Success in your job search should be considered in much the same way as taking any product to market. It’s a sales process. To succeed takes research, careful planning and relentless execution.
You have to know your market place. Who are your customers? What are they looking for? How can you find out?
The advantage for the job seeker in 2010 lies in the amount of information readily available at the click of the mouse. Do your research. Start by subscribing to the major job boards and get daily updates in to your inbox that will tell you who is hiring. This is a great source of market intelligence, telling you which sectors are hiring, which areas of the country the opportunities are based, how much is being paid and for what. It will also tell you who the major recruiters are in your sector or skill set and will enable you to build a list of recruiters with whom you should develop a working relationship (and indeed those that you don’t).
Despite the immense network provided by social media, the 2010 CiPD Resource and Talent Planning survey highlighted the use of Recruiters along with a company’s own website as still the most successful method of candidate attraction. So Recruiters should be an integral part of your strategy.
Not only do the job boards provide a great source of who and where your market is, they are also a great source of understand what the market needs. What words and phrases are being used in the advertising? What skills, experience, achievements, contribution, qualifications are the Hiring Managers in your world looking for? Make a list of these key words and find ways of incorporating them in your CV, ensuring your CV and your online profiles are rich with the words Hiring Managers are pumping in to search engines. Crucial to your success will be not only who you know, but who knows you. Make sure the buyer can find the product.
You have to know your product. This is where you have a huge advantage over your competitors. Your product is unique. You have therefore to understand its unique selling points and you have to be able to articulate them relentlessly with passion and conviction. What is it that makes you special? How do you relate that usp to the needs of your prospective customers? What skills, experiences, qualifications, achievements, personality, attitude, talent do you possess that make you the person that the customer buys.
The competition is fierce, the market place huge, the choice for the customer vast. How are you going to stand out? You must be really clear on this at the outset. Sure your interview experiences and feedback will help you to hone this, to get it clearer and your pitch sharper, but you must understand this before you get started. Don’t be shy. This is not the time for it.
Know your product, know your market place. Next up what are your routes to market? You have to be really clear on what you want and how you are going to get it. Again the job boards are a great source of market intelligence. What’s the application process? How do your target customers go about hiring? Your routes to market are many. In excess of 70% of vacancies never make it to the public domain. Who in your network can open doors? Statistically the likelihood is that it will be someone you know who will unlock the door that leads to your success. Work your network tirelessly.
Have a plan. Have a strategy to execute that plan. Know your customers, listen to their needs, make sure your product is visible, easily identifiable and stands out. Then sell it relentlessly with passion, conviction, persistence, commitment and belief.