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Must-Do's for Every Job Search by Stephen Van Vreede

Many job seekers are overwhelmed by the amount of options that are out there today. In an effort to navigate through all the muck and mire, I have put together a list of three of the most effective tools that job seekers should keep in their arsenal.

1. Job Seekers Must Have a Job Search Strategy. I don't think I could ever emphasize this enough. In fact, I believe in the necessity of it so much that I have devoted countless hours to blogging, writing articles, and giving presentations on the subject.

After personally working with about 600 job seekers each year, it stands out to me as the number one problem that most candidates have. They invest in the resume. They spend hours and hours combing the Internet for resources, advice, and assistance. They hook up with recruiters and headhunters galore. But when you ask them how much time they are devoting each week, where they are spending the bulk of their time, the number of resumes they are getting out per week, and how much time they expect their search to take, they can only give you a blank stare.

I know that taking the time to sit down and put together a strategy is not as sexy as shelling out hundreds of dollars on the resume or uploading said resume onto some website, but it is important.

The reason it is so important is because basic time/resource management is vital to any search. Both full-time and part-time job seekers need a plan. Nothing so rigid that you can't be flexible, of course, but you generally need to know how to spend your time wisely. Without it, you will waste more than you should, and you will have a difficult time setting proper expectations.

So whatever you do, take some time and develop a strong strategy that will help guide you along the way.

2. Job Seekers Must Use the Internet More for Research/Networking and Less for Online Posting. How many times have we said, "What did we do before we had the Internet?" It is true that the Internet has revolutionized our lives. Need a recipe? Need to resolve some trivia dispute between you and your spouse? You can have an answer in an instant. And for many job seekers, they want the Internet to be the quick answer to their job search woes.

Nevertheless, statistic after statistic continues to show that online job posting sites are one of the most ineffective methods for finding a job (4 percent on a good day)! Yet, when you ask most job seekers where they hang their hat for their job search, they will tell you that they have "posted" for many jobs on the Internet and are expecting to hear something any day now. (That's probably why new sites keep popping up daily. They don't need to be effective. They just need to show job postings!)

There is no doubt that the Internet is a great research tool. You can research companies, hear about potential openings, link up with old colleagues, and find valuable resources like recruiters. But when it comes down to it, the old methods still are the best: networking, networking, networking. And the more face to face, the better!

3. Job Seekers Must Look for Group Job Hunting Opportunities. Here is a best kept secret if I ever saw one. Group job hunting has an 84 percent effectiveness rate. When you compare that with a 4 percent effectiveness rate for online job posting sites, it is hard to believe that more groups aren't popping up. Job seekers putting their "noddles" (aka heads) together is one of the most powerful tools a candidate can ask for.

Here's a snippet of how it can work when managed well: Candidate A meets Candidate B. They start talking about their job search woes. Candidate A happens to have a colleague who also specializes in Candidate B's field. She tells Candidate B that she will set up a lunch date for the three of them to get together. In the meantime, Candidate B happens to know of an opportunity she heard about through a recruiter that Candidate A might be interested in.

Now take that scenario and place into a group setting, where you can have 5, 10, or 20 people all sharing ideas, resources, and contacts. It can be quite a powerful tool when managed correctly.


My company is called No Stone Unturned, and I am an MBA and certified professional resume writer (CPRW). I have been a career consultant since 2002 with an additional eight years of corporate hiring experience. You can check out my website that offers tools such as the [sites.nononsensejobsearch.com No existing site found.].

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