Looking for a job is not all straightforward and can be overwhelming. Finding the perfect job is in another job-hunting league of its own. Some would say it’s a unicorn, in fact. However, if you break it down it should get easier by time and help you rule out sending applications to jobs you are not really interested in pursuing. Below we discuss ways to get you as close to that perfect job as possible.
First, understand your strengths
Think about what you are proficient and skilled in. Get a notepad and jot down what comes to mind. Think of your qualifications and what you excel in. Consider what other people ask you for help in as this will bring out your skills. When it comes to skills, don’t simply think of qualifications, “soft” skills are important too. Are you good with people? Are you a natural leader? Do you love working in a team? This will help you identify your passions and what your strengths are.
What do you want in a job?
Remember, that you’re going to spend most of your day at work. Whilst “work is work”, it needs to be something you value doing. Will you mind sitting at a desk all day? Are you the type who needs people around and would prefer running around instead? Do you like an office environment or do you prefer doing something more creative? Even something as small as whether you need to wear a uniform or not is something to consider. A job at a bank might not be for you if you like to dress creatively and don’t like sitting at a desk all day. Would you prefer shift basis or regular working hours? Consider all these things as they will help you understand what you’re looking for in a job.
Research, research, research
Look up job boards and advertised jobs and read through descriptions. If there is something which peaks your interest, check the skills required, what is required from you on the job and any required qualifications. Identify what you like and like less from a job description. Eventually, this will paint a better picture of your perfect dream job. Part and parcel with job hunting are salary trends. What salary are you expecting from your role and what salaries are common for the roles you are interested in? If the answers are not out there, ask around. You can also find professionals in the field you are interested in and ask them. This holds true especially if you’re thinking of changing your career direction.
Identify what’s important to you
This is different to each individual. Whilst some may favour benefits such as a ping-pong table or free lunches, others would rather have health insurance or flexibility. Of course, compensation is often important to many but other things to consider are whether the company values align with your own, if you believe in the company mission and if its an industry you care for. Segment your list into “must-haves”, “nice to have” and “not important”. Go through each job description and highlight pros and cons as you go along. You may also find out more about the role during the interview. Remember that at the interview you are not the only one being interviewed. The interview is an opportunity for you to find out more about the role and the company itself.
Use different job searches
Organisations may have different job titles which could signify the same thing (such as Officer vs Executive). Searching for alternate job titles will help you make sure you find all available opportunities. Be smart with your searches. Searching for ‘Administrative’, ‘Admin’ or even ‘Administration’ would help find different results which may have varying titles. Being too specific with your search will likely give you far less (or no) results. As you search, notice keywords that are used in the roles that appeal most to you and use them in your next search. Keepmeposted also has a filter by basis option which will help you filter out any options which do not suit your need.
Think about companies you’d love to work with and ask yourself why – is it the perks, the industry itself or the company mission? Find similar companies that align with this and share similar traits. You can then check out their careers page (if they have one), their website or social media channels for jobs they have listed. Check if you meet the requirements and apply.
Bonus: Follow up
Finally, make sure to follow up once you’ve applied and keep yourself updated with the company’s social media updates and current news. Showing you’re knowledgeable about the organisation and what it does will score you some points at the interview!
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