How to Go About Finding a New Job

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 11 February 2021 | Published 13 December 2020

Updated 11 February 2021

Published 13 December 2020

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Whether you're looking for your first job or have decided to explore new opportunities, job hunting can be challenging. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to ensure you have as much control as possible during the job-searching process. In this article, we discuss the steps you can take to successfully find a new job.

How to find a new job

There's a difference between finding a new job and finding the perfect job. If you're aiming for the latter, devise an effective job-hunting strategy. Your chances of securing a great job will increase dramatically if you approach the job-searching process with a clear plan and definite goals. Apart from increasing your chances of employment, a methodical approach will also make the whole experience more pleasant. Here are a few helpful steps you can add to your personal job-hunting strategy to ensure that you stay focused and productive during the process:

1. Determine your goals and dreams

Before you start applying for positions, you need to decide on a clear plan of action. Take some time to think about what your life ambitions and career goals are. You can then determine the type of jobs you think are most likely to lead you on a path towards realising your dreams.

For instance, if your goal is to eventually become a chief executive officer, you should apply for jobs that will provide you with relevant experience and skills. It's also advisable to consider your personality and values when looking for jobs. Introverted and extroverted people, for instance, flourish in different types of jobs and work environments.

2. Get organised

When you are applying for jobs, it's important to conduct yourself in a professional manner. This includes responding to emails in a timely fashion and following up on applications after an appropriate interval. To do so, you need to be organised.

The first step you can take is to create a spreadsheet. It's an effective way of keeping track of job applications and correspondence. In this document, you can add important information like contacts, phone numbers, email addresses, deadlines and points to remember. It may also be helpful to sort your emails into appropriate folders for easy retrieval. Being organised will give you a sense of control and will prevent you from feeling overwhelmed.

3. Craft a great CV

Crafting a professional and appealing curriculum vitae (CV) is one of the most important steps to take when you're job hunting. Prospective employers will decide whether they're interested in interviewing you based on this document. The secret to crafting a great CV is to maintain a balance between providing the necessary information and keeping the document concise. Employers and hiring managers have busy schedules and want to gauge at a glance whether you would be a good fit for the position.

You can avoid including unnecessary detail by tailoring your CV for each individual application. You may need to adjust your summary or objective, and should only include education and experience details that are relevant to the position. Also, remember to add relevant links, such as to your portfolio, and to inform the referees you have listed that they may be contacted. Lastly, make sure to include your success stories and achievements, as this will distinguish you from your competitors.

Related: How to Ask Someone to Be Your Referee: Email Examples

4. Write a catchy cover letter

A good CV may get you hired. However, you first need to motivate recruiters to actually read your CV by providing them with a compelling cover letter. Especially in situations where there are many applicants, recruiters may use cover letters to determine whose CVs to read through. For this reason, it's vital that your cover letter catches their attention.

Make sure to let your unique personality shine through, while also staying professional. In just a few concise sentences, you need to inform them why you are the best person for the job. Do a bit of research on the company and its culture before drafting the letter, as this will inform your tone and vocabulary. You can also include key phrases from the job description to show that you are a good fit for the job opening.

Related: How to Write a Cover Letter

5. Make use of job search websites

Job search websites are valuable tools when you're searching for a job, as they provide useful functions and allow you to easily narrow down your search. To start using a job search website like Indeed.com, for instance, you simply need to create a free account. Their convenient job search engine makes for effective job searches, as you can apply multiple filters, such as location and salary range.

The site allows you to save jobs that you're interested in so that you can easily retrieve them once you're ready to apply. Once you've applied, you're able to track the statuses of your applications. In addition, you can set up job alerts for jobs that fit the criteria that you've stipulated. Indeed sends these alerts to your email account, which means you don't have to access the site to retrieve them.

6. Maintain professional social media accounts

Recruiters who are interested in hiring you are likely to access your social media accounts. By doing so, they aim to gain a more holistic understanding of who you are. Set strict privacy settings for social sites that you want to keep private so that you can control the image you project to prospective employers.

You can greatly benefit from social media by using the various platforms to build and market your own professional brand. Make sure to maintain a consistent and professional social media presence across all platforms. To increase your chances for a specific position, tweak your profiles and posts to better align with the company's culture.

7. Leverage your personal network

When you're job searching, inform your immediate network of friends, family, ex-colleagues and acquaintances that you're looking for a job. Although your contacts may not be able to offer you a job, your chances of finding suitable employment or valuable leads will increase exponentially.

8. Be prepared for interviews

To be invited to a job interview is a huge achievement. You can ensure that you make the most of this opportunity by adequately preparing yourself. Your first step should be to research the company thoroughly, including reading up on its history, key employees, business values and culture. You can use this information throughout the interview to inform your tone and the way you formulate your answers and questions.

Although you may not know which questions an interviewer will ask, you can search online for common interview questions and prepare your answers in advance. Even if these questions don't come up in the interview, practising how to answer interview questions will be beneficial.

Related: 31 Common Interview Questions and Answers (With Tips)

9. Follow up on applications and interviews

If you don't hear from a prospective employer after you've applied for a position or had an interview, you can follow up with a polite email. In general, employers will appreciate the fact that you have a vested interest in finding employment and that you're committed enough to the process.

Make sure to address the mail to the correct person, who typically is your first point of contact or the hiring manager. You should keep the tone light and professional. Thank them for their time in going through your application or interviewing you and enquire whether they have any feedback for you. Even if their feedback is a rejection, you will at least have a clear answer and can tick that employer off your list.

Additional tips to remember

Now that you know how to plan your job-searching strategy, here are additional tips to remember while you're looking for your dream job:

  • Focus on staying positive and motivated, as job searching can be a long process. You should prepare yourself for the fact that you'll probably face a few rejections before finding a new job. View these as temporary setbacks and as part of the process. Establishing and achieving small daily and weekly goals, such as applying for a certain number of jobs, will help to keep the momentum going.

  • Develop a healthy lifestyle, including eating healthy, exercising regularly and sleeping enough. If you're physically in good shape, you will feel better about yourself. Your mind will also be sharper, which will make it easier to make sound decisions and stay organised.

  • Be flexible and keep an open mind. Although it's important to have goals and be focused regarding the type of jobs you want, you should be open to alternative positions that may come your way. Some positions may not exactly fit into the category you've created. However, they may be just as viable or even better for reaching your goals. In some cases, it may also be necessary to temporarily take on a job that's not ideal and to keep searching for more appropriate employment.

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