Although today’s advice could also be relevant to someone looking for a career change, it will be geared first and foremost towards new graduates and those working hard to obtain that status. Armed with college degrees, they often find themselves frustrated as to which career path to pursue, despite being full of enthusiasm and passion to join the workforce. (We know what we’re talking about as we’ve seen our fair share of Business Administration grads struggling with making a choice between manufacturing, sales, marketing, IT, e-commerce, and whatnot.)
Target your job search
Now, wouldn’t you agree that expecting to hit the bull’s eye if you don’t even have a target is just plain silly? That same is true when it comes to job search – if you don’t know what you want to do and what you’re great at doing, you’ll be doomed to working in unfulfilling positions all your life. So take a minute to identify your preferred niche before you begin writing your resume.
Use your personal preferences to help identify your niche.
To have a fulfilling career, one must not only have an aptitude for the position, but one must be able to gain personal satisfaction. So take some time to really identify the type of position that would truly make you happy.
Here are a few tips:
- Make a list of all industries that seem appealing to you. Then inventory your personal strengths. (Are you a great communicator? Can you strike a deal? Excellent at planning and organizing? Expert in microbiology?) After that, search job boards for positions that:
a) are in your desired sector,
b) require your level of education/knowledge, and
c) make use of your special skills.
Research the position and the company.
- If you’re choosing between several different career paths, try interning or job shadowing professionals who have already achieved something in each of your target positions to better understand whether or not you are a good fit for the desired role.
- Have you been dreaming about working at a certain company? Then do some research to know more about their culture, hiring process, network with their employees, etc. If the new information does not change your initial intent, and there are no suitable roles for you at the moment, it might be a good idea to take a job you’re overqualified for/not that interested in, but only if it offers potential growth. That way, you’ll get your foot in the door, learn about the company from the inside, set or adjust your career goals, and map out the next steps for moving towards them.
Tailor your resume and cover letter accordingly.
- Remember to not only target the position but also to use job posting for these positions to help target your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile. Use the keywords in the job ad to help show the HR manager that you are the perfect candidate as well as to make it past the dreaded ATS systems.
- Not only do you need to have keywords for the industry but for the career level. For example, the keywords for an Executive Director Software Development Resume may be very different than those of a Software Engineer Resume.
- If you are applying for different positions, it is also important to adjust these keywords for each position you apply for. You also need to remember to adjust not only the resume and cover letter but also your LinkedIn Profile.
If you need assistance on how to target your resume or other career documents, reach out to one of our award-winning resume writers. Please use the link below to book an appointment for a Complimentary Resume Review. https://calendly.com/arno-ics/complimentary-resume-review.