From partnering with a professional recruiter to identifying your top transferable skills, find out 13 of the most effective job search strategies going into the new year.
- Contact a Professional Recruiter
- Treat Your Job Search Like a Sales Process
- Understand How ATS Filtering Works
- Promote Your Achievements, Not Your Job Description
- Get Clear on Your Best Fit Career Path Before You Apply
- Spend 80% of Your Time Building Relationships
- Find the Decision Makers at Each Target Company
- Have a Team to Support You
- Make Sure Your Networking Strategy Is Intentional
- Elevate from “Job Search” to “Company Search”
- Identify Your Top Transferable Skills
- Delete Your Premade Resume Templates
- Include a Robust Executive Summary Section on Your Resume
Contact a Professional Recruiter
It can be overwhelming beginning a job search, or you may already feel burnt out from looking and interviewing for several weeks. Professional recruiters at staffing agencies like Corporate Job Bank specialize in matching you with potential employers.
Recruiters have access to job openings that may not be publicly advertised, can introduce you to potential employers you may have not considered, and help you get your foot in the door for job opportunities. They provide resume and interview tips, insight into multiple career fields, in addition to negotiating salary – all with just one application.
Our seasoned team of recruiters can simplify the hiring process, guide you on where to focus your energy, and provide career services that make job searching less challenging. We have access to a network of highly rated companies in nearly every industry. The best place to begin your search is with a recruiter at Corporate Job Bank.
Treat Your Job Search Like a Sales Process
Applying to jobs online and hoping to hear back won’t cut it anymore. I recently posted a job on LinkedIn and only one candidate sent me an email. Not a single candidate sent me an audio or video note on LinkedIn.
Consider treating the jobs you apply to as a sales process–you’re selling yourself to the company (the buyer). Find the hiring managers on LinkedIn and send them emails, audio, and video messages to help you stand out from the pack.
Understand How ATS Filtering Works
One of the most common mistakes I see on CVs is poorly matching your skills to the job requirements, with a lack of understanding of what the employer is looking for. This is critical, as employers commonly use Applicant Tracking Systems to filter applications. Even if an ATS is not used, you want the reviewer to pick up the phone and call you immediately.
I encourage you to analyze the job descriptions by circling keywords and then match those to your skill sets. Then, ensure you include those keywords, explaining in context how you built those skills, backed with examples. The benefit of this is you now know what your gaps are that you can address in an interview. Remember, the CV’s job is to get a phone call for an interview.
Promote Your Achievements, Not Your Job Description
Your 2023 career marketing tools—resume, LinkedIn profile, job search letters, and interview responses—should highlight accomplishments. Hiring team members either know your job description or can find it in seconds online; they don’t know what you contributed to the job.
Think in terms of the problems or opportunities your organization asked you to address, the actions you took to address each opportunity, and the results you achieved.
Wow your reader or interviewer by quantifying each achievement and talking about the result first. For example, a client I worked with last week had been given the goal of handling a 100-client caseload. She achieved a 300-client caseload. Her resume and LinkedIn profile describe what she did to exceed her goal.
Hiring managers know a case manager’s job description, but they did not know that my client provided benefits to three times the number of clients she was expected to serve.
Get Clear on Your Best Fit Career Path Before You Apply
A majority of professionals are in a job that is mismatched with their personality, leaving them disengaged at work. You can and should pursue a process of career path exploration or identification, which involves time that is devoted solely to researching, networking, reflecting, and pivoting until you are confidently narrowed in on your ideal role, industry, and work environment.
If you still have options for roles or industries, it means you should do more learning and/or reflection; you should feel clear about which is the topmost fitting role and industry for you and why. This will do wonders to ensure your job search is efficient and effective, lead interesting interviews, and increase your confidence so that you’ll actually enjoy the role once you get there!
Most professionals will only change jobs a few times in their lifetime, so be in a “mode” of exploration and cautiously identify your best fit direction before you move into a “mode” of applying.
Spend 80% of Your Time Building Relationships
About 80% of your job search time should be spent building relationships because you build rapport faster with referrals—so reach out to past colleagues, family, and friends. Tell them what kind of role you’re looking for, your location, and other relevant details.
Part of your networking should be requesting LinkedIn recommendations from past colleagues whom you can also write a recommendation for because recruiters look for this social proof.
Use the other 20% of your time optimizing your resume and LinkedIn profile. And remember, rejections don’t always happen because you interviewed poorly or you’re not qualified. When the job search is an emotional rollercoaster, keep up your morale by remembering that internal factors may be at play, like restructuring, layoffs, or poor internal operations.
Find the Decision Makers at Each Target Company
Over 90% of the job search is marketing—positioning, packaging, messaging and engaging your target audience. One big mistake that many job seekers have done is targeting HR and talent acquisition.
They have no budget and no decision-making authority. You need to be “marketing” yourself to the hiring manager and their peers. And you can find all of them on LinkedIn via filtered searches. Create a persuasive email and send it to 3-5 decision-makers in each company you’re targeting.
Have a Team to Support You
Each of us handles our decisions, our growth, and our career outcomes, and we cannot do it alone. One of the most effective job search strategies for 2023 and beyond is one that is also frequently overlooked across the stages of a career: establishing a hand-selected support team.
This is a group of people whom you trust to advise, guide, challenge, and cheer you on as you navigate your search and other career decisions. I recommend curating your team (think four to eight people) to include a diversity of perspectives, ages, strengths, areas of expertise you need to draw on, and ways that they know you… and then, be a sponge!
Make Sure Your Networking Strategy Is Intentional
Be intentional with your job search strategy as the new year brings about change and having an intentional networking strategy will ensure your job search success. Make a database of your past colleagues and social connections that include friends, family, and neighbors.
Source out where they are employed through conversations or using LinkedIn profiles and company pages. Reach out to connect and update them with your top ten targeted companies and the role you are looking to secure.
While asking for introductions, remember they want to help you connect with their network to help you build forward momentum and create opportunity. Keep them informed of your progress and remember, the next employer is out there looking for you too.
Elevate from “Job Search” to “Company Search”
Build a hit list of companies you’d like to work for, and systematically target each company on your list. Keep on knocking at their door until you find a way in. If all you do is “job search,” if that opportunity doesn’t work out, then you’re done.
But if you elevate your thinking to “company search,” you can pursue multiple opportunities in one organization, keep on showing up, build multiple relationships, and increase your chances of landing in a professional environment where you can plant yourself and grow for the next several years.
Identify Your Top Transferable Skills
Transferable skills will be the name of the game for your job search in 2023. Start by making a list of all your current skills. Using resources such as O*Net by the U.S. Department of Labor can help you put this together. Then put them into two categories:
- Skills that drain you, meaning skills that leave you feeling exhausted after using them all day.
- Skills that energize you, meaning skills that leave you feeling motivated and empowered after using them all day.
Look for positions that allow you to use your energizing skills and focus on communicating them in your job search.
Delete Your Premade Resume Templates
Templates force you to fill in sections with extraneous content and are often filled with icons and fancy fonts that increase the likelihood of your resume being automatically rejected by a sub-par Applicant Tracking System.
Listing keywords like “Project Management” and “WordPress” as skills can mean different things in an interview, so avoid adding lists of confusing keywords, as they are vague and open to misinterpretation.
Instead, prioritize researching and learning how to write your resume in a format that allows it to be easily scanned by an ATS from the left of the page to the right, using a universal font, and maximizing the real estate of the top third of your first page as that will get reviewed first.
This will immediately show the hiring manager you are the type of employee they can count on to put in thoughtful, challenging research and work when needed instead of taking the easy way out.
Include a Robust Executive Summary Section on Your Resume
Cover letters are the voluntary homework that no recruiter is signing up to do. For a busy recruiter, reading a cover letter can be added right to the top of the “Maybe Later” list.
Cover letters can provide us with the accidental forum to mince our words, confuse the recruiter, or exclude ourselves from role eligibility. In the world of cold-applying to roles (not leveraging a member of your network/internal employee at the desired company), you are graded by what’s in your resume.
Focus on building out a more robust “executive summary” section at the top of your resume that addresses your high-level competencies that apply to the position, per the job description. Don’t be scared to drop in 2-3 brief paragraphs with a couple of short sentences, each. Skip the fluff; talk about impact and scale.