3 Quick Tips for Job Searching in a Weak Employment Market

Is the current job market keeping you from looking for work?  If so, here are a few tips to keep in mind.

  1. Don’t postpone a job search. Postponing a job search does not give you an advantage in your hunt for that perfect job.  In fact, it just creates longer gaps in employment.  According to a 2009 focus group study I conducted along with Francine M. Bates, Human Resource professionals in NJ describe gaps in employment as negatively affecting a job candidate’s application.  In other words, continue to keep abreast of your field’s job openings and apply for positions that interest you.  You may not get something immediately, but you have a better chance of finding a job if you are continuing to look for one!
  2. Use your creativity.  Be creative in your job search.  For example, think of new ways to identify job leads. Ones that don’t involve just looking online or in the newspapers.  Network with people in your field.  Are there professional associations or other business related groups that you can link up with to meet people who might have job leads?  Does your local library have any job related support groups or other opportunities to meet new people?  How about job related groups held at the local One Stop Center? Find your local center by following this link: http://lwd.dol.state.nj.us/labor/wnjpin/findjob/onestop/services.html. Explore as many options as possible. This will not only increase your job related network, but may also be a fun way to meet new and interesting people! 
  3. Remain calm, cool, and collected. Easier said than done, right? Well, as much as possible, try to maintain a sense of confidence and positivity. When the right job lead comes along, you want the employer to see you as a confident and composed individual.  A person who is not easily shaken by the negative things in life, but one who looks forward to the future with optimism and confidence!   How do we stay cool under pressure?  Consider taking up yoga, art, or other relaxing activity.  Find something that interests and de-stresses you.  Look into the adult classes held at your local community college and/or vocational technical school.  In addition to the emotional and physical benefits, these classes are great ways to network with people—who knows, they may know of a job opening!

 These are just a few tips to enhance your job search during a period of high unemployment.  Yes, these tips are common and not terribly complicated. However, we all need reminders at times and encouragement to keep moving forward.  If you have any tips you have used that have been helpful in your job search, please let our blog community know.  We would love to hear what has worked for you! 

7 responses to “3 Quick Tips for Job Searching in a Weak Employment Market

  1. Job seekers can also attend workshops, certificate programs to learn new skills while looking for a job. A few new “tricks” may boost the chance of getting a job. Employers like individuals who are self motivated to learn.

  2. Yes, great point! These activities also present great opportunities for networking.

  3. Another great tip is staying prepared. Staying prepared can be something as simple as maintaining your resume updated. Also, preparation involves practicing/role-playing for an interview so you are ready to answer tough questions like: where do you see yourself in five years?; I see an employment gap on your resume, can you explain?; What can you bring to this position? Being prepared is helpful because when the right job lead comes along you want to be ready to walk into the interview with confidence, less nervousness and land the job. One more thing, being prepared can even include setting aside the outfit you will use when you get an interview. Not only is this preparation, but it can be a good motivation to see that outfit ready to go.

  4. Yes, staying prepared and engaged in the job search is a great tip. Role playing difficult interview questions beforehand will give you the confidence necessary to come across professionally and “polished” to a potential employer. I love the visualization of seeing oneself composed, confident, dressed and ready for an interview. These positive images have a profound and immediate effect on our self image.

  5. I love these tips! They offer great advice for individuals who may be discouraged while searching for a job. Particularly, the second tip about networking with other professionals is an awesome way to get new information you would not otherwise find on the internet. Attending job related groups, like you stated can not only broaden your options, but also be a great way to meet new people! Good stuff.

  6. Networking is also helpful because many employers receive dozens of resume’s and applications a day so it is important to stand out; and by knowing someone in your field of choice who knows your capabilities is a great thing. Another tip that could be useful, is volunteering at a location that you are interested in working. If the job that you have your eyes set on does not have a position currently open, there is no harm in asking if they need any volunteers or helpers. This can help get your foot into the door.

  7. I agree with all three tips. For the first tip “Don’t postpone a job search,” is very helpful, as mentioned before waiting after graduating from college will make it more competitive to get a job. Starting 3-5 months prior from a student’s graduation date can be very helpful because you can start sending or fixing your resume, researching jobs positions, and completing jobs applications. And it is easier to write on the resume the expected graduation date, which can help the employer understand your availability.
    For the second tip, ” Use your creativity”, is a huge opportunity to network with prior internship supervisors, graduated students and looking at different agencies. Knowing someone who is already in the field won’t get you the job but it can help in two ways, first you can be notified when there will be a job opening and be the first one to apply. Second, having a current employer speak about you directly to the supervisor of the company can help a lot.
    For the last tip, “ Remain calm, cool and collected,” is very important. Having a positive attitude will bring out positive outcomes. As new college graduates, everyone is very eager to find a job and it can be very stressful if you do not receive any job offers right away. Almost every student has loans to pay back within six months of graduation, which it is not a long time. It also effects your self-esteem because having a degree is supposed to bring out bigger opportunities compared to those who do not have one.
    One tip I would add on to this would be having an excel sheets that shows all the jobs you are applying for. An excel sheet can help you organize what company, the date applied, website URL, and whether they have given you an interview or a rejection letter. Having that information on a paper will be easy to access, if you receive a call from a job, you can always look back at the website to further understand the job if they ask other questions.

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