6 top tips for success in a challenging job market

It can feel stressful to be job hunting at the best of times, maybe even more so at the moment with living costs remaining high, continued economic uncertainty and a lot of variability in the job market.

If you are currently looking for a new role, this article includes our tops tips for navigating the job market to help you beat the competition and land that next opportunity faster:

1. Be clear on what you are targeting and why

Taking the time to pause before launching into your job search and make sure you are clear on what you want next – both in terms of type of role, sector, job title, salary etc. but also culture, working pattern, level of flex required etc. This gives you a really clear objective so your time and energy will be more focused on the types of roles you really want to land, and your clarity of focus will also be conveyed in your applications and interviews.

2. Evidence your success with tangible outcomes

Make sure you have some evidence of scale and context to your responsibilities and achievements, for example: how many people did you manage across how many locations? What was the budget you were responsible for? What efficiencies did you introduce and how did you know it made something more efficient? Anyone can say that they were good at their job, so think about what metrics you can include to prove it and give additional context.

3. Consider the less obvious opportunities

If there are currently fewer vacancies in your previous sector, think about widening your search to other roles or sectors. Start by getting clear on what skills you have and where else those skills could be useful, even if you don’t have the direct experience. Think about how coming from a different sector could be a positive thing for a prospective organisation, and tell them!

4. Network, network, network

Networking doesn’t have to be awkward or embarrassing, even for those that are less socially confident. Everyone that you know or have known in the past is part of your network – whether that’s former colleagues, parents at the school gate, or friends of friends. Do the relevant people know that you are looking for a job (and what you are looking for) so they can keep their eyes and ears open on your behalf? Can you get recommended in somewhere or find out about an opportunity before it’s advertised online? Can you get insight from former colleagues on recommended recruiters they have previously had success with?

5. Be mindful of where you are investing your time and energy

It can be helpful to project manage your job search in the same way you might a work project. Have set times to focus on your job search activity, and make sure you are giving attention to all of the different routes to market (job boards, recruiters, proactively approaching organisations etc), not just relying on one. It’s important to have set times away from your job search, too, to help keep you fresh and motivated.

6. Stay positive

I know this is easier said than done, but the mindset you take into your job search and applications really does make a difference, both to your own resilience and wellbeing but also your success rate. Notice and reward yourself for achieving milestones or the small wins along the way, and lean on any social support during any dips.

If you would like some professional help with your job search, or your business is considering making redundancies and you want to offer your team some specialist support to help them move on, get in touch with our career transition experts to find out more.


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