“You need to know what kind of jobs you’re looking for, what skills you have to offer and how to effectively market yourself to compete.”
I’ve been telling people for years that just 3-5% of employment ads can be found in the newspaper and they must broaden their search. Over the past month, I’ve been bringing the job ads from my Sunday paper to a client on unemployment who was trying to save money by not buying the paper. I was shocked to see that the Sunday ads are down to two three three pages! So that’s even less than 3%. Many folks now rely on Craig’s list the way they relied on newspaper classified ads. But that’s still no more than 5% of all job postings. I’m not saying don’t look in the paper or on Craig’s list. But, you have to know where else to look to find the other 92% of available jobs.
First of all, if you’re one of those people saying “I just need a job, any job”, you’re in trouble. You need to know what kind of jobs you’re looking for, what skills you have to offer and how to effectively market yourself to compete. If you’re a career professional saying “I’ll just take janitor or data entry jobs. I need something!” you’re not likely to be offered the position because employers assume you don’t really want the job.
Work with a career counselor or career development facilitator to discover what kind of work you want to do, assess the skills you already have and figure out how to get the skills and/or credentials you’re lacking. Your strategy may be first seeking whatever job you can get, sometimes going back to a field you’re ready to leave, with a long term plan to build a new career and ultimately get that dream job.
Once you’ve identified the career area or areas in which you want to work, start coming up with a list of possible job titles to enter into databases as you search. The U.S. Department of Labor’s O*NET database has a list of possible job titles for each occupation. Go to www.onnetonline.org and type in a word or two about the job in the Occcupation Quick Search box in the upper right hand corner. This will bring up a list of possible jobs, which you can open for more information.
SFCC Career Services also has a great list of job websites to expand your search on their Job Postings and Career Events web page (www.sfcc.edu/job-postings) You can access SFCC’s off-campus jobs data base “Your New Job” for free, a Favorite Employers list of links to employer job pages, info about hiring events, links to a Facebook resource, and more.
Remember, it’s not just about finding the job you want. It’s also about knowing how to successfully market yourself to beat out your competition and get that job.
Originally published at SantaFe.com on November 19, 2012
Updated February 4, 2019.