Finding a job has changed in today’s job market. Gone are the days when you would walk in and submit your resume and possibly interview the same day. Now that everything is digital the game has changed and job seekers have to adjust to be successful in finding a job in today’s market. Here are a few ways job searching has changed for job seekers:
1. Electronic is the new normal. Gone are the days of submitting paper resumes and standing out by format and paper choice. While resumes are still important, once you land the interview, content is the key to get the interview in the first place. With today’s applicant tracking systems employers can filter applicants based on data in a matter of minutes. To ensure you are in the top of the heap focus on the content. Tailor your resume directly to the job posting requirements, this ensures the necessary key words are there to align with the job posting. You should also still include a customized cover letter attachment. Cover letters are still important in this digital age be sure to use them to highlight and intrigue the reader to give your resume more consideration.
2. Source the hidden jobs. Hidden jobs are the ones that never get published but are filled through network affiliations and referrals. The number of job seekers is still relatively high per job posting so in order to streamline recruiting efforts professionals are sourcing applicants before doing a mass job posting. This saves critical time and often leads to quality hires. How to do you tap into these hidden networks? Job seekers should be actively involved with networking groups, professional organizations and service groups. These areas often provide you with leads to these hidden job opportunities. You can also develop contacts specific to the organization or industry you are targeting so that when opportunities come open you are well connected.
3. Social media matters. Are you up-to-date on the myriad of social media today: Facebook, LinkedIn, twitter are just the beginning check out this link of networking sites: List of Social Networking websites. You name it you can find it via social networking sites. The important point here is to be present on a social networking site, LinkedIn is the preferred site for professionals. Have a strategy to utilize the site/s you choose to employ. Be aware of your content, keep it professional and targeted to what your skills and strengths are and how you can be an asset to a company. If you are intimidated by social media attend a class at your local university, many offer these classes or check with the local unemployment career office for resources.
4. Stay current on skills and technology. Today’s employers need hit the road ready employees. The best way to get a job is stay current and on the cutting edge of your field in order to be marketable to employers. Ensure you stay up-to-date on the latest technology for your field. In today’s market a year can make a huge difference in an industry so read and research to stay current. Attend training seminars that are relevant to job skill areas and pursue a professional credential to help set you apart. If you are unemployed keep your skills relevant by volunteering your services or expertise to organizations that need assistance during your job search period. They benefit and you get to fill in a gap on your resume with relevant work application.
While many things have changed in the job search, job seekers should always remember the value in some things that stay the same such as proper cover letters, thank you letters—bonus points for handwritten notes—following up to interviews and personal character. All these play a role in the job search. If you can master the new job landscape you will be well on your way to your next successful opportunity.