The Art of the Job Search – Always Be Looking

You may have heard the phrase “Always Be Learning.” To be the best you can be, in your professional and personal life, this certainly holds true. We can and should always be learning. Learning doesn’t cease just because we receive a degree or reach a certain age. We can always learn more about our surroundings and others.

There is another phrase to follow in life – Always Be Looking. If the recession and economic uncertainty of past years taught us one thing, it could be that we never know the real security of our jobs and lifestyles. One day we can have it all, and the next day be forced to look for a new opportunity. While the shock of being laid off or having our companies close cannot be lessened through preparation, we should always be learning and looking. Looking for other opportunities in our field, or in other fields, and keeping our options open.

Know Where Your Industry is Going. Are the number of job opportunities growing in your field, or are positions like yours disappearing? By constantly looking for job opportunities, you can spot trends, gain the education you need, and be proactive in your career.

Give Yourself Goals. Research jobs you would want down the road. If you are in college or a training school, look for positions you would want to apply to after graduation. If you are in a field and want to move up (and who doesn’t), look at the descriptions and requirements of those jobs that would appeal to you in 1 year, 5 years, or more. Create a path to success by gaining the education and experience needed for those positions.

Create a Game Plan for a Worst-Case Scenario. If you lost your job next week, what would be your first steps? By regularly researching the types of jobs available in your field, and the companies where you would want to work, you would have knowledge of where to begin your next aggressive job search.

Job.com is a job board with a focus of putting America Back to Work. If you are ready to continue (or begin) your resolution to Always Be Looking, visit our site to conduct tailored job searches and research tools available to reach employers and recruiters across the nation. As always, the Job.com team wishes you success!

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The Art of the Job Search – The Job Application Process

ImageAs you maneuver your way through your job hunt, you will potentially complete several job applications. You may be filling out applications online, so they may be pre-screened by an employer. Any tests you complete at the employer’s office could also be considered part of your application process. Even if you provide a resume and cover letter, many employers require a separate application in their hiring process. Here are some ways to breeze through a job application, while providing specific information for the employer.

Make your application match your resume. Be sure any education or work history appear as they do on your resume, with consistent dates, job titles, and more. Any discrepancies could be a red flag for the employer.

Practice filling out an application. Sample applications appear everywhere online. Practice completing different types of applications, and bring them along when you fill out your potential employer’s application for reference.

When applying in-person, without an appointment, take the application home. You can take your time completing it, making sure it’s thorough, error-free and easy to read. Whenever applying in person, however, be ready for an on-the-spot interview! You are showing the employer your ambitiousness for the position, and they may want to speak right away.

When applying online, as more and more employers require, follow instructions exactly and review each section before hitting “Submit.” If possible, save a copy of the application or the resulting email confirmation. This will help you keep track of the digital applications you have submitted for follow up.

Be ready to take a test as part of the application. Screening applicants may be come in the form of typing, general math or other assessments. Sometimes, an employer will require a drug test before proceeding to the interview phase. The timely and thorough completion of these assessments may be what sets you apart from your competition.