You have to make a job out of getting a job, in other words: It's not just a matter of applying for one job and waiting, or even applying for lots of jobs with the same approach. Getting the job you want is a full time project. It helps if you can plan out the key steps. Here are 8 steps that should help you:
1. Research your target employer and the job role. The more you know about them, the better your chances of winning.
2. Make recruitment agents your competitive advantage. Explain you will prepare well for any interviews as this will raise their chance of earning commission by placing you into a job! Find out which companies they place a lot of people into, as this could be an easier way into your next job. Ask them (or an employer's human resources department) which process they will use to decide who gets the job. Who will be interviewing you, when and what should you prepare? What are the top 3 most important qualities that the interviewer will be looking for?
3. Find out the key requirements: Each time you apply for a job you should find out the key job requirements and make sure you put 3 aspects of your experience that match the job at the top of the first page. What can you refer to in your education, interests, social life or sporting achievements that show you have the qualities that the role requires? Are you able to provide references from people who know you and your capabilities? Do you have any specialist knowledge in areas the job requires, perhaps from holiday jobs or voluntary work?
4. Always put a covering email or letter with your CV. State clearly your interest in the job and one or two reasons why you are suitable for the job. Don't just use the same generalised content every time as it is likely to be ignored!
5. Follow up by phone no more than 3 days after mailing the application.Get through to the person handling the application and ask if it's convenient for the person to speak - people can be busy - if it's not convenient fix a time to call back. When you can speak to the person handling the applications, ask if your application arrived ok, stress your interest in the job and ask what the process will be and when interviews will be held.
6. At the right time, ask for an interview. It's just a question - ask in a friendly positive voice stating that it's really important to you as your research about the organisation makes you really interested in the job. You have a right to ask and they have a right to say yes or no, but if you don't ask you don't get! As soon as you get an interview agreed, find out who you will be interviewed by and what they will be looking for.
7. Preparation: Take time before the interview, think about all the possible questions you could get asked and the answers. Try out the question and answer session with a friend to see how it feels to answer tough questions. Think about, and note down, a few questions you can ask that demonstrate real interest in the job and the organisation.
8. Follow up and time management: Use some kind of a calendar or diary to track your activities in the search for a job. After an interview, not more than 48 hours, send a thank you email to the interviewer and as well as thanking them for their time repeating your interest in the job and re-confirming two or three reasons why you fit the job. In your diary, record who you spoke to, what they said and when to call back or when to expect the next step. With several job applications going on at the same time, it's easy to forget calling someone back or providing a reference by a certain date.
Finally, when you do start your new job make sure you have a plan for early success, try our course Work to help you. LET'S-BEGIN courses are built on a unique range of working experiences from over 30 years in job roles that required very strong inter-personal skills in sales, sales management, general management and organisational leadership.