Doing Homework for Your Job Search

Posted August 21, 2013
By Clay Cerny

Is your job search stuck in park or, worse still, moving in reverse?  Over the last 8 years, I’ve worked with clients who are unhappy with the progress of their search.  Often the biggest problem isn’t that a job seeker isn’t putting forth a good effort. The problem is more often preparing for a focused job search.

Before you write your resume or apply to a job, the first step is to do some homework.  Start by collecting 5-10 job posts that would be ideal positions for you.  Review the job requirements and note how you are a good match for this kind of position.  Next, consider how you might have transferable skills and experience that an employer would value.  Finally, note the little things such as computer skills, certification, and compliance.  These details are very basic and they are also easy to use as a way to scan a resume.

Note all of your selling points and put together a resume that will speak to the employer’s needs.  Don’t get caught up in a situation where you have to check off every job requirement bullet.  Few if any applicants will be able to do this.  Use the gut check test: If you think you can do a job, apply for it.  However, be sure to do your homework.  That will the first step in making the phone ring.