If you've been out of work for a long time, maybe to raise your children, looking for a job and returning to the workplace can be a challenge. Here are a few things you can do to help the search go a little smoother:
- Online Research – Register with the many online job market sites like Monster or Indeed. Usually, you can define the search for your personal requirements, for example, the demographic area and type of job in which you are interested. You should also be able to search for part or full-time posts.
- Local Job Centre – Take advantage of the services at your local Jobcentre if you have one. You may be offered free courses to help you refresh your skills or even re-train for a complete career change. Jobcentres may also organise career enhancing and networking events and are usually the first to know when local companies are hiring.
- Company homepages – Most companies have a ‘Career’ section on their homepage. If you know of companies for which you would like to work, make sure you regularly check their career page for any new jobs advertised. Some companies also encourage you to make a speculative application. In this case, you may send in your application even if there is no particular job advertised at that time. The company may keep your application for future reference and contact you should something become available in the future.
- Advertisements – Most newspapers have a ‘Job day’ when there will be an added section dedicated to job advertisements. Magazines dedicated to specific fields are also a good place to find jobs in that area of expertise.
- Temping Agencies – Working for a temp agency is a great way of checking out a company’s vibe. You have no obligations to stay if you don’t like it, but on the other hand, there is a chance to build up trust between yourself and the employer. This gives you the opportunity to show how well you work and could also lead to the chance of you being taken on permanently.
- Networking – Never underestimate the power of networking. Let your friends and family know you are looking for a job – the more eyes and ears on the scene the better and you never know where an opportunity may present itself. If you’ve lost touch with old colleagues, now’s the time to reconnect. They are the best people to bring you up-to-scratch with what’s going on in your sector and which companies may be hiring.
- Social networks - Find groups dedicated to careers and start posting about your job search. Register with Xing or LinkedIn – headhunters use these sites when looking for candidates to fill available positions. You can also take things into your own hands by connecting with people in your target market.
- Be patient! – Don’t lose your motivation if things take a while. You may have a lot of dead-end conversations but don’t despair, the right job will come along eventually. In the meantime, you can concentrate on honing your interview skills and making sure your CV is up-to-date so that you’ll be ready the minute it does!
Remember this, "The distance between your dreams and reality is action"
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