Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

Tips for Your 2012 Job Search

It’s a new year and with it should come a new way of going about your job search. If you are still unemployed and looking for work, the new year can bring in a huge gust of energy and motivation. At the same time, a new set of tips and job search advice are great tools to have as you ride your new job search wave into the new year. Take a look at the following tips and be fully prepared and ready for your 2012 job search.

Take Your Time
Spark News has thrown this tip at you so many times, and we’re going to do it again because it is that useful. As you search for potential jobs, take your time and look for positions you truly want, can see yourself having and are adequately qualified for. There is nothing recruiters and employers hate more than spending time looking over the application of someone who is no where near qualified for the job. You’re not just wasting their time, but you’re wasting your own too. Applying for jobs is a full-time job in its own. Why waste any of your precious time applying for a job you’ll never get? If you are fully qualified for the job, make sure to tailor your CV and resume to show that you are. Generic resumes likely won’t show employers that you are qualified for the position. Taking your time, researching and finally applying for position will fare much better for you than simply sending your resume to hundreds of outlets hoping one of them will call you back. Take your time.

Figure Out What Your Goals Are
The immediate answer to what the goal of your job search is clear for everyone: the bills need to be paid, food needs to be put on the table. You need money. Of course, everyone needs a paycheck but ask yourself if that is all you want out of your job. Easily you will find that you probably want more from your job than money. Do you want a job that makes you feel good because you are helping others? Do you want a job that allows you to freely express your creativity? If you know what you really want out of your job, then it is much easier to search, and eventually find, it. At the same time, if you fully know what you want then you will likely be better at selling yourself to employers. Being sure of what you want and knowing what skills you have that can take you there will make it much easier for you to market yourself.

Skills
Speaking of skills, you should take a look at the skills list on your resume. Are they out dated and a bit rusty? If so, take an online course or a course at a community college and brush up on the new skills of the market. It may be at a cost to you, but continuing your education in any way shows employers that you want to stay up-to-date and truly want to put your best you forward. Plus, the extra skills might be just what you need to snag the job you want.

Be Prepared
You should always be prepared to go on interview with an employer- be it in person or over the phone. When you apply for jobs, you never know when the employer will get to your application. It could be in a couple days, a week or even a month. In any case, no matter when they contact you, you should be ready to answer any questions they may have and to discuss the position. This may be increasingly difficult as the number of jobs you apply for rises over time. I find that the easiest way to keep track of this is with a chart or a list. Each time you apply to a job, jot it down or add it to your chart with the name of the business and a brief description of the position available. Write down what documents you sent to them and make sure you have a copy of the email or application you sent. That way, if they call you back you can reference your chart or list and be prepared to answer any questions they have for you about the position. Without a list, you may get a callback and when they start asking you questions it may take you a while to remember what the position even was and what the business entails. That takes time away from your conversation with the employer-time that could be used convincing them you are perfect for the role-and shows that you are not prepared and ready for them. Being prepared and organized is always a smart idea.

Stay Positive
Doubtless your job search has taken a toll on your self-confidence and happiness at times. The job market is tough right now and rejection seems to come from all sides. Don’t let it get you down, though. Realize that everyone is having a tough time and those that dwell on rejection will likely never see success. Don’t give up on your job search and don’t give up hope that the right job for you is out there. It is. You just may not be looking in the right places or using the right tool set to find it. Keeping a positive attitude about your job search will keep you in high spirits and others will be more apt to help you out with whatever you may need.

Finding a job is hard work and can take a lot out of you. As stated earlier, it is in itself a full-time job. Make sure you don’t burn yourself out or stress yourself out. It make take longer than you anticipated, but the right job is out there somewhere and perhaps using these tools will move you closer and closer toward it each day.

IMAGE: Courtesy of Tree Hugger

Nicole Nicholson

Nicole is the Content Editor for Spark Hire and mainly writes for and edits the work for the Spark News blog. She graduated in 2010 with a BA in Journalism from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois. She has a passion for writing, editing, and pretty much anything to do with content. In her free time she frequents the Chicago music scene and writes reviews on shows for her own personal blog. Connect with Nicole and Spark Hire on Facebook and Twitter