It’s a new year and are you looking to start a new job? Or are you currently employed and keeping an eye out for something more interesting? Whether you’re actively looking for a new job or being passively open to new opportunities, it’s important to stay on top of things and present yourself professionally during all phases of your job search.
Why is this important?
Conducting yourself professionally will ensure that employers and recruiters remember you in a positive light so that if you are not hired right now, future opportunities will be available to you.
At the end of the day you’re dealing with people and making their life easier (rather than being the source of frustration) is sure to get you a better response.
During your job search, as in life, treat people with respect and the favour is likely to be returned. Here are other helpful tips to conduct yourself professionally while job searching and making sure recruiters (and employers) come back when timing is right.
Be Organized During Your Job Search
If you’re actively searching for a job, you need to be actively sending out your resume daily. You may be applying to many different positions and eventually it could get hard for you to keep track of them all. That’s why it’s time to get organized during the job searching process.
Create a running document on an excel sheet titled “Jobs Applied To” with different categories such as: date applied, company, project speciality, contact email and make sure to save the job title and descriptions of the positions you’ve applied for.
This will also help in avoiding any awkward situations such as your resume getting to the same employer through you directly AND through a recruiter. You don’t want any confusion around your resume at any point.
Notify Recent References
Plan ahead and get in contact with your recent references to give them a heads up that they might be getting a call from potential employers. Make sure to confirm their phone numbers and email addresses are up-to-date. And of course, remind them about the period of time you worked with them and what job titles you both had. It would be really smart to also let them know what position you’re applying for.
Update Your Resume
This is the time to go through your resume and polish it up. Make sure your job responsibilities and accomplishments are aligned with keywords that potential employers are looking up. If you recently finished working at a job, ensure the start and end dates are accurate. Add to the skill-set section and make sure to include any recent certifications that you completed.
Organize Your Portfolio
For Architecture and Interior Design professionals the portfolio is a major component of a successful job search. Make sure your portfolio is cohesive and showcases your best work. Either digital or printed files should be organized and ready to be presented. Leave out loose sheets and random files. It’s not just about what’s IN your portfolio, it’s also about HOW you present your work.
Once you get some pre-screening emails or phone calls from interested employers, get back to them as soon as possible to inquire about the next actionable steps.
If you’re no longer interested in the job, let the hiring manager or recruiter know. Don’t stress about it, deciding not to pursue an opportunity is acceptable. Make sure to notify recruiters that you’re passing because it gives them the opportunity to approach the next potential candidate and you leave them on a professional note. It also keeps the the door open for future opportunities.
Make yourself available for interviews
Taking time off for interviews is difficult but most companies will want to interview you during business hours. Try to make things easier by trying to book more than one interview on the same day or booking early morning or end of day interviews. Don’t expect employers to be available for you late into the evening or on weekends.
Prepare for your interview
Thinking you can wing it because you’re a great talker? I would suggest that preparing for an interview just like you would for any client meeting is a smarter move. Think about specific examples that demonstrate your skills, do your research and have your questions ready. Download our Interviewing Guide to help in preparing for your interviews.
Review Your Online Presence
By now it’s a known fact that potential employers do browse through social media profiles. Now is the time to review your LinkedIn profile and make sure all the information is up-to-date and accurate. It’s also important to be selective on what you post on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
If your social media profiles are shared to the public, remember to have a clear headshot of yourself (stay clear from group photos). And keep your usernames and contact email addresses easy. Avoid email addresses that describe your hobbies such as “FoodieForLife” or “Number1HockeyFan.” Stick to your full name.
Develop a Support System
Job searching follows an open-ended time frame and you can easily get frustrated; Reach out to people like former colleagues, friends, family members and mentors who can be your support system. People who are supportive will help you stay on track and keep you focused and hopeful.
I know job seekers get frustrated with recruiters and employers in this process as well. Set an example and be the candidate they just love dealing with! I’m sure it will forster a mutually respectful relationships that will benefit your career. If you have any questions about job searching or need help with your resume, email myself at email@example.com or one of our recruiters at firstname.lastname@example.org.