Updated: Feb 25, 2020
Are you fishing in the right pond?
That's a question you must ask yourself when conducting a job search. Five hours on the wrong job board couldn't equate to the value of thirty minutes spent on the right one. Some job boards are oversaturated with job openings that only serves as interviewing practice and opportunities to find out what you don't want in a job.
An illusion can occur that you are having a successful job hunt by fielding inquiries and interviews, but in all actuality, you are in a predicament where the job market is playing with your feelings. There aren't many more frustrating things on the job hunt than finding out a position is nothing as advertised while you are on an interview.
I highly recommend concentrating your job search efforts on LinkedIn. The platform is second to none because you can build advanced rapport with recruiters during the early stages of the interview process. Features such as mutual connections, education listings, recommendations on your profile, and its reflectiveness to other popular social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook make it easier to build relationships with recruiters versus other job search platforms.
Are you more comfortable with a friend request from a person with no mutual friends or one with plenty mutual friends? How insightful would it be to see a mutual friend have feedback written on their profile about the person that just sent you a request?
Example: When you get a friend request on Facebook or Instagram there would be a section where their social media friends say how they feel about the person sending you a request. There would be a section on their profile that says, “This person is full of drama” or “This person is a great friend to have.” That would save a lot of time and headaches.
The recommendations section is an opportunity to leverage on LinkedIn. It would go a long way to have recommendations on your profile that vouches for your work ethic, character, or abilities. A recruiter would be more enticed to call you in for an interview if seven people have great things to say about you in the recommendations section of your profile on LinkedIn.
A primary focus should be standing out from others who want the same position as you. Most people have between 0-3 recommendations on LinkedIn, and some don’t even know there is a recommendations section. Why not go above and beyond and acquire 5+? It would be worth setting aside time just for that. Also, think of how you consider reviews when making a purchase. If you don't worry about reviews, keep in mind that over 3/4th of shoppers consider reviews when shopping.
Remember that you are interviewing them also.
Do your homework on the company. Is this company looking to merge or get acquired in the next few years? Is this company facing any major lawsuits that could force it to go out of business? Does this company value your core principals? Do you believe in work-life balance, and does the company you are applying for believe that work is life and that the job is never truly done? All of this is researchable. Many times we wind up with jobs we don’t want due to our own fault.
Time is one thing that you don't want to waste. As appealing as a few paychecks may sound, it could set you back from a long term payout and happiness. Would you sacrifice two paychecks for a job that could fulfill your happiness and provide you with a sustainable career? Sometimes we make sacrifices like this when we reach for immediate gratification on the job hunt.
Try to build a bridge in the company. That can come from an employee referral, showing up at a company based event or job fair to have a face to face interaction with company personnel, or having a personal connection with the company.
A company referral will go a long way with the decisionmakers, especially if it's from a reputable employee. Did you have a friend that worked there who didn't have a great reputation? You might not want to bring them up.
Face to face interactions are a lost art. It is much easier to leave a lasting impression in-person versus on the phone or via the application. Search job fairs or track the company website for events to get this face to face interaction with your prospective company. Even if you were denied by their computer system or on a first-round interview, this might be your second chance. Take advantage of it.
Do you have a personal connection with the company, or did you learn some recent news about the company? Communicate that with the recruiter to let them know your level of interest.
Chip away at the right job and track your efforts. I highly recommend applying for a certain amount of jobs consistently versus applying for a ton in one night. You can learn more about the market and be updated on fresh opportunities if you are consistent with your efforts. Each person's available time and need for a new opportunity differs, but hypothetically speaking, if you applied for 20 jobs a day, I am confident that you would at least come across five great opportunities a week.
I wish you the best of luck on your job search, and I hope that these strategies provided value for you!