How to effectively search this market and make an application which puts the odds in your favour
Bearing in mind the relative sizes of the advertised and unadvertised markets, the average job seeker will spend too much time searching and applying for advertised jobs and not enough in finding the hidden jobs.
Why? Because it’s easy, or appears to be.
At one time job searching was simply a matter of buying the half dozen or so local and national newspapers on the day the job adverts appeared with the addition of a couple of industry specific magazines, scouring these for details of likely jobs and sending off applications before the closing date.
Then along came the Internet. There are now over a thousand, possibly thousands, of Job Boards and other places where jobs are advertised. New vacancies are posted on a daily basis, applications can be made on-line and very quickly. Unfortunately the very volume and speed can give a false sense of security. The more you apply for, the better your chances?
Not really. There is an unseen pressure in responding to the vacanicies quickly. Little thought goes into the application and it’s all too easy to fall into the habit of sending off a standard CV and covering email. And because it can be done quickly, there is an expectation that the reply will also come quickly, which it doesn’t.
A vacuum forms while the reply is waited for, the vacuum is filled by applying for more and more vacancies without thought of job type or location. The Internet makes it easy to seem to be busy without actually producing any results.
Applying for jobs successfully takes time and discipline. Ration the length of your on-line sessions. Print off the job details and save them until later. Choose the job boards you are looking at carefully. Make sure they include a good range of jobs under the headings of industry, level and location which match your needs. If they allow you to set a up an automatic search which triggers an email to you with results, do so.
Once your on-line time for the day has been used up, look through the printed vacancies. Carefully analyse the requirements. If you match with more than seven out of ten of the job skills needed, it is worth applying.
Start with those jobs where your score is highest. Check through your CV to make sure the information matching to the company’s needs is the best possible.
If there’s an application form to complete, download it and print it out. Take your time completing it, again you’re looking to demonstrate, in your submission, the best match within your skills and experience.
Draft a covering letter setting out three or more reasons why you should be chosen for interview. Address this to a person, use the phone to find out who.
Finish all the applications and take a break. Check each one of them over for spelling and typing errors, making sure you’re telling the best story about yourself, before going back on-line to upload the information.
Where a postal address is given, it can’t harm your chances to send a high quality print out of your application presentation by first class post that day.