It’s often said that good things take time — but unfortunately, when it comes to the job search, you don’t always have that luxury.
It’s no secret many companies have slow hiring processes — or at least slower than you’d like. Unfortunately, there’s not a whole lot you can do to expedite the process on their ends. You can, however, take some simple steps to eliminate time-consuming obstacles on your end.
1. Update Everything
You might be in a time crunch, but it’s important to resist the urge to click ‘Apply’ for every open position you see without first giving your application materials a good scrub.
Before you start to job hunt, update your resume and your LinkedIn profile.
2. Find jobs that fit YOU
Make a list of your job experience, education and skills. Then, look for a position that you are qualified for. You should apply for jobs that are still in your desired field or industry, but you may need to widen your search.
Consider looking for positions that you may not have originally applied for but meet your needs. For example, if you’re a sales representative, you could search for business development or marketing positions. The sales skills you have likely transfer to those roles. You can also look for roles in a company you want to work for, then plan to make a lateral career move once you’ve worked there for at least a year.
When you apply for jobs, make it a continuous process. Even if a company contacts you for a phone screen or interview, you should continue to apply in case you don’t get the position or the offer wasn’t what you were expecting. In some cases, you may receive multiple job offers to choose from.
3. Consider a temporary position
Obtaining a contract or temporary position can help you fill an employment gap while searching for permanent positions. Here are some benefits of a temporary, contract or freelance position:
- Since businesses often need temporary employees quickly, the hiring process is fast.
- Freelance jobs are usually flexible, meaning you can go to interviews whenever you need to.
- You can meet people who work in your industry and learn about long-term opportunities.
- If an employer in your field likes the job you do as a temporary or contractor, they could promote you to permanent status.
- You can work full time as long as you need and then reduce your hours when you find a permanent job.
A position like this will help you manage your expenses until you find a job you enjoy.
4. Treat your job search like a job
When you’re out of a job and need to find a job fast, your job search becomes your job. As a result, you should treat it that way. Don’t just use it as an excuse to sleep in late every day. Instead, work on maintaining your good work habits.
Get up every day as you always have, eat breakfast, and get to work on finding a job. Try to create a daily schedule that breaks down time spent on the various aspects of your job search efforts.
Above all else, don’t just sit at the computer waiting for a job to come to you. Yes, you should use internet resources to help locate jobs–but you also need to pound the pavement (virtually) and work for it.
5. Ask your Network for Leads
The next thing you’ll want to do is ask your network for job leads. Be sure to tell friends and family members that you are in search of a job.
If you have LinkedIn, post an announcement and mention what type of work you’re interested in. Also, reach out to people at church, your kids’ school, old colleagues, and friends on social media.
Some positions aren’t openly advertised online which is why it’s important to ask your network because you never know who or what they might know. If someone can make an introduction for you, that could give you a leg up on the competition and get you in the door faster.