What’s in your job search toolkit?
So, you are ready to start your job search, but what do you need to get started and stay on track until you find a job? Find out what we recommend and maybe add a few of these to your list.
Resume, cover letter, LinkedIn
- These are the essential tools to get started, and if you are not confident in these items, I would prioritize these first and ensure they are completed before you start. There is nothing worse than locating a great job and not having a resume, cover letter or LinkedIn profile ready to go.
The jobs that you wish to apply
- Some people are unsure what they are looking for, so for these people, they can type in some keywords into Google (“IT Analyst jobs Toronto”) and see what comes up, or they can go to a dedicated job search website like Indeed and search by your city (“Nurse Calgary jobs”).
- If you do not have an email by now, you will need an email address to apply to jobs and receive details from prospective employers.
- If you share an email with someone or your email is unprofessional (firstname.lastname@example.org), I recommend signing up for one and ensuring it’s professional (email@example.com). Gmail is a good tool, but there are other options available.
- Companies are still using the phone to call candidates, so buy the service for the duration of your job search, set it up, and then test it out.
- A past client was missing job calls because they did not want to spend $7 per month on voicemail. It’s a good investment and compared to missing out on $65K+ per year, it’s not that big of an expense.
Computer or access to one
- Smartphones and tablets have limitations, so if you can afford one (and it will be helpful for other purposes), I would invest in a laptop/desktop. It’s much easier to edit your documents, and the interface is easier to complete document maintenance.
- Setting a certain amount of time per day to locate jobs and apply is a good way to stay on course and keep yourself motivated.
- I would recommend investing an hour or two in the morning, locating jobs, then applying to those jobs that match your experience in the afternoon.
MS Excel, Word, Google Docs
- All these tools are essential. Excel or some other spreadsheet is used to keep track of the jobs you applied for, the date and other important details; Word or Google Docs are great for saving those job postings (not just the web address but copy and paste and save the postings), and Google Docs or Word are important for document editing.
- I would try to find at least four references you can rely on to help in the job process. At least one should be a supervisor or manager, and the rest can be co-workers, clients/customers, vendors, and other people you communicate with. A good recruitment person will want to see how you interact with an array of people, not just your manager or supervisor.
Those are a few essential items you should add to your job search checklist. Do you have any other items you wish to add? If you know someone who is starting their job search, share this article or the main points with them and good luck!