Here's some good news for the New Year: the job market is heating up as the economy slowly improves. Now is the time for job hunters to brush up on their skills as many people still find themselves out of work and searching for new jobs, or currently employed and passively seeking better opportunities.
Randstad offers these seven tips for a successful job search in 2013.
Tip #1: Tis’ the season to network
The holiday season presents lots of networking opportunities, like home parties, office gatherings and charitable events. These are prime chances to socialize with existing contacts and establish new connections in a relaxed atmosphere. These events may not be the best time to bring up career goals and aspirations, but they can open the door for follow-up conversations. Network with a mentor or former colleague and make plans to catch up after the New Year.
Tip #2: Seek Temporary Or Contract Positions
According to the Randstad Workforce 360 Study, 67 percent of companies are currently using contingent workers in some capacity and most say that contingent workers comprise a steady or increasing percentage of their overall employee populations. The same study found that temporary and contract employees also have higher job satisfaction (86%) compared to permanent workers (73%). Most importantly, get your foot in the door! Once you’re in, make yourself indispensable and they won’t want to lose you.
Tip #3: Go Where the Jobs Are
When you’re on the job hunt, find out what are the fastest-growing careers in your target industry. For instance, if you want to work in technology, it’s helpful to know that IT spending is expected to exceed $2 trillion in 2013, according to the research firm IDC.
Tip #4: Tap Into Who You Already Know
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are currently 12.1 million people who are unemployed and only 3.6 million vacant positions in the United States. Most applicants rely on job boards, which means hundreds of people will apply to the same post. Instead, utilize the connections you already have in place. If you want to work at a specific company, dig into your own personal network and find out if you are already linked to that potential job through your second or third degree connections.
Tip #5: Call A Recruiter
Finding a job is no easy task – so why not have a recruiter working alongside you? . Recruiters coach, prep and encourage you through the entire hiring process. They also have access to many jobs that aren’t even posted on job boards or company websites because oftentimes, employers turn to recruiters in order to fill jobs. Working with a recruiter also means you gain access to their connections to HR and hiring managers, as well as inside knowledge of the company, such as the company’s culture and other crucial information not listed online.
Tip #6: Clean Up Your Online Presence
Many employers vet potential candidates with a social media profile review – so make sure your online presence is in order. Be sure to update or create a profile on LinkedIn, the online, searchable version of your résumé. Most recruiters use LinkedIn to search for and reach out to potential candidates. The platform also provides employers with more information than a résumé and allows them to view recommendations and possible shared connections.
Tip #7: Proofread All Your Materials
Don’t be a qualified candidate that was overlooked due to a spelling or grammatical error in your cover letter or résumé. Many hiring managers will automatically toss out any résumé that has typos. Avoid these mistakes by proofreading all your materials, then have someone else look it over to before sending it out.