Kick Your Job Search into High Gear

If you are like many people, then performing a job search can start to wear on you very quickly. In my own job searches, I became fatigued after about 3 weeks—I would apply to job ads online incessantly, and then become disheartened when I didn’t hear anything. Struggling to land even an interview can be very discouraging, and can lead to you ceasing to apply altogether.

Rather than letting your job search get bogged down, try the steps I’ve included below. Sometimes, to land that interview and find your next opportunity, you just have to change the way you do things to get more leverage out of your search.

  1. Customize your documents. Exhausting though it may sound, customizing your resume and cover letter for each position will result in a higher turnaround rate. Having the words and phrases used in the job ad or description will get you through any potential Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) faster. Additionally, hiring managers will be more interested in interviewing you because you took the time to customize your skill descriptions. It might be more work on the front end, but customized documents will mean fewer applications overall.
  2. Focus on a position. I have worked with many individuals who want to aim for multiple different positions at once. Although this might seem sensible upon first glance—a higher chance of something landing—what it actually does is make your career search less focused. Your LinkedIn profile will have to struggle to include all of your different targets rather than presenting you as an “insider” to the position you’re aiming for. You can certainly try applying to different kinds of positions; just do it one at a time.
  3. Go beyond “applying”. My biggest mistake in previous job searches was applying to many, many positions on job boards, and then sitting and twiddling my thumbs while I waited to be contacted. Many of these job listings are flooded with applicants, and many other positions go completely unlisted. Job listings are expensive and time consuming, so companies will often choose not to post a job publicly. In order for you to get in on these opportunities, you need to go beyond just applying. Start networking with industry insiders in your area. Reach out to check in on your application materials. Start conversations about how you can be a resource for a company. Make yourself visible to companies, rather than hiding behind a resume you submit and then never follow up on.

In the end, a lot of job searching is making sure you are communicating with your network regularly and effectively. Many jobs get filled through networking, through knowing the right people at the right time, so make sure you are communicating regularly and well. And keep your chin up—if I could find a job doing a job search badly, you can certainly find one doing it well!

If you are thinking of making a career change, consider emailing us at We offer free initial consultations, and have helped hundreds of job seekers make successful transitions into new opportunities.

By: Julia Pillard, Career Solutions Group