Boosting Your Job Search Productivity: Tips and Techniques for Success
Without a doubt, the modern job market is more competitive than ever before. With the rise of the remote work culture and the fact that digital employment has erased geographical boundaries, you have more opportunities than ever before.
At the same time, this has created a highly competitive environment in which it can be difficult to stand out, as well as to find the right job opportunities to satisfy your needs and aspirations. Not only do you have to navigate through the muddy waters of dubious employers, but you also need to do it in the most efficient way possible.
So, let’s get to work. Here are the best tips and techniques for job search and maximize your chance of landing a job at the right company in 2023.
Combine job search methods
First things first, it’s important to keep in mind that the modern job market is rife with platforms, websites, social networks, and various other places where you can search for a job. And those are just the online channels, but let’s not forget that there may be some interesting offline ways for you to discover new job opportunities.
Here are some online and offline places you can look at and combine in your search:
- Corporate TikToks and IG pages
- Job search platforms like GrabJobs
- Corporate newsletters
- Online career events
- Offline job fairs in your area
- Joining professional networks
- Your own personal network
It’s a good idea to explore all possible avenues and combine various search methods because not all companies will be present on LinkedIn, for example. Some companies choose to run a very streamlined recruitment campaign on a select few platforms, while some may only search for local talent offline.
Broaden your search, and you’ll most likely discover some hidden gems.
Learn to filter job postings and spot the green flags
Whether you’re looking at some open roles online or offline or a combination of the two, you need to stop wasting time on the ones that are obvious dead-ends. While you can’t really know what your future at a company would truly look like, you can definitely spot some red flags early on, which should prompt you to immediately move on to the next opportunity.
That said, you need to filter job opportunities based on the green flags you spot while reading the job descriptions and researching the organization. Here are some definite green flags that will up the potential employer’s score:
- The company lists their salary ranges
- The company works actively to improve candidate experience through personalization
- The company lists, in detail, what they provide to the candidates
- Their social media comments are positive
- Their reviews on reputable websites are positive
- Their current employees are easy to reach on social networks
Fair compensation is more than just your salary
One of the most important issues we need to talk about is, of course, money. Let’s not fool ourselves, the employers are the only ones that think that modern job seekers prioritize company culture or anything else over monetary compensation.
The current rule of thumb in the global job market is to not even apply for a position that doesn’t list its salary ranges. Not disclosing salary ranges during recruitment wastes company resources and your own time.
Without knowing what kind of monetary compensation they’re offering, how are you supposed to calculate your budget or use a budget calculator effectively to plan expenses, living costs, or future endeavors? You can’t, and the worst part is that you can get to the final interview only to find out that you and the employer are not aligned on this matter–and then it’s back to square one.
Prioritize job postings that clearly define their salaries for all roles, but also understand that fair compensation encompasses other important elements. These include:
- Adequate PTO (paid time off), aim for at least 20 workdays a year
- Paid sick leave
- A concrete raise and salary advancement scheme
- Bonuses based on performance
- Company-sponsored career advancement, education, and training
- Paid parental leave
If you want to build a work-life balance and enjoy your work for years to come, then you have to fight for your rights. Remember, these are not added perks; these are essential non-negotiables.
Understand the recruitment process
To find prospective employers and narrow your search, you need to understand the recruitment process. You also need to get a general understanding of the process that each company goes through when vetting candidates.
When you know how an employer handles recruitment, you’ll be better prepared to ask the right questions before saying yes to the opportunity. Generally, the recruitment process will go like this:
- Needs assessment
- Position and job posting creation
- Marketing the open role
- Reaching out to prospects
- Scheduling interviews
- On-platform tests and candidate assessments
- Negotiation and agreement
Now, when a company is using a recruitment platform to build a recruitment strategy, they will have a set of traits and variables, as well as scoring models to compare the candidates. You must tick as many boxes as possible to stand out from the competition.
Make sure that your resume has the relevant keywords that the employer is looking for, which the platform will detect. If you’re applying for an online position, list all the tools you work with and are well-versed in.
Once you get to the interview stage, you need to conduct yourself professionally and work on your charisma—and don’t underestimate that first impression.
Many companies will insist that you first send a short video introducing yourself, so make sure to practice beforehand on creating a likable and approachable persona in front of the camera.
Here are some tips:
- Invest in decent lighting, which will make you look better no matter the quality of the camera.
- Dress appropriately, and avoid looking overly formal or too casual, depending on the position.
- Work on your soft skills. Slow down your speaking tempo, relax, and learn to maintain eye contact with the camera while speaking.
- Learn to smile more and practice a livelier gaze. People can inadvertently project a gaze that can come off as annoyed, disinterested, or even off-putting.
- Get your point across quickly and use your expertise to give some fresh ideas on how you could contribute to this role.
- Use online video editor tools wisely to enhance your presentation. Trim unnecessary segments and add subtle effects, if necessary.
Make a list of non-negotiables
Moving along, another great way to make your job search more productive and efficient is to simply have a list of non-negotiables that will exclude certain employers from the game. We talked about salary and what it means to be fairly compensated, but what else can you put on that list to weed out the poor performers?
Here are some potential job-seeking expectations and non-negotiables that you can adopt and look for during your search, but also during interviews and even onboarding:
- Expect fair compensation and everything that it entails
- Expect a positive work environment
- Expect a transparent and nurturing company culture
- Expect to be respected by all levels of seniority
- Expect to work during your work hours only
- Expect not to be available on the weekends or on vacations
You can complete the list to suit your needs, and always remember that having standards and clear expectations is good for you and for the company. Set clear boundaries but be prepared to give your best at your new job.
Use tasks to manage your time properly
Last but not least, you can look at your job search journey as a job in itself to get more organized and productive. The key is to stay organized and devote enough time to each of these stages so that you don’t miss out on any opportunities.
The best way to do this is to divide every aspect of this journey into daily tasks.
Assign a concrete time frame for each task, and note what you’re going to achieve in that time. For example, if you devote two hours to searching for open roles, then make sure to note how many roles you plan to analyze and bookmark.
Much like your future employer will use time tracking for employees and their work, you should also track the time you spend researching roles and companies and preparing your applications and interviews.
The next task could be to start refining your resume and cover letter for each role so that you can apply. Another task can be researching the top employers, with a clear checkbox detailing what you want to find out about them.
Over to you
Whether you’re just starting out or if you’re thinking of a career change, or if you’re simply ready to transition to a better company, there’s no denying that finding a new job can be difficult. It’s not just about having the right skills and the right experience; it’s also about knowing how to research job opportunities and maximize your chances of landing that interview.
With these tips in mind, however, you can make a concrete action plan to help you land the job to advance your career.
About the Author;
A seasoned writer and storyteller, Sara does her best to share her experience with the world and help brands and entrepreneurs find their voice. She loves the learning curve that comes with writing, so she gladly takes on new topics that will expand her own knowledge and expertise. The only thing Sara steers clear of? Anything resembling a comfort zone in life, as well as writing.