Searching for a job may be the hardest work a person may ever do! A serious job search requires spending as much as 40 hours per week.
Employers’ Expectations – Conveying how you can contribute to the employer’s business needs when filling out a job application, résumé and during an interview is very important. Keep the basic needs of employers in mind:
- Employers need to make money
- Employers need to save money
- Employers need a problem-free work environment
- Employers need people who get along well with others
Having clearly defined occupational goals and objectives are required for an effective job search. No one is really looking for “anything.” Every job seeker has requirements for employment and limitations on their current qualifications. Without clear job search goals, the search will become aimless and ineffective.
Gather and Organize – Begin your job search by gathering and organizing all the information you need to sell your qualifications and satisfy the needs of a prospective employer.
Identify Skills – Next, complete a thorough identification and analysis of your skills. Employers not only want to know where you have worked, they want to know what you can do. If you were looking to purchase a product that would cost you thousands of dollars a year for many years, you also would want to know what it could do.
Personal Data Sheet – Prepare a personal data sheet with all your employment-related information. This will make employment applications easier to complete. Second, write one or more résumés that advertise your skills to an employer.
Now you are ready to begin seeking that new job. The job market is constantly changing. During one period of time job opportunities may be scarce, during another period they may be plentiful. Regardless of job market conditions, there is always strong competition for the better jobs. Successful candidates are those who use up-to-date job search techniques.
The Hidden Job Market – Experts agree that today 80 percent or more of job openings are not advertised. Most employment opportunities are hidden. A primary reason is simply that most employers do not need to advertise; they have enough applicants without it. Another reason is that employers prefer to hire on a referral from someone they trust.
There are a variety of strategies that increase your chances of identifying job openings and breaking into the “hidden job market.” These techniques include: networking, informational interviewing, direct employer contact, employment services, and utilizing Internet technology.
Networking – Job search networking is a targeted effort to talk to people about your job search. It should not be limited to casual conversations with people you meet. It should be a calculated campaign to contact people for ideas, suggestions and information. Networking is not new; it is simply the sharing of information and resources with others. Everyone carries with them a wealth of information and insight.
What Do Employers Want?
Employers want to hire people who are:
- Punctual (be on time!)
- Able to demonstrate their experience/skills
- Clean and neat in appearance