Finding a new or better job is often at the top of many New Year’s resolution lists. (Where does your resolution rank? http://www.usa.gov/Citizen/Topics/New-Years-Resolutions.shtml) Combine that with the current unemployment rate, and you’ve got a lot of people on the hunt.
Don’t let this daunt you – own it, and make your resolution a reality by using these pro tips:
- If you’re currently unemployed (and according to the latest wave of Scarborough research, 38% of New Yorkers are), finding a new job should be your job. Set hours for yourself – don’t sleep in. Wake up at the normal time you’d be rising to go to work, and get onto the job boards. Take normal breaks, like you would at a regular job, so you don’t get frustrated or burn out.
- If you’ve got a job, but you’re in the market for a new one, it’s challenging to find the time for a dedicated job search. (How to be a stealthy job hunter? Read more here: Job Searching When You Have a Job) Consider working with a recruiter. Make a regular date to catch up with them, during your lunch hour or after work. Don’t look for a new job on your employer’s dime – you could find yourself suddenly unemployed.
- Send your resume to a staffing firm. Make it clear that you’re currently employed – so they can call you at a designated time. Request that they give you advance notice (whenever possible) for interviews, so you can work your current job schedule around it without alerting suspicion.
- Look for work in many varied places. Everyone is going to be on the ‘big boards’ – seek out different sources. Visit the websites of brands you admire – check out their ‘career’ sections. Go to the websites of your city, state and local governments. Let your trusted friends and family know you’re on the hunt. Most jobs are found through networking: http://www.right.com/news-and-events/press-releases/2012-press-releases/item23658.aspx. Pick up a newspaper’s classified section – you may be surprised at what you find!
- Consider adding to or improving your skill set with a course or certification. If you’re currently out of work, this is a very valuable use of your time. When you land an interview, your potential employer will be happy to hear, “I actually just completed a course in X software!” Hiring managers love to meet potential employees who invest in their careers – it’s a sure sign the candidate is ambitious and focused.
- DON’T GET DISCOURAGED. Finding a new job is stressful – and when so many people are all looking at the same time (like January 2!), it may take longer for hiring managers to sort through the pile of applicants and schedule interviews. Keep a positive outlook. If you find yourself getting frustrated and upset with your search, take a day or two off. Do some volunteering to take your mind off it – the Corporation for National and Community service found that volunteers have a 27 percent higher likelihood of finding a job after being out of work than non-volunteers (http://www.nationalservice.gov/impact-our-nation/research-and-reports/volunteering-pathway-employment-report) – even LinkedIn recently increased the functionality and information with regard to your volunteer experience.
New Year – new career! Make it happen! Good luck!