Conducting a full-fledged career search can easily feel like a full-time job of its own. From conducting research, sending emails, boosting your brand on social media, to follow-up—it's time consuming! While there’s no “easy” button for landing a job, there are certain things you can do to make the process much easier. Use these tips and tools to make your job search more effective, while saving you some time and headache.
Make a Plan with Daily Goals
When successful people are asked how they accomplished something big, most will say they “made a plan and stuck to it.” The same can apply for your job search. Set aside time each day and give yourself deadlines to keep yourself accountable. Your plan should keep track of the companies and contacts you’re targeting, so you’re not starting over each day. Break down larger goals into smaller ones so they don’t seem as lofty, such as “share one relevant article with my LinkedIn network today.”
Useful Tool: Google Alerts
If you’re targeting a specific company or industry, Google Alerts is a great tool to stay on top of the latest news and save you hours of surfing the web for relevant news stories. Just type keywords pertaining to your area of interest, and Google Alerts will send a notification/access to everything that’s published.
Keep up with Responses by Staying Organized
It’s likely you’re going to be messaging multiple contacts, filling out multiple applications, and setting up different interviews each day. Keep track of where you’ve applied, who you’ve talked to, and set specific dates you need to follow-up.
Useful Tool: Boomerang
Boomerang is a productivity app that can help you stay on top of messages throughout your job hunt. If you want to prepare a message and schedule it to send at a future time, or set up reminders to follow-up on an email, Boomerang is a great tool. It works on Gmail, Outlook and mobile phones (Android or iOS). Boomerang will even send you reminders for emails that are unopened or unanswered.
Useful Tool: Canned Responses
For Gmail users, this is a huge time saver. Canned Responses in Gmail allows you to prepare scripted replies and send them with one click.
How it works: In Gmail settings (the gear icon), navigate to the “Advanced” tab at the top, click “enable” for canned responses.
You can save as many responses as you like. Now, when asked a similar question, you can respond in seconds rather than minutes.
Keep Your LinkedIn Updated
In today’s digital age, you’d be surprised how many people don’t keep their professional profiles up to date. It’s likely this will be the first place hiring managers look for background information, keeping it updated can avoid additional back-and-forth messaging and keep hiring managers interested. That said, as a part of your job hunt you should make an effort to increase your professional presence within your industry’s online community.
Useful Tool: Flipboard
Flipboard can take all of the pain away from locating articles on interest and worth sharing with your online network. By signing up, you’ll receive curated stories from around the web based on your interests—delivered in a visual field and ready for easy sharing.
Partner with a Recruiter in Your Industry
Everyone can use a helping hand during their job search. Recruiters can sometimes get a bad rap, but a highly qualified recruiter, who understands your field, can be monumental in landing your next opportunity. They will source appropriate jobs for your skillset and preferences and get your resume in front of key hiring managers.