The Art of an Effective Job Search

A job search can be a daunting task. While there are a few people out there who can send out 1 or 2 resumes and expect to get a call back from an employer, for most of us a job search is a numbers game. I advise my clients that if they apply to 10 jobs and get 1 response from an employer, then their resume is effectively doing it’s job. So even if you have an effective resume, you are setting your self up for failure 90% of the time each time you apply to a job. Here are a few tips to keep your spirits up when looking for a job:


  1. Meet with an employment counsellor to get advice on writing an effective resume – they will help you build and format your resume in order to make it more noticeable to employers.


  1. Create cover letter – not all employers will read it but it goes a long way to making your application look more professional. A well written cover letter can really show that you are interested in the job and that you have thought about how you are a good match.


  1. Treat your job search as though it is a job itself. If you are looking for a full time, you should be putting in 40 hours per week into your job search. Making a schedule and day planner can really help you organize your time.


  1. Create goals for yourself – A job search can be really demoralizing. In order to be successful, you will likely have to go through a lot of rejection first. If it takes a little while for you to get that job offer, you might begin to feel as though you are not making any progress. By setting up daily or weekly goals can go a long way to keep your spirits up.


  1. Keep up the forward momentum – For most people, a job search is a numbers game. Even an effective resume will only get you a positive response from an employer 10 percent of the time. That means you will need to apply to 10 jobs if you expect to hear back from 1 employer for an interview. It’s not a good strategy to apply for 1 or 2 jobs and then wait to hear back from the employer before applying to other jobs. If you can, I recommend committing to applying to 20-25 jobs per week. If feel that this number allows for a good volume: quality ratio.


  1. Always customize your resume and cover letter – You always want to customize your resume and cover letter to the job you are applying to. 30 minutes to an hour to do this for most jobs is a good amount of time to make sure you are addressing the job requirements as set out by the employer.


  1. Apply for a Job and then Move On! – There is a temptation to linger and think about jobs you have applied to. There really isn’t any point in trying to guess when and if and how an employer will get back to you. My advice is once you apply for a job, forget about it and move your focus and energy into the next job you are going to apply to.


  1. Keep Track of the Jobs you Apply to – A job search log is a great way to do this and a great to refer back to when employers start calling you back for interviews.



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