Whether you’re new to job searching or just haven’t job searched in a while, you may be feeling a bit adrift. Job searching can be a complicated process — and it often doesn’t give you a lot of feedback to work with. To help, here are some answers to the most common questions.
1. How do I craft the perfect resume?
- You need to attune your resume to “keywords.” Your resume will almost always be scanned by a software solution before a person reads it.
- You don’t need to condense it to a single page anymore. Though ideal, multi-page resumes have become more common.
- You may want to consider leaving some positions out. It’s now become normal to only highlight your most important job experiences.
There are professional resume writing services that may be worth the investment for your job search.
2. What’s the ideal follow up to an interview?
Sending a physical card has become somewhat antiquated, but that can be a benefit — many hiring agents find it thoughtful. At very least, you want to send a follow up email after the interview. Don’t ask whether you have the position: simply thank the hiring manager for their time and reiterate why you are excited about the position.
3. Why can’t I get any responses to my job applications?
You generally won’t hear back about positions you aren’t going to get. It’s unfortunate, but many hiring managers just don’t have the time. In many markets, a single job could get dozens or hundreds of applicants.
But you also want to consider the fact that something might be wrong about your application. Think about whether your resume truly reflects the aspects that each job position is looking for, and ask a friend you can trust to review it.
4. Can I apply to jobs out of state?
It’s difficult to get a job from out of state. In general, you should only try to do this for positions that have fewer applicants: positions that require specific experience and skill sets. Don’t bother trying to hide the fact that you’re out of state; hiring managers are able to see through P.O. boxes and will know the second they try to arrange an interview.
5. What should I do if I don’t have experience?
It’s the classic conundrum: I need a job for experience, but I need experience to get a job. But if you think about it, you may have more experience than you think. Volunteer work, intern work, and even school activities can all be considered “experience.” If you truly don’t have any experience, ask family and friends if they have any leads — and interface with your school. There are jobs out there for those without experience, but they take more legwork to get. It’s a matter of supply and demand.
Finding a job requires a lot of work. You need to put in a lot of applications and take advantage of every call back. Eventually, with the right resume and the right expectations, you should be able to find the right position for you.