The Long-Term Job Search

It’s been three months or more, and you still haven’t found the job you want. It’s time to assess what you are doing wrong – and what you are doing right.

Follow up on the resumes you’ve already sent.

  • Pick a few jobs that you really want and follow up with the company once a week or so. Keep your name and resume fresh in the hiring agent’s mind. Be persistent, but polite. Employers sometimes get hundreds of resumes for one job posting and will weed out the people who don’t follow up.
  • Employers do keep resumes on files and will contact you in the future for other job openings.
  • Keep track of specific contact people. Even if you get the info from a rejection letter, keep it on file. Use contact info to send updated resume at later date or to ask for informational interview.

Sign up with temporary or staffing agencies (a.k.a. “headhunters”).

  • Large companies are using staffing agencies to recruit for and hire many of their entry-level jobs. Sign up with a temp agency today so that you are in their database and will call you immediately when the right position opens up.
  • Staffing agencies hire for long-term temporary, temp-to-hire and permanent positions, not just short-term jobs.
  • Most agencies have free training and tutorials for you to brush up on your typing, MS Office Suite or other computer skills.
  • Short-term assignments — in your field or not — can provided extra income while looking for permanent work.

Join professional organizations.

  • Look online, in the Yellow Pages and at the library for organizations and professional groups for people in your field
  • List your membership on your resume to help market you as a dedicated professional.
  • Network with people at your skill level to find out how they got their jobs. Talk to supervisors to find out what they are looking for in an employee.
  • Find people who will give you job leads and that you can use as references
  • Attend events to expand your network and to meet hiring agents in your field.
  • Get information to keep current on the latest local and national developments in your field.

For a fresh perspective on your job search, find a free or low-cost job coach.

Employment services, like the Minnesota WorkForce Centers, Twin Cities Rise, Employment Action Centers and HIRED, offer all types of services for job seekers across the state.

  1. Employment counselors for individual help
  2. Free Internet, computer, fax and phone use
  3. Job placement assistance
  4. Resume preparation
  5. Job search workshops
  6. Professional skills workshops
  7. Government and social service resources

Be productive with your time.

  • The busier your schedule when you’re not working, the quicker you will get into the swing of things when you start your new job.
  • Find a free/low-cost way to develop the technical skills that you are lacking. Get a friend to tutor you, learn from a book, or find a class at a community center. Use this time in between jobs to better yourself and your resume.
  • Volunteer. Doing something to help others will take your mind off of your problems, and help you to keep a positive attitude. If your volunteering uses skills similar to the type of job you are looking for, you can add it to your resume.
  • Network and talk with other job seekers, especially those who are looking in your field. Your best resource for job leads and search tips are the people around you.

Remember – The job you get might not be the job you originally thought that you wanted. Don’t turn down opportunities based on your preconceived expectations. Be open to any opportunity that will get you more experience, contact and professional development in your field.