How to Expand Your Options to Find the Best Job for You
One of the most daunting aspects of a job search is determining the right job for you. When you have high standards, it can take a long time. If you’re frustrated because you haven’t found your dream job, you might need to revise your strategy or expand your network. If you’re stuck and not sure how to maximize your chances, reach out to one of our career coaches for assistance. They can help you define your goals and devise an actionable plan.
Let’s look at places where you can search for jobs and how you can increase your job opportunities.
Where to search for a job
The easiest strategy is to google the type of job you want and hope that something good pops up. You may be able to locate some great jobs, but the easy way isn’t usually the best way. You’re closing yourself off to a lot of opportunities with this approach, and the jobs that come up in the search results may not even be relevant—for example, they may be in a different state. It takes a little more effort to reliably unearth high-quality job opportunities.
Dig around on online job boards
This is usually a job seeker’s first step. You can scroll through job openings on online job boards like Indeed and even create and submit your resume directly through the platform (although this isn’t necessarily the best approach—you’re much more likely to get hired with a professionally written resume tailored for that job). You can customize your search parameters to narrow down the results to jobs relevant to you. These platforms simplify your job search because you can easily and effectively apply for vacant positions even from your phone.
Visit company websites
If there’s a particular company you want to work for, visit its website and browse its careers page. If there are openings that interest you, apply directly from the website. Employers prefer candidates who take this approach because it suggests a higher level of enthusiasm and familiarity with the company. It indicates that you want to work for that particular company, whereas it’s more about the job itself on a job board. Also, if you can confirm that your values align with those of the company, you can feel more confident applying for a job there.
Attend job fairs
Job fairs, which are common at colleges and universities, are designed to help those pursuing a particular career connect with people who work for relevant employers. You can even apply for jobs and have interviews at job fairs. They allow recruiters to see you before you even submit a resume, so dress nicely and put your best foot forward. This face-to-face interaction can greatly increase your chances of landing a job. Even if you don’t get an offer, these fairs are valuable networking opportunities that can help you advance your career, so get out there and socialize.
Seek out referrals
A good way to jump the line during the hiring process is to have someone at the company refer you, thus vouching that you will be a good addition to the team. Referrals could come from family members, friends, or someone you’ve connected with on LinkedIn. Sometimes, employers offer incentives to staff members who refer people, so this could also benefit your contact at the company. If you don’t know anyone working at your dream company, start growing your network.
Volunteer at a company
Some companies provide internship opportunities, allowing you to work for them without (or with little) pay while gaining valuable experience. This lets them evaluate your work ethic and decide whether to hire you for a paid position. Don’t take volunteer work lightly—think of it as an audition. Just because you’re not getting paid doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it your best. Use every opportunity to showcase your skills and demonstrate why you deserve a paid position at the company so they can hire you with confidence.
Other ways to search
Approaches such as cold calling, walking in and dropping off your resume in person, or looking in the newspaper for a job are not that common anymore, but they can still be effective. If you’re walking by a place and see a sign that says “Help wanted,” pop in to see what they need. You may just walk out of there with a job!
Ways to expand your job opportunities
Finding a job is tough, so you want to open yourself to as many opportunities as possible. Let’s take a look at a few ways to do that.
Networking is one of the most valuable ways to bolster your hiring chances. It has become an essential part of the job search in modern times, so when you look for a job, work on expanding your connections. The best way to network is by creating an account on LinkedIn, where you can meet hundreds of professionals in your field and even people who work for the company where you want to apply. Put yourself out there and connect with fellow professionals. Who knows? They may help you get just the job you want. However, make sure you can offer them something in return—it’s all about reciprocity.
Update your resume
As your work history and skillset change, update your resume accordingly and make sure it follows the latest trends. If it is currently outdated, bring it back to speed, and make a habit of keeping it updated, even after you land a job. Updating your resume monthly is a good target. Also, be sure to tailor your resume to each job you apply for. Employers look for specific items, so if you submit a generic resume, you’ll probably never be considered for the position. No matter what job you’re applying for, you should always hand in a tailored resume.
Apply even if you don’t meet all the requirements
Apply for lots of jobs, even for ones you may be underqualified for. You may not meet all the requirements, but if you feel you’re a good candidate for the position, apply anyway. If you prove on your resume that you can do the job well, the hiring manager may just take a chance on you. Then, when you make it to the interview, you can continue impressing them with your skills, qualifications, passion, and confidence. Of course, you should have most of the listed qualifications, but it’s worth applying even if you’re missing a few.
Be appropriate on social media
Since social media is a huge part of modern life, recruiters typically look up candidates on social media platforms to get an idea of who they’re dealing with. If you’re posting party pictures and photos you shouldn’t probably be making public, hiring managers may be inclined to ditch your resume. That doesn’t mean you can’t have fun—you should just keep it off social media. Before embarking on your job search, go through your social media profiles and delete or make private any potentially objectionable content. Don’t forget to check for any pictures where your friends have tagged you!
Searching for a job these days differs greatly from searching for a job years ago. It’s important to know the best places and the best approaches to boost your chances in the job market. As you undertake this journey, hire our resume experts and career coaches to smooth your way.