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How to conduct a job search in 2014

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For those of you that spent the majority of 2013 looking for a job, you can get ready to say “goodbye” to 2013. We will soon be in a new year and 2014 can be your year to re-enter the workforce and get back to work. So how do you go about conducting your job search in the new year?

Don’t waste time spinning your wheels anymore or doing the same things that generate the same results. When 2014 rolls around next week, hit the ground running, but this time, consider a new spin on familiar job search methods:

  1. Networking: Who have you not contacted in the last 6 months? Who still does not know that you are out of work? Utilize January to reach out to the network of contacts that maybe you have neglected and be sure you to let the ones closest to you (family, friends, and colleagues) know about your job situation. One last thing, who have you helped lately? What referrals or introductions have you made? Remember, networking is a two-way street and sometimes, what goes around, comes around. So look for opportunities to assist others while you continue your networking efforts in 2014.
  2. Following up on jobs that went “cold”: Surely you applied to numerous jobs where you never heard anything back from HR or the hiring manager. If it has been more than three months since you applied, why not reach back out to say hello and to see if the position was filled? Chances could be the position was placed on hold, removed from the budget, or better yet, the position could still be open. You just might have another opportunity to sell yourself again or even talk yourself up for a new opportunity that might exist.
  3. Working with recruiters: Has it been a while since you last talked with your recruiters? Did you work with any in 2013 that simply never got back to you with any jobs that you might be a good fit for? If so, then maybe it is time to start fresh, with a new group of recruiters that don’t know you and your credentials. Research recruiters on LinkedIn and Google and try to identify recruiters that specialize in your industry and line of work. If you enjoyed working with your recruiters in 2013, then at least reach out to them, send them an updated resume, and see if they are working on any new opportunities.
  4. Utilizing a target company list: What companies would you really love to work for? Have you even given this thought? Or did you spend 2013 like most job seekers, only applying to job postings that you found or that were sent to you by a referral? A target company list will focus your job search efforts and make your networking activity more productive because you are looking for connections and inside information at specific companies.
  5. Conducting informational interviews: If you were not conducting informational interviews in 2013, then gear up and get ready to hit the ground running in 2014. What are informational interviews? These are one-on-one meetings with key contacts (known or unknown) that can provide inside information and contacts as it relates to your target company list. It’s a form of networking, but you have a definite agenda in mind. Maybe you want to work for Microsoft and through your research and networking efforts, you identify a contact that has connections at the company, works for the company, or can otherwise provide key information important to you.


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