A job search is almost always a formidable task – whether you are starting a career or looking for further advancement. We all do it at one point or another – some of us are successful and some not so. Read more to find out what makes landing a perfect job a success!

Have you been thinking of making a career move and don’t know where to start? Perhaps you are increasingly getting bored at work and have realised that opportunities for growth are limited. Or like other people in the economy – you might have been laid off, and are currently unemployed. Never mind the reasons – the right career is here for everyone! You just have to work hard enough to find it.

How many of you think that the sole reason to work is bringing home money to live comfortably enough? While compensation is important in any job, it is not the be-all and end-all in any case. If you don’t find your work inspiring and rewarding, it’s really tough to keep the momentum going to advance in your career. Given below are 5 tips that make your job search more meaningful and help you achieve success.

1. Explore career possibilities The first step in your strive to land that perfect job is to understand yourself.  Ask yourself questions like what drives you?  What is it that you love to do?  What is it that you always dreamed of doing? What are the topics that take your fancy?  What is it that you most wanted to do?  For some people doing what they do to relieve their stress after work – maybe a hobby/vocation might be the perfect answer! Start taking notes on clues that make you do more of the work that you like to do.  Keep on jotting down no matter how improbable they seem.  The trick is to find what works with your strengths and not so much on your weakness.  Take a long look at who you really are and remember – it is never too late to change fields. Don’t get underwhelmed with the fact that you’re 10 years into your area of work and you would prefer to do something else.

2. Identify careers that match your interests: There are a multitude of career tests that can help you zero down the options that suit your personality type. They might not be able to pinpoint the right career but can definitely tell you what is important to you in a career and what draws you towards a certain career type. Do extensive research on the options presented.  Talking to someone who is in your chosen field of interest also helps.  Make sure you are aware of career advancement opportunities in your chosen career.

3. Unlearn, Learn, Relearn: Once you have your chosen interest, take time to figure out the skills that you need to learn. List of all them and look for opportunities where your current skills can be groomed and used to the best of your advantage. Utilise your current position by looking for on the job opportunities that develop new skills.  Volunteer. In addition to acquiring new skills, you can get in touch with people who can get you a job! Some areas require new education – you can join evening/part time/accelerated courses that let you work while you study. Nowadays some organisations reimburse tuition fees after finishing the course.

4. Apply for Jobs: Develop your CV and cover letter based on your ideal job. Later however when you apply to jobs, you would need to change not only the cover letter but also the CV to highlight your competencies and how they match the relevant job. Ask everyone for input on your resume. Keep what works for you and toss the rest out. Research the organisations before applying, explore their websites, study their reports and read all you can about them on the internet. Without doubt the number one way to find a new job is through networking. Check for classifieds, speak to friends and relatives, sign up to online career job boards that will send you an email when a job matches your profile.  Also use LinkedIn and other networking sites to find out which employers are hiring. Contact a recruiter to help you with the search. This assumes more importance when the jobs are high paying and involve high degree of responsibility.

5. Interview and follow-up: So everything went well and you have your interview lined up. Be thoroughly prepared and be confident. You should be able to answer the question of what you do/create/achieve that no one else can.  In other words why should they hire you? Follow up is as important as the interview. Send the HR Manager or interviewer a thank you email saying you appreciate their time – this won’t go unnoticed.

6. Don’t take on too much at once: It is very easy to get overwhelmed with all the work that needs to be done in looking for or changing careers. Remember career change doesn’t happen overnight and requires motivation and diligence. For the same reason ease yourself slowly in the new role. Remember at all times that you are investing in yourself and the effort will always be worth it in the long run.

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