Education Career Services

May 20, 2009

Diagnosing Your Job Search

Filed under: Uncategorized — EducationCS @ 6:42 pm

The jobless rate rose to its highest level in decades.  Contrary to popular opinion, however, that doesn’t mean that “no one is hiring.”  In fact, the New York Times recently reported that, even as the economy shed 650,000 jobs overall, four million Americans were hired the same month

If you’re not among the ones who’ve been snatched off the bench, there might be issues other than the U1510925market getting in your way.  Take the following quiz to help identify your greatest job search obstacle.

Your résumé can best be described as:

  1. The same since my school days.  I simply add on to it for each new position.
  2. The encyclopedia of me.  It includes every detail I could remember.
  3. A two-page summary of my job history in a nice format.  My friend proofread it.
  4. Like a product brochure.  Short and salesy, highlighting all my best “features.”

 In searching for jobs, you:

  1. Post my résumé online at various job boards and wait for the call.
  2. Post my résumé and then respond to every ad I see.  It’s a numbers game.
  3. Post my résumé and then respond to relevant ads with a customized cover letter.
  4. Combine online searches with direct contact to companies and networking.

 The response so far has been:

  1. About the same as if I’d sent my résumé into a black hole—total silence.
  2. I’ve gotten a few initial calls but no in-person interviews so far.
  3. I’ve landed several interviews but never made it to the finals.
  4. I’ve been told I was among the top candidates for several positions.

 Your results:

 As you can probably tell, if you answered “1” or “2” to any of the above questions, you need to upgrade your basic career development skills.  We’ll analyze each area (documents, search strategy, and calls/interviews) and help address your biggest problem areas.

 If you answered “3,” you’re probably among the thousands of candidates for whom good job hunting skills have always been enough.  As the competition has tightened in this down economy (now four applicants for every open position), “good” is no longer cutting it.  We have a few high-level strategies to help you stand out. 

Even if you answered “4” to all of the above, check back for some tips on refining your approach so you move from being a top candidate to a top employee.  Look for the red cross symbol to identify related posts.


Amy Lorenzo

Sr. Writer

Career Services International

Education Career Services

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