Written by Julie Mazzei, Managing Consultant, VMA GROUP North and Midlands
We all know hunting for a job can be a full time job in itself. So much research and prepping is needed, alongside making time to attend interviews. It can certainly be an emotional rollercoaster, especially if you are currently unemployed and without financial stability. At VMA GROUP, we regularly advise professionals in this situation and can offer the following tips.
1) Firstly, take a breath
It can be very distressing, but if you panic, it can come across as desperate and you will not present yourself at your best or make good long term decisions ...
2) Take stock
What are your strengths and skills? Focus your search on roles that really are the best match, ensuring you can confidently articulate measurable results that positively impacted a business.
3) Cast a wide but measured net
Yes, look at broader roles to cover your bases, but don't apply to everything. Put in a tailored application where you are likely to be selected rather than sending a general blanket out to all without a reason as to why you're a good fit.
4) Invest in a relationship with a good recruiter
You will want to be on the radar for all opportunities, but do your research on agencies to know who is most likely to work on the roles you want. Nurture a relationship with them so they're able to put in an honest and strong recommendation for you. They always know more about a role than if you apply direct, and will also invariably call their “top” candidates first - so you want to be on that list.
5) Keep track of where your CV is sent
If you want recruiters to help you, this one is really important. I cannot tell you how frustrating it is to invest time briefing someone on a role to be told by HR that they already have their CV. No one looks professional and they may be less likely to put you forward in future.
6) Think about interim
You may be set on finding the dream permanent role, but that doesn't stop you from taking a short term contract whilst you are looking. It is money coming in and gives you current experience to talk about at interview which will give you more confidence.
7) Work your network
Let people know you are available and ask them to keep you in mind or recommend you to their contacts.
8) Keep busy
Waiting to hear back from an interview takes patience and often takes longer than the interviewer promises. Distractions are your friend, so keep busy or think about doing some charity work within your field. Keeps your mind active and relevant experience ready.
9) Learn from each experience
It will be disappointing if you hear you were not the successful candidate, but try and get feedback to find out why so that you can learn and improve for each interview. You invested a lot of time in this process so you should take something away from it.
10) Don’t leap into any job
Taking a role when you know it isn’t the right fit will solve the immediate problem, but won't be a long term fix. I am not saying default on a mortgage payment to hold out for your dream role, but still consider the pros and cons of any offer and make an informed decision.
11) And finally ...
Yes, it can be tough going and your emotions will go up and down with each new or lost opportunity. But it will help you narrow down what you want from a new role and hopefully lead to the right match sooner rather than later.
To talk to us about how we can help with your search, please feel free to get in touch.