Try these tips to help increase your chances of finding opportunities
Finding your first job in a new field can be tricky, especially if employers are looking for people with experience. It may take some patience to get started in your new field. But with some perseverance and a strategic approach to your job search, you will get there! Try these tips to get started.
Tip #1: Make an appointment with Career Services
For students or graduates of career training schools and colleges, you should take advantage of your career development advisors. They are trained to help you learn the latest job searching strategies. They provide mock interviews, resume review, and job search tips. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. That’s why they are there!
Tip #2: Start developing a network
Even though you are new to your field, you may have more of a career network than you realize. Start thinking about everyone you know and how they might be able to connect you to your new career field. Tips for networking:
- Create a LinkedIn profile and make connections with classmates and mentors. Over time, you can slowly grow your connections as you meet new people in your field.
- Join LinkedIn groups to learn more about your career field.
- If you had an internship or externship, keep in touch with the people you met during that experience, and periodically ask if job openings have come up.
- Talk with friends, relatives, and acquaintances about your job search. Usually people want to help and would be happy to connect you with opportunities.
- Attend networking events.
- Volunteer at an organization in your new career field.
- Try to get an informational interview with someone in your field.
Tip #3. Improve your online job search
Searching for a job online can be a frustrating experience, especially when you receive rejection letters or you don’t hear anything at all. A rule of thumb is that you should spend only 10% of your entire job search efforts online. The other 90% should be spent networking and trying to get job leads and referrals from people you know. To make your online time more efficient, follow this advice:
- If you are not qualified, don’t apply. With so much competition online, your resume will probably be overlooked if you do not meet the specified qualifications. Instead, spend that time applying for a job that you are qualified for.
- Don’t narrow your options too much. We all want the perfect job, but sometimes that is simply not possible. You may have to travel farther than you had hoped, take slightly less in pay than you had hoped, or take a different kind of job than you had hoped. Rather than closing your mind to these possibilities, consider how they might work for you.
- Sign up for email alerts. Most job aggregator websites have an email alert system where you can enter in your parameters for your job search. Once you set up an account, the site will email you whenever new jobs come up.
- Check company websites. Instead of always relying on CareerBuilder or LinkedIn job postings, go to the websites of a few employers where you would hope to work. Their “career” section may list job openings that didn’t show up on your LinkedIn search. This can be a more targeted way to look for a job.
Tip #4. Make your resume more computer-friendly
Most companies that list their jobs on the large job aggregators like Monster and Indeed also have online job application systems. Because they get so many resumes, they usually use an applicant tracker system to scan and screen the resumes. You don’t want your resume to trip up the system. Make sure you create a resume that the computer scanning system can read:
- Use a simple font like Arial, Cambria, or Times New Roman
- Avoid any fancy formatting like bullets, borders, logos, and images. Separate the sections of your resume with simple symbols like a row of hyphens or equals signs.
- Submit your resume in the format that is requested. If no format is requested, submit it as a text file to be safe.
- Use industry keywords and key phrases in your resume. Read the job ad carefully, and try to use the same terminology in your resume.
We hope these tips help you formulate a job search strategy that ends in success! Remember, a job search can be frustrating, but the most important thing to remember is: don’t give up! Try to use all the resources at your disposal and take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way. It may be hard work, but it will be worth the effort you put into it.
The Salter School is a career-focused training school that prepares students for careers in the fields of medical assisting, medical billing and coding (health claims specialist), and massage therapy. Contact us online for more information about how to enroll.