Being Proactive to get Progress: How to Become a Job Seeking Pro

This article is authored and submitted to us by Sally-Anne Blanshard, Corporate Tailored Learning Solutions Consultant at the Australian Institute of Management, part of the Career Money Life Supplier Community.

Looking for a new job is difficult, and the amount of effort you must put into a single job search is enough to make anyone frustrated. 

For those who are employed, it can feel like a big task to put in this additional time and effort once you get home. And for those not working, it’s completely understandable to get fed up with focusing so intensely on a search that appears to return very little.

There are two camps that job seekers generally fall into — reactive searchers and proactive searchers.

Let’s identify some examples of each of these behaviours. 

Reactive

  • Browsing through job adverts in the newspaper or industry magazines
  • Logging online to job boards like Seek every other day and responding to ads posted
  • Meeting recruiters and being registered on their database

Proactive

  • Logging on to a job board and creating an email alert with filters that notifies you of a specific and relevant role.
  • Connecting with old colleagues/new connections via platforms like LinkedIn to find out if they know anyone that may be interested in your skillset
  • Attending relevant industry or sector networking events
  • Identifying gaps in your skillset and investing in learning
  • Contacting employers directly that you want to work for
  • Uploading your resume on to employer databases

Of the techniques listed above, which have you used to find a new job?

The future of work is evolving, and the employment market has changed in Australia; there are more candidates now and seemingly fewer jobs.  This means that the way you go about looking for a job must change too.

Larger companies have in-house recruitment teams managing assignments and may have invested in online filtering programs.  You can upload your details to some company websites and they will contact you if a role comes up.  Optimising your resume with keywords is a must in this instance as it is becoming commonplace for computers to scan them; your resume could be disqualified before ever being read by a human.

Recruiters have also changed the way they work, making sure to be proactive with the right candidates while weaker candidates are simply registered on their database.  They are skilled in managing the process of recruitment, they are good negotiators, and, remembering that their role is to make a fee, they are great salespeople.  Don’t forget that their work is bilateral too — recruiters can sell a job to a candidate as well as a candidate to a client/job.

Recruitment companies undoubtedly play a vital role in the job seeking puzzle, but what about your own efforts, your own research and exploration?  Which do you think would be more rewarding in the long run: someone finding you a job or you finding your own job?

Time is a significant barrier when looking for a new role. Consider how you plan for networking events. The expectation is not to be attending one every week; just identify a few professional groups that may be of interest and think of the audience attending.  You never know there may be someone who knows someone. In addition, networking helps take away those nerves associated to meeting new people as you are forced to enter a room full of people and introduce yourself.

Attending a training workshop can be a very time-efficient endeavour. Not only will you be learning new skills that make you more valuable to prospective employers, you get the chance to talk directly with your peers.

Think about managing your job search as if you are managing a process. Being proactive, productive, and making progress.

Soon you will be a job seeking pro.

Sally-Anne Blanshard is the Account Manager for Career Money Life and represents the Australian Institute of Management helping individuals and corporates access quality training and professional development courses. For more information about you can make yourself more relevant and competitive in your job search – please get in touch.

Sal.blanshard@aim.com.au 0433162244

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