I believe one of the important elements in looking for a job, is not just applying.
Its far more deeper than that.
Looking for a job involves alot of research, time, fine-tuning, networking and persistence.
You could apply for any jobs listen in jobstreet or jobs-db or replying to newspaper advertisements. You would either get dissappointed not having an interview or not getting any replies at all.
First - What do you want and what are you good at?
Being where you are in a company and depending on the position you hold and the salary you draw you, got to be tactical in choosing your applications. You got to identify areas which you are good in, areas where you can add-value to a company. Some companies might need the certifications you have and some companies might need the characteristics or years of experience you have. You do not necessarily want to apply for a Account Executive job when you have four years of experience knowing that you could be applying for an Account Manager job right? Well, you got to identify your key areas which you are good at. Knowing your key strenghts you are able to sell yourself better to the company and setting yourself different than the average candidate who is applying for a job.
I recently read a book and it says: 'we should be spending about 5 hours a day looking for a job that we really want'. This makes sense. Sometimes when you are reading about a vacancy or a Job Description you need to fine tune your CV based on the job specification. It is not a good practise having the same CV being sent out to a few companies. Each company is has its different set of expectations and requirements. Candidates should take sometime and learn the job specifications and tailor their CV's to the said Job Description which is listed on the advertisement. That way your CV stands out more and the inteviewer will spend more time reading your CV knowing that you have the desired skillset that they are looking for.
Realise how alot of things you do looks better than you have spend more time on it looking at every single detail? Yup, fine tuning your CV is very related to TIME. You should fine-tune your CV to job descriptions or fine-tune your CV outlining your strenghts and experience. Spend a little time looking at how you word your experience, introduction and your cover letter. The interviewer at anytime has only 30 seconds to read your document before it goes into the KIV file and big chances are, it will not be read again. These 5 hours a day looking for a job entails fine-tuning and research.
Cocktail parties, job fairs, PC Fairs or seminars are good ways of networking. Alot of times i find alot of good potential candidates and employers during these social networking events. Potential employers can be found there. Knowing that you have met either a HR Manager, CEO or CFO or a VP of Sales, it is easier for your CV to be read. You have the introduction sorted out and what comes next will be the persistence in telling yourself 'i got to follow up on the chat, i will email them my CV today'. The next day, your email will be read knowing that you are still fresh in their headspace. In good faith, they wil cal you in for an interview. Networking always has its upside.
You have already given up when you do not try and when you do not attempt. Job hunting can be very frustrating waiting for answers. Ive known alot of people who have given up job hunting because of the lack of perseverance and persistance. At the end of the day all it takes is a little follow up and before you know it only a matter of minutes is gone. A kind phone call or an email sometimes is the trick to letting potential employers know that you are keen for the placement and that you WANT to join their company. It is all persistance. It is the can do attitude which always wins.
A CV is a marketing tool. It outlines who you are, what you are compared to others and it defines you - yourself. It is like a HP Proliant Box brochure, it has its specs, price, colour, strenghts, competitive advantage and its value add. A CV is very much like that brochure.