“Success in life is not measured by our achievements; but by how we respond to setbacks.”
As a Recruiter, I speak to so many people about their struggle to find the ideal position, or to stand out amongst the crowd, when interviewing against other strong applicants. I fully appreciate that Job hunting can be a very difficult time and why it can put people off taking the risk of leaving a position they’re not even happy in, because of the fear of rejection or failure, when it comes to putting themselves out there, in the job market.
There are so many different things to think of when job searching, in this ever changing, digital world. Gone are the days where all you have to do is look through the classified section of the local paper – now, with social media, web advertising and of course networking, there are so many other avenues to explore that the process can be both very exciting but very daunting as well. We have put together some tips to help you through your job search process, whether that be because you are available immediately and need to find employment straight away, or because you are looking for your next challenge and want to put the feelers out to see what else you may be suited to. Either way, the struggle is real. If we can add value and support you through your process, we are half way to doing a great job for you!
At Collaborate Recruitment, we see hundreds of CVs every week, so we like to think we have a good handle on what is expected by Employers. It’s often the small things that are forgotten and overlooked – like spell check! It sounds simple, but if you have not presented CV in the best light, you will get overlooked. Ensure that your CV is well aligned, clearly set out, your fonts and font sizes are accurate and that you account for any gaps in employment, education etc. with simple explanations. For more information on how to easily lay out a CV, please feel refer to the Blog section on our website and read through “The Guide to Successful CV Writing” where we give a template example of a simple but effective CV Layout. https://collaboraterecruitment.com/the-guide-to-successful-cv-writing/
Depending on the vacancy that you are applying for, it may be an idea to edit your CV, to highlight specific skills or experience that suit the requirements of specific position you are applying for. Whilst this can be an admin heavy task, people looking at your CV are not necessarily mind readers - if an employer is asking for specific experience or skills that you have, but have not clearly stated in your CV, once again, you run the risk of being overlooked.
When I first moved to the UK from South Africa, my aim was simple…to find a job! I had only once experienced the support of a Recruitment agency in South Africa and was lucky enough to get the first job I interviewed for and stayed there, until I emigrated to the UK. When I arrived, I was overwhelmed by how many agencies there were and more so, how much competition there was in the candidate market! When I was offered a temporary position, I took this as a stepping stone and stop gap, to avoid unemployment at all costs. Whilst temping, I could continue the job search without the pressure of having to take the first position that came along, just to earn a wage. I didn’t do many temporary assignments, before securing a permanent position, but the variety of these assignments helped me gain confidence in different environments and taught me how to quickly adapt, because more often than not, I was covering absence, so little training was provided.
Whilst Temping is not everyone’s idea of fun, it can open doors! It may only be for a short time and if nothing else, may alleviate pressure, financially, which will ultimately boost your confidence when applying and interviewing for permanent positions. You never know what is around the next corner in life, so be open to new challenges, even if throwing yourself in the deep end of a temporary assignment is what you have to do, to get you through the job searching process.
Networking is what happens when people come together and communicate – We are not referring to just business related networking and it doesn’t have to be scary, either. As humans, we network without realising – chatting to someone at the gym, at a social barbeque or even whilst you scroll through facebook, Instagram or Linkedin. It is important to access your social network and find out what is actually happening around you. Ask friends and family what they do and what they might be looking for in a colleague or employee at their company. Share your past experiences and don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions. Your social networks can be some of the best routes to finding a new job. You are more likely to get a foot in the door if you are referred by a friend, acquaintance or family member.
Believe it or not recruiters and prospect employers may use the power of technology to Google, Facebook or check your Linkedin profile and scroll through your Twitter and Instagram accounts, if they are active too. Why, some would ask?? Your online presence is as important as the first impression you create when you meet someone face to face. Make sure that everything is up to date and communicating exactly what you want to world to know about you.
A side note about Social Media. Yes…Facebook and Instagram is personal to you…but it is also totally available online for anyone to search. So, unless you have locked down your privacy settings for anyone that is not in your inner circle, it’s not that personal. If it is online then it will be available for anyone with a web browser to see. Think about what you post online and who may see it!
When it comes to online presence, putting your cv onto job boards is another way of helping you with the search process. Whilst job searching is a proactive process, by ensuring that you publicise your availability, will also get recognised by Agencies and prospect employers, who are active members of various job boards. You can upload your CV and personal profiles to the likes of Indeed, Reed, CV Library, to name but a few….this is an excellent way to get recognised and if nothing else, will allow people to contact you to discuss opportunities that you may not have otherwise, seen yourself.
Employers can tell when employees are miserable. It comes through in job performance, office interactions and punctuality. For the sake of your own sanity and that of the employer – don’t just take a job to avoid unemployment of a gap in earnings. By saying yes to one thing, will mean that you are saying no to something else, even if you haven’t yet seen it! Contrary to this – don’t expect your dream job to arrive as soon as you open your email. There are those rare occasions where an opportunity presents itself completely out of the blue, but more often, you have to interview for a number of roles, before the perfect position comes along to allow you to start shaping your career. In saying this, we also encourage everyone to look at opportunities with an open mind, before accepting or declining - It is a common mistake, while struggling to find work, to turn down opportunities that might not seem “perfect” for you. While we would not recommend doing a job that you feel compromises your integrity or leaves you more drained than encouraged – be open minded and consider new challenges, that could later open you up to a world of new career opportunities.
Remember, no matter what job title you have…or don’t…you are individual. There is nobody like you. You matter and you are not defined by your job, or lack thereof. Your worth is not just in what you do but in who you are!