interview.
Most job search sites have features to assist with this. Simply Hired features a "Date Posted" filter. Specifically, if you use the "Since Last Visit" filter you'll ensure you never miss a new job listing.
3. Set Up Email Alert
But you might not have time to check back every day, especially if you already have a job. Fortunately, you don’t have to worry about good job postings slipping through the cracks--you can set up an email alert.
Most job search site, including Simply Hired, allow you to set up searches based on your keywords and location. Once set up, you’ll receive an email each day with all jobs posted since your last alert.
4. Get Social by Networking
Because the Internet makes it easier to find jobs, more qualified candidates can discover and apply to the same job. This high level of competition means you have to set yourself apart from other job seekers. The most essential technique is networking.
One way that you can network is by getting in touch with the recruiters and hiring managers at the companies where you hope to work. It might mean meeting them for an informational interview, but it could also means connecting with them via Twitter, LinkedIn, etc, and letting them know you’re applying to an open position. A personal connection will distinguish you from other applicants. On Simply Hired, you can use Who Do I Know feature, which allows you to sign in to Facebook and LinkedIn. After that, every time you search for a job you will see the people you are connected to who work for that employer. Try it and you might be suprised how much your existing network can help you.
5. Apply with Purpose
When you find a job that you are interested in, make sure your resume and cover letter convey your skills in a way that matches the job. Do the extra work of customizing your resume and cover letter for each job. If you’re not willing to put in the extra time, it means you probably don’t really want the job.
Be realistic about how many jobs you can apply for. Personalized cover letters and resumes take time to put together. Delivering a customized job application to one or two employers per day will be worth more than blindly sending out 100 resumes.
6. The Hard Work is Worth It
Technology is supposed to be making our lives easier, but job search is ultimately about what it has always been: meeting the right people--that particular match of skills and personality and timing and location that makes it all worthwhile. The Internet makes job search convenient, but that doesn't mean that the job of your dreams is going to fall into your lap. Your resumes and cover letters must be error-free, in your interviews you must be poised and well-prepared, and you must be ready to start your new job when the employer wants you. It may not be as simple as clicking on the first Google result and finding exactly what you want, but if you put in consistent effort use the web intelligently, you’ll land that next great job before you know it.
Check out the graphic below for more info on Simply Hired's search features.