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5 Job Search Resolutions to Start the New Year Right

Posted by Rob Riggins

The season of giving may have come to a close but there’s still one more gift to give—a commitment to your cleared career. Reflect, refresh, and set your sights on your future job search successes. We’re not going to guilt you into making promises you can’t keep, so let’s keep our list of resolutions to five manageable items that will help your search in 2020.

1. Review your marketing materials. Take a truly critical eye to the resume and cover letter you use as your template. Are there any updates you need to make to your cleared resume based on achievements made in the past year? Make those revisions and ask others for their opinion too. Any time you talk to a Recruiter or Hiring Manager, ask for feedback on your resume, whether you’re in an interview or in a less formal setting. As for cover letters, do you even use them anymore? Many recruiters have lost interest in cover letters because they’re essentially all the same. But you cannot skip them if a job posting asks for one, and hiring managers do like them if they actually have something to say.

2. Take another look at the companies you’re targeting. Challenge your strategies with some honest questions, and open your mind to other possibilities. Do your target companies still make sense for you? Do you need to broaden your job search? If you’re only considering big contractors because you think it’s a good fit for you and your ambitions, how about considering a rapidly growing mid-size company? If you’re only considering smaller contractors, what about a contract that gives you that small feel in a big package?

3. Take stock of the information you have posted online. Have you registered on a variety of job boards or company web sites? When is the last time you updated your information or logged in? You need to revisit job board and company web sites at least once per month. That updates the date associated with your account and puts you at the top of recruiters’ searches. What about your social media profiles? Are they up-to-date and reflective of the professional image you wish to portray? Brush up on our top tips to effectively use social networking for job search and career development.

4. Touch base with your references and others in your network. If you haven’t talked to your references in a couple months, you’re overdue for a status update and to see if there is anything you can do for them. Just as with your networking contacts, you need to be in regular communication with your references to keep them informed of your progress. Your job search is your priority, but rarely the priority of your network or your references, so it’s important to stay top-of-mind. If you’re still looking for potential references or you feel afraid to ask the right person, use these tips to help you ask someone to be a reference.

5. Prepare for all your interviews in 2020. Think of the word interview much more broadly than you probably have in the past. Any discussion you have with a potential employer is an interview, whether it’s chatting with a recruiter by the coffee station at a job fair, a phone conversation during a phone-screen interview, or a casual encounter with a potential hiring manager at a conference or professional event. Are you preparing for these opportunistic encounters by having your success stories and your elevator pitch well polished?

With the holidays wrapping up, it’s time to change gears and really focus on your job search. So as you look to 2020, do something more for your cleared career. It takes work, but you’ll be glad you did it.

This entry was posted on Sunday, December 29, 2019 4:52 pm

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