|A JOB SEARCH GUIDE|
This Job Search Guide is written by Stephen Isherwood, Managing Director of Invest In Your Career Ltd. (IIYC). It provides practical information and guidance on how to secure the job of your choice when in transition out of HM Forces. You are invited to contact IIYC at any time to discuss your job search plans and career requirements.
Your job search should ideally be progressed through two key phases:
- Create your Plan & Implement
PHASE 1 – CREATE YOUR PLAN & IMPLEMENT
Create your plan at least six months ahead of actually leaving HM Forces. Key steps in your plan should include the following:
STEP 1 - Focus on Your Preferred Career / Job Search Target (s)
Research: Take time to carefully research the job market into which you want to move: i.e.
Consider: Take time to consider your key requirements such as:
Discuss: Take time to discuss the results of your research with a member of your Resettlement Team or a Professional Coach from IIYC Ltd that provides free career and job search advice.
Decide: Make a decision on what type of career/job(s) you will target. This can include more than one option, for example you may decide to target job opportunities in both facilities management and hospitality management.
STEP 2 - Produce a Quality CV
Marketing Tool not a Historical Record: The prime purpose of your CV is to market you to a prospective employer by focusing on your qualifications, achievements and suitability for the job you are targeting. Your CV should not be a summary of every thing you have accomplished to date, so only include information relevant to your targeted job or actual application.
Consider the benefits of help from Professionals: Your CV can be produced with a ‘DIY’ approach or you CV can increase your chances of being invited for interview by having it produced by a Professional. All IIYC Professional Coaches are qualified Chartered Fellows of the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development and provide professional help from start to success.
STEP 3 - Decide best route to your Job Target(s)
Evaluate the most suitable route or combination of routes for your specific job search. Consider the following options:
Option 1 - Use Your business & social Network
How to implement: Effective networking starts with an initial list of close HM forces and social contacts and then extends through a chain of names to individuals who may wish to employ you.
- Use a spreadsheet to list names each of whom will be willing to provide you with at least two more names of individuals who it would be helpful to contact.
- Generate a list of at least 50 perhaps 100 useful names, but the ‘quality’ of these names is critical so take care to be selective over your choice. For example:-
- Both your Dentist and the Landlord of your favourite pub will know a wide range of people and each should be able to provide the names of at least two individuals who would be interested to help you.
The key to these initial contacts is to ask them for just two useful names. Neither of these may be potential employers but when you contact these new names then these may lead to individuals who can help you with your job search, even potential employers. When you telephone or email individuals who are potential employers ensure you:
- Explain your circumstance – leaving HM Forces in X months time
Success Rating – Very High
Option 2: - Approach Companies / Organisations Direct
How to implement: Large organisations normally have a career web site where you can register your interest in a certain type of job. This facility enables you to automatically be contacted when such a vacancy arises.
- Register your contact details on web-sites of your choice early in your job search campaign.
Success Rating – Very High
Option 3: - Web Search Engines
How to implement: Using specific web search engines to identify opportunities that meet your requirements can be extremely beneficial. They can automatically send you daily or weekly details of actual jobs that meet the requirements you set within their web site i.e.
- Remember the complete job application and selection process can often take three or four months so submit your applications well ahead of your leaving date.
- Recommended Job Search Engines where you can register your interest in specific jobs and automatically receive ‘email job alerts’ are as follows:-
Success Rating – Medium
Option 4: - Job Advertisements
How to implement: Find out where jobs of the types you are seeking are advertised. Sometimes this is obvious but if in doubt then ask a few HR departments where they normally advertise and / or which employment agencies they use.
- Popular options include company web sites, UK job web sites, national or local newspaper, or professional / trade journals. Many organisations only use one or two of these options so ensure you are aware of these otherwise you may miss out.
- When submitting a job application remember it is the Covering Letter that the employers reads first. They will only look at your CV if they are engaged by the content of your Covering Letter. Obtaining professional help with your Covering Letter will give you a significant advantage over other applicants.
Success Rating – Medium
Option 5: - Employment Agencies
How to implement: Use of employment agencies is expensive for employers so they normally only use them as a back up or for very specialist appointments.
- Employment agencies can be a useful route to the job of your choice, but it can be risky to make them your only route. Through careful research identify the agencies that specialise in the type of job you are targeting.
- Try to develop a good relationship with a consultant from each agency and agree how they can best help you, but be aware consultants are driven by the needs of their clients and not the needs of candidates.
Success Rating – Medium to Low
PHASE 2 – MANAGE YOUR PLAN TOWARDS SUCCESS
STEP 4 - Take Full Personal Accountability
How to implement: You must take full personal accountability for your job search campaign right up to achieving the new job of your choice. Others can provide you with information, assistance and advice but you must be the individual driving everything forwards.
Be prepared to devote as much time as possible to your campaign and expect your timescales to range from several to eight hours a day for five days a week.
- Assume you will not reach your goal quickly and there will be periods of excitement and frustration. Choosing a ‘Job Search Buddy’ can be exceptionally helpful. It’s their job to be:
- Always there for you to talk to especially during periods of stress and possibly despondency
Success Tip – select your buddy
STEP 5 - Maintain Comprehensive Records
How to implement: Your job search campaign must be supported throughout with comprehensive records and attention to detail. Anything less will significantly reduce your chances of obtaining the job of your choice.
- Ideally maintain your records on a computer, but if this is not possible then use some lever arch files to maintain records of each application and your network contacts. If this is not your forte then perhaps a friend or member of your family can help you with these records.
Success Tip – Accurate Records
STEP 6 - Interview Preparation
How to implement:
Skilled interview preparation is exhibited by:
- Being selective in which of your achievements you propose to focus on in your answers by aligning these to the requirements of the actual job specification
Unskilled interview preparation is exhibited by:
- Failing to select what information is relevant to the actual job interview and therefore what must be included in your answers
How do you rate your interview skills?: When were you last interviewed for a job? You may not have been interviewed for several years with the exception of the interview training provided as part of your resettlement.
Being coached for an actual job opportunity is quite different to being trained. Coaching is an investment you should consider making as it will make all the difference to your success.
Success Tip – Interview Preparation
STEP 7 - The Job Interview
Success Tip – The Job Interview
STEP 8 - Perseverance will bring Success
Unless you get an early break then assume your job search campaign will last up to six months possibly more.
Please contact Invest In your Career Ltd to discuss your specific job search requirements and for professional help from start to Success.
|Last Updated ( Wednesday, 03 November 2010 )|
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