Due to the popular resolution to find a new job in the New Year, many companies see an uptick in applicants vying for vacancies. Below are some important objectives to keep in mind as you look for the job of your dreams.

Resolution 1: Don't leave one bad situation for another.

If you're unhappy in your current role, it may be tempting to take “any job” to get out of a bad situation. However, if you accept the first position offered to you without doing your due diligence on the role and the company, you may ultimately end up in a worse situation. Don't let your desperation to escape a bad job cloud your judgment during the job-search process.. Take time to evaluate any and all opportunities that come your way.

If you're unemployed, your urgency to find work may be very strong. When evaluating each role that comes your way, consider how it would or would not fit into your long-term career plans. Depending upon your situation, it may make more sense to take on a seasonal or temporary role with less responsibility while you continue to hunt for a full-time position that's a great fit. This would allow you to bring in some income, while providing enough flexibility in your schedule to continue your job search.

Resolution 2: Ask the important questions.

Before you jump into a great new gig, make sure the position is the right move for your career in the long run.  Consider the following questions during the interview process to figure out if the new job is a step up from your old one:

  • Does this position offer either an increase in salary or an increase in title and responsibilities? Both?

  • Does the role include a comprehensive benefits package? Is it a step up from your previous position's benefits package in one way or another? (e.g. the new company may offer a medical insurance plan with slightly higher copays, but at no cost to you, or it may not offer as many sick days, but offers twice as many vacation days?)

Note the context of the replies you receive to your questions. Does the company appear to offer a strong work-life balance? For instance, while free lunches and dinners onsite may seem like good benefits, it also implies that the company likes its staff to work through mealtimes. Do the other interviewers seem to have specific, genuinely positive things to say about the company or does it feel scripted? Overall, is this a true upgrade compared to your current job?

Resolution 3: Stay organized.

Given the competitive nature of the job market, it's likely you'll apply for a multitude of openings at different companies. Keep track of all the hard work you're doing; often, the job search can feel like a full-time job in itself!

I recommend keeping a spreadsheet that lists all the jobs you've applied to, the company names, the contact you reached out to, your application dates and, finally, some details/key points for each of the roles. This will come in handy if you receive a call back for an interview and need something to jog your memory, as companies often take weeks to review applicant information and contact their prospects. If you have a smartphone, save this spreadsheet using a service such as Google Drive, Dropbox, or OneDrive so you can access it when you're not at your computer.

Carve out time in your daily schedule to dedicate to your job search. Don't put yourself in a compromising situation by looking for a new job while at your current company. In addition, avoid searching during time with family or friends, which can make them feel like a second priority. Set aside an hour or two each day, perhaps before work hours or for 30 minutes after dinner – whatever you can spare – that can be wholly dedicated to your job hunt.

Resolution 4: Practice holistic self-care.

The search for a new job and the transition to a new role rank highly among the most stressful of life events. Make sure you take care of yourself during this process. Remember to observe mealtimes and do what you can to relax during those periods with a temporary distraction.

If you are unemployed and looking for work, remember to partake in reaffirming activities that boost your self-esteem, bolster your sense of self worth, and increase your confidence. That way, when you're called in for an interview, you'll be ready to tell the employer all about the wonderful skills and talents you have to offer.

Lastly, remember to stay in optimal physical condition. Work as much as you can to ensure you're eating healthily, getting a good night's rest, and taking time out of your schedule to exercise, decompress, etc.

Resolution 5: Let the resume professionals help!

Your resume is your biggest asset during your job search. Professional resume writers have years of experience serving clientele from all career sectors, and at all levels. It's a wise investment to hire an expert who can objectively evaluate your information and turn it into a polished, well-written, and keyword-optimized document. Most professional writers are also skilled in the development of LinkedIn profiles, which serve as a crucial element in a modern job-search process. If you have cohesive, professionally-prepared documents at your disposal, you'll be able to enter any interview with confidence and reassurance.

If you're changing careers, resume experts are also skilled in making sure that the transition flows smoothly. Plus, having a team of professionals take care of this step in the search process will free up your schedule to focus on networking with valuable connections and targeting job openings.

Looking for a new career in the New Year? Let us help!

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