Best ways to job hunt
Four of the best ways to hunt for a job
These job hunting techniques offer the best results, according to the late Richard Bolles, a career expert and the author of “What Color is My Parachute.”
- Ask for job leads from family members, friends, and people in the community. Ask them if they might know somebody who knows somebody who works in a company that you’re interested in or might work in a place that has the type of job you’d like to do. Your contacts are key, and it’s critical that you harvest them. And your next job is likely to come from someone you know or a person someone you know knows! You can get ideas about how to build your network by using this Networking Checklist. This method has a 33% success rate, according to Bolles.
- Knock on the door of any employer, factory, or office that interests you, whether they are known to have a vacancy or not. Talk to the hiring manager, the manager of the department you’re interested in working in, and avoid the human resource department. Tell the hiring manager about your skills, and ask for their advice. If you make a good enough impression in the hiring manager’s opinion, you’ll have an inside track, creating a job for yourself. Or, who knows, they might even create a job for you. The odds are small that this will happen, however, so you have to visit as many companies as possible. It’s a numbers game. This has a 47% success rate.
- Use American Job Center’s Employer Locator to find companies that might have jobs that match your interests. Make a list of 100 employers and call at least 10 per day. Speak with the hiring managers of the departments you’re interested in about the qualities you possess that would be applicable for the type of position you can do and do well. (And don’t forget to pursue companies that have 20 or fewer employees, since they offer two-thirds of all new jobs.) This has a 69% success rate. Once a job is posted/advertised there is much more competition. Career expert Marty Nemko states that cold calling and creating your own leads, “except for the highest level positions, is the most potent strategy.”
- Job hunt buddy or job-club. Team up with someone else who is looking for a job or create your own job-hunting club with other job hunters. Hang out with positive people. Share ideas, provide emotional support to one another, talk by phone and even meet one or more times each week. This has a 70% success rate.
Online job boards
Although your focus should be primarily on contacting employers by making phone calls, getting referrals, sending e-mails and knocking on doors, you can also search online job boards for openings. According to Richard Bolles, statistics change over time but past studies have shown that using the Internet results in a job for 10 out of 100 job hunters who try it. The other 90 have to turn elsewhere. He calls it the 10% solution. Therefore, it deserves 10% of every job hunter’s time.
These web sites search for all job listings on the Internet—from a variety of sources, including corporate websites—so you don’t have to visit each job-board one by one:
- Indeed.com Searches job sites, newspapers, associations and company career pages.
- Simplyhired.com Searches job sites and company career pages.
Other sites you should check out:
- Craigslist.org Regional community board, a favorite of many employers.
- Careerbuilder.com One of the most popular job search engines.
- Monster.com The first major job site and still used by many jobseekers.
- Honest Jobs This job search engine was created specifically to help job seekers who have been previously incarcerated find work.
Temporary employment agencies can be a good option, too. Some short-term assignments at temp agencies can turn into full-time job offers. Many employers like the temp-to-hire model, since they can see what kind of workers people are before hiring them. Temp agencies place everything from factory assemblers and warehouse workers to administrative assistants and accountants.