job seeking strategies lunchtime session feb 2016

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Job Seeking StrategiesIram Sial

Careers ConsultantCareer Development Centre


ObjectivesThis session will help you to:Understand the different routes into employmentFind potential employers and hidden jobs Assess and focus your job search strategy

2No magic wandJob search in earnest can take anything from 6 months to a year about how you market yourself that will make the difference

Getting startedWhat job do I want?What have I got to offer?What jobs are out there?


Targeting companiesBusiness activitySizeTraining ProspectsCultureTravelLocationSalaryBenefitsSecurity

4Draw up a hit list of companies

Sector Vs occupationOccupation Vs Sector

Iceberg principle


The open job marketAdvertisedpostsThe hiddenJob marketDirect approachesNetworking



Open job marketInternet - engage+-company websites- job sites,, www.milkround.comRecruitment agencies Recruitment fairsLocal and national pressJob centre Plus

6Most people love to job search via the internet, but it is the least effective method; An email is forgotten in 15 minsA phone call may stick in the memory for a few daysA face to face conversation is likely to be remembered far longer if you follow it up

Useful fact: job seekers and employers use opposite strategies to achieve the same results (which makes you wonder how anyone ever gets a job at all!)At the two ends of the spectrum:Employers will prefer to take on someone they know (via networks, recommendations or internships); it is relatively risk free and they know what they are getting.Job seekers prefer to respond to advertised posts, of which there are hundreds of applicants all hoping to be shortlisted; for the employer, this is a high risk form of recruitment, as they never really know what they are going to get.

Finding the hidden jobsNetworking Informational interviewingWork (experience), temping and volunteeringSpeculative applications - in writingCold calling - in person, by phone


NetworkingFamily, friends, fellow studentsClubs and associationsTutors and careers consultantsPrevious employersProfessional associationsAlumni Association

8Networking tip; give your time generously

Social networkingLinkedin, facebook, twitter.....

Establish contact with professionals you have recently met Research or follow specific companies / personnelIdentify industry trends

But take care over your online profile.....


Informational interviewingWhen you find someone who knows about a field or occupationAsk for a short interview / chatThis is not JOB SEARCH it is RESEARCH

10Have a set of questions readyFind out about the persons job role, sector info, how to get into field etcTry to get a follow up contact name or organisationDont forget to thank them for their time

Informational interviewingImportant: You are NOT looking for a job, you are looking for INFORMATIONMake contact with people doing the sorts of role/type of work in which you are interestedAsk if you can discuss their job with themPrepare a list of questions. What information do you want from them? What is involved in a typical working day? What qualifications did you need? Do they enjoy the work? Whats the best aspect? Worst aspect? Do they know of anyone else who might be looking for new staff/able to offer work experience/shadowing?Hopefully, you will get another contact who you can either arrange another informational interview with OR to whom you can send a speculative application

Benefits of networking / interviewingWhat employers are looking for?Information about specific companiesIndustry trends, challenges and opportunitiesJob hunting adviceExpand your networkPossible experience / work opportunities


Networking/informational interviewing exerciseWrite ME in the middle of the pagePick one of the jobs that youd like. Who do you know who might be able to help you with finding information about the job and potential vacancies?


Networking exercise

Runs own building firm and does own HR Tony(Uncle)Theresa(Neighbour)Works in a recruitment agencyJenny (Zumba)Welfare officer in a bankMatthew(Brother)Julie(Friend)H&S trainerSumi(Colleague)Nigel(ex colleague)TU OfficerMark(Her husband)Plays squash with NHS HR managerAs you start chasing leads, you can add to it. The above does not include contact through groups (alumni association, professional bodies), online (linkedin) or warm leads HR at work / at university.ME


Work experience, temping or volunteeringKeep a record of your achievementsMake the most of professional contacts and explore new onesFind out about other job rolesVolunteer for new / extra responsibilitiesBe interested in everything and everyone!


Work experience tips

Sandhya Tanna, Careers Adviser, University of Reading


Speculative approachesIdentify possible companies via:word of mouth / networking newspapers / online business newsonline communitiesprofessional bodiesIdentify relevant contact via:cold calling (phone or in person) linkedin


Speculative applicationsResearch the company / rolesTarget named person, with a relevant role in the organisationDevelop a persuasive, targeted CV and covering letterFollow up with a phone callAsk for further contactsKeep a record of all activity

17Mention in your Covering letter that you will be following up with a phone call.

Your action planWhat are you aiming for?(Your career goals)

What is your current situation? (Job hunting activities underway) What actions will you take? (Specific action steps with target dates)


Useful linksHarvard Tips networking guideCareer player networking, job hunting, social mediaLinkedin student guides to getting started Speculative applications guide - CDC

And for advertised positions, dont forget....CDC - Online vacancy and events systemTargeted vacancy sources Resources/advice/info



Further information and guidance Career Development Centre:20-minute quick queries: Book on day after 9.30amCV, covering letter, application form advice45-minute: individual career coaching,detailed career planning, mock interviews

CDC resources:CV GuideVideos and DVDsFree sector-specific and general careers publications(all services available up to 3 years after graduation)


Contact usCentral London

Cavendish House1st Floor101 New Cavendish StreetNearest tube: Warren St/ Goodge St/Gt Portland St BUS: 453

Tel: 020 7911 5184E-mail:


In summaryKnow what you have to offer and what you wantKnow whats out thereDevelop your networkPlan your campaignReview it regularly....and, if you need help, seek advice and guidance