Here at Career Intelligence, one of the most common questions we are faced with is, ‘Why Is My Job Hunt Taking So Long?‘
It is a fair comment, particularly because they haven’t faced such a problem in the past. Although there are a couple of reasons why this must be the case, in short, it is due to the job market changing, with a more structured approach now needed to obtain a successful position.
6 Reasons Why Job Hunts Don’t Go To Plan (and how to fix it!)
Before we begin, I want to ask the question,How long is long? For some people a couple of months, for some, they have been without a job for a year now.
This is a particularly important point to consider before resigning. Due to the job market changing, 4 months isn’t necessarily a long time anymore. Be prepared to spend anywhere from 2-6 months actively searching for a job.
1. Applicant Tracking Systems
“I’m Perfect for the Role? Why Aren’t I even getting interviews?”
You may find a job advert which you read and get excited about because it sounds exactly like you. You have exactly what they are after, more than enough experience, almost too much, but you don’t hear anything. How is this possible?
Recruitment firms and HR departments have become inundated with the amount of applications for a single position. So much so that they have hired the assiytance of machines and automation tools called application tracking systems.
What this means is that if your CV does not have the specific information these tools are trained to identify, then your CV will most likely be deemed irrelevant.
How do you overcome this?
Firstly have your CV checked over by a professional who will be able to help you make sure that your CV is well written, contains all the relevant information and is marketing you in the correct way.
Your CV is the foundation to your job hunt, it is your ‘shop front window’, so if it isn’t reflecting your capabilities then you have no other way of impressing potential employers.
With this knowledge, wouldn’t you want to just plug in your CV all of the relevant words these tools would be picking up? Not really. You have to remember that it must be read by a human as well.
The CV must be balanced with the right amount of relevant information, prioritised according to the job description you are applying for.
Oftentimes clients may have been jobless for a few months and expect a headhunter or recruiter to approach them simply because they have updated their LinkedIn profile to “looking for a job.”
This is wrong on two levels.
One, you should never write this on your profile.
Two, that’s not how it works anymore. You have to be aggressive in your job search, applying to many vacancies. If you have only applied to 3 positions in 4 months, you may be being too picky or not finding the right jobs/using the right websites.
In order for your job hunt to be successful you first have to recognise that it needs focus and lots of attention. It has to be something that you are dedicated to and something that you can give your time to.
In a way, looking for a job is a full-time job in itself. If you are not willing to spend the time needed for a strategic and successful job hunt, then get in touch with us today to give you are assessment about your current job hunting approach.
3. Not Adapting Your CV
That doesn’t mean going out and applying for every single job. Successful job hunts are those that are specifically adapted to the job description and position itself.
It is important to remember that there is no perfect CV but there is the perfect CV for each different job you are applying for. Being able to adapt your CV to each different role is key to securing a call back.
Once you have a CV you are happy with you need a strategy about how you are going to adapt it to particular positions. It is no good having the best CV in the world and not knowing how to use it effectively.
Perhaps speak with an Executive Coach here at Career Intelligence who can offer you guidance on how to use your CV as an effective marketing tool. They can help you to start to seeing results and having someone to guide you will limit your feelings of isolation. Quite often a plan is all you need to start feeling excited again.
4. Relying Too Much on Technology
It is easy to apply online and send out applications. However, if you do, from an employers perspective you are a piece of paper (your CV).
Why not eliminate the ‘chance’ out online applications and gain direct feedback from the person responsible for the job posting. There are ways you can do this on LinkedIn nowadays and with a bit of research, finding a number to ring from online applications is easy as well.
Next time you get tempted to send off another application through the Internet then think twice, is there a name or number of someone dealing with that job? Could you ring the company and find out who the agent is? Do you know anyone in the company you are applying to? If the answer is yes, pick up the phone and speak to someone, not only will the process be less lonely but you get a very quick idea if you are appropriate for the job or not.
If not, it’s not all bad news, as they may also have other jobs that would be of interest to you and at least this way if you don’t hear anything back you have someone to call and ask. You wouldn’t get this type of information if you applied online.
An important part of the interview and research process of an applicant will be Googling their name. Having a weak presence online can work against you when applying for senior and executive level positions.
Companies are looking for CEOs that can engage with their audience and proving you know how to do that through social media is a great way to do so.
You can provide a company information about your influence within your industry through the amount of followers you have on Twitter, the amount of people who read your blogs on LinkedIn and interactions you get as well as how much information can be found when Googling your name.
It won’t be the defining factor, but it will definitely strengthen your case if you have a stronger presence as opposed to none.
6. Thinking You Can Do It Alone
When you are struggling with a problem, what do you do? Continue to go at it yourself, or ask someone for help?
As we have pointed out, the job application process has become an extremely time consuming process. Hiring the assistance of one of our professional CV Developers, Career Coaches and Social Media Executives can help optimise the time you spend on the application process.
If anything, they offer a companion, motivation during, what can be, a particularly disheartening time.
Create an action plan to reinvigorate your job search today. Upload your CV to our database and receive a free CV appraisal.