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Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Article written by Angela Betts

What Do You Need to Do to Prepare for Your Job Search?

The New Year is now in full swing. Is a new job on your list of resolutions? Have you given any thought to your job search? What do you need to do to prepare for an effective job search? What type of position is on the next rung of your career ladder? Do you know what qualifications will be expected in most cases for the job?

First of all, you need to know exactly what you are looking for in a job. Next you will want to review the qualifications for the job and make a list of your own qualifications. Do you have what it takes? Most important, what have you accomplished for your present and past employers that will impress a potential new employer? Keep this list handy because it will be needed to write your resume if it isnít already up-to-date.

Here is a list of five aspects of job searching which need thorough review and planning in addition to an up-to-date resume before you take off from the starting line.
  • 1. Do your qualifications meet the requirements of the job or position you have in mind? If not, what will it take to acquire the qualifications you don't already possess? Do you need to register for classes at your local college or maybe attend a seminar or two to add to your continuing education credits? Earning a degree isnít always the finish line of your education. Many professions require continuous education in order to stay abreast of the latest skills and knowledge in a given field.

  • 2. Have you prepared your USP or unique selling point? You will be marketing yourself at networking and social events so have your USP prepared. Remember to project a confident, positive attitude when you are asked the inevitable question, ďWhat do you do?Ē So what if you have been laid off. You ARE still skilled and knowledgeable in a particular field and/or profession. Let it be known with your own unique selling point.

  • 3. Have you practiced answering the questions you expect to be asked in an interview? Do your research to learn the many types of questions interviewers ask to determine if a candidate will be the right fit for their company. Donít answer the questions with answers you believe the interviewer will want to hear. Give some thought to your own values and views and answer accordingly. This way you will also be interviewing the company and be better able to determine whether or not a particular company is also a good fit for your values.

  • 4. What salary are you striving for or expecting? Determine what you believe your expertise is worth to an employer. Be fair to yourself and to potential employers. If you arenít sure what salary range to aim for, do your research using salary calculators online. Prepare your response to job postings that state a salary history is required with resume submission. This issue is best addressed with a salary range stated in your cover letter rather than a list stating the salary you received from previous employers. The range informs the potential employer how much you value your skills and knowledge without cornering you into the same low pay you may have received in a previous job.

  • 5. Are your references aware you are planning to include them on your reference list? Call your references and make certain they are agreeable to being listed on your reference list. Give them an idea of the direction you are heading with your job search so they will have time to think about how they will respond if contacted. Receiving a call out of the blue could spring too much surprise on your references and the caller will hear it in their voice. That would not be a good thing. Donít take the chance.
Preparing yourself will boost your level of confidence and alleviate some of the stress associated with a job search. A confident person communicates more effectively with contacts which increases their odds for the position desired. Research, plan, and practice your job search or career management strategy. You will be assured you are doing all you possibly can to move ahead.
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