With the start of a new year, brings the start of a job search. For many, returning to the office in January can bring those familiar feelings of unfulfillment, dissatisfaction or dread to the surface. All of the chatter about a ‘new you’ circling throughout the media may be the impetus needed to make that overdue career move. Here are some tried and tested tips to help you on that journey, not just to another job but to one that truly fits your needs, values and goals.
1. Establish your priorities – before you start applying, take some time to think about what you really want from your next role.Consider what elements of your current role you enjoy, the parts you could do without or the skills you want to develop further. Cassandra Reen, Director of Banking & Finance at Executive Connections recommends you “have a clear vision of why you are leaving; do you want a lateral move, a promotion, cultural change, a salary increment or a divisional/industry move”. Also establish the practical aspects; the location, salary and potential hybrid options that appeal.
2. The CV Update – for some this is the least enjoyable aspect of a job search. However, we all recognise the importance of a well-presented CV.Commercial Director at Executive Connections Laura Naidoo, advises that your CV is a showcase of the success you delivered not what you are supposed to do.Rather than say ‘responsible for delivery of…’ change it to ‘consistent over achievement of delivery on...’, presuming you have overachieved. Don’t have your CV read like a job spec, it should detail your actions and your accomplishments.
3. LinkedIn – now is the time to review your existing profile or set one up. Make sure you have a profile photo and one that is professional, include a brief overview for your current and former roles, also provide educational details. Essentially, you want to make sure your profile is a positive reflection of who you are as a candidate and employee. Best believe Recruiters; both in-house and agency plus Hiring Managers are taking a peek at your profile when you apply.
4. Network – I think it’s fair to say the Irish are fantastic at networking, just not in the formal way other countries may do it. Our way is more casual and conversational but equally effective. With that said, let your friends, family and professional contacts know you are looking for a new opportunity. Discretion is key here as I’m guessing you don’t want your existing boss finding out so do choose who you talk to wisely.
5. Recruitment Agency – granted we have an obvious bias towards working with an agency, regardless, a good Recruitment Consultant is the coach and cheerleader you didn’t know you needed. Job hunting can be a daunting process but having a Consultant talk you through job specs, share insights on best match regarding company culture or information about the company’s strategic plans and provide interview preparation is invaluable. Furthermore, your Consultant is also representing you – presenting the whole picture to the client and advocating for you.
6. Interview – preparation is crucial. Interviewers can determine very quickly who hasn’t prepared for the interview. Research the company, reread the job spec, study your CV. Valuable insight shared by Laura Naidoo proposes having 3 working examples in your experience to demonstrate how your key professional traits are aligned with those that the role demands. Furthermore, be able to articulate in an interview why you should get the job – how you can ensure that you are the successful candidate instead of someone else doing a similar role. Have a couple of questions to ask the interviewer to help understand more about the role, your typical day in that role or future company plans. As much as you are being interviewed, you also want to ensure that they paint a good picture of the company for you to determine if it is a good fit. Lastly, dress appropriately and be polite. You would be surprised at the number of people who get these elements wrong and fall at this hurdle.
7. Know your worth – have an understanding of where you are positioned in the job market. Research salary data for similar positions in your industry. Be willing to negotiate, after all salary is only one part of a benefits package. Are there other options that could make an offer appealing? Another valuable tip from Laura is to write down what your three most important things are so you can honestly assess what is the right option for you before you are ‘blinded by the light’ when the job offer comes in.
8. Counter Offer – Perhaps this step should be at the start of your journey; to consider what you would do if a counter offer from your existing employer is presented. Are you using an offer from elsewhere to gain a promotion/salary increase in your current role? If so, it’s probably worth having that conversation with your Manager before you start the job search. Always consider a counter offer carefully and remember why you embarked on a job search in the first place. More often than not, even though you may have more money in your pocket, the aspects that drove you to look elsewhere will remain unchanged.
Are you ready to dust off your CV? To practice your interview skills? To work in a company that recognises your value? Give our Recruitment team a call – we can help you through the whole process and get you the job you want.