4 Time Management Tips For Your Job Search

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It’s true what they say: Looking for a job is a job.

Many job seekers can (and should) spend a full 40 hours each week on their job search. However, if you’ve been following that schedule and haven’t landed one interview yet, you’re definitely doing something wrong.

Get rid of your time-wasting habits and make the most out of your job search with these tips:

1. Apply for jobs that are a clear fit for your skillset and personality.

A good number to stick to for your job search is between 10-15 applications per week, although that number may vary based on your industry and level. Keeping your daily number attainable  will allow you to take a much more methodical approach to the job search and give you the necessary time to conduct appropriate follow-up.

Just remember that sending out blanket resumes in your job search will get you nowhere — make sure you are taking extra time to find positions that look like they would be a great fit for you and would be something you’d enjoy. Once you identify those jobs, take time to cater your resume and cover letter to the job posting, making sure to include the same keywords from the job description in your resume and cover letter.

2. Get off your computer and start networking.

Events and informal meetups relevant to your industry are a great way to make new connections and hear about potential opportunities. Bring some personal business cards (you can get your first 250 for free here), and make sure to get business cards from the people you connect with to follow-up over the next couple days. Send a LinkedIn invitation or email with a personalized note that covers any highlights from the conversation you had.

You can also reach out to companies you’re particularly interested in working for and set up some informational interviews. This is a great way to connect with the decision makers and not just discuss what jobs they have available.

Volunteering for positions that are relevant to your profession is also a great way to get out there and network. You can also add it as experience on your resume to show you haven’t been just sitting around during your job search.

3. Stop getting bogged down in the job search and focus on yourself.  

Instead of waking up and immediately checking your email, hopeful there is an interested employer, try starting your job search each day with a good breakfast and some light reading. You might even try meditating or getting a good workout.

Take advantage of your somewhat flexible schedule to focus on you — it won’t be as easy once you land a job. If you do this, you will find you’re much more productive throughout the day and you can take a less-is-more approach to your to-do list by really being able to find your focus on the jobs that have the most promise.

4. Knock out the important tasks when you’re fresh and ready to go.

Generally, it’s best to get to the most important and challenging job search tasks first thing in the morning — that is, after you’ve had your cup of coffee and taken some “me” time. This might include drafting a cover letter, revising your resume, or sending follow-up emails to new connections from last night’s networking event.

Save the busy work like finding new job postings for later in the day when you don’t need to use as much brain power. Creating a system to follow every day is a great way to ensure you aren’t distracted by things going on around you and make sure you accomplish your most important job searching tasks every day.

Finding a job is a job, but eventually it will lead to something better. Follow these time management job seeker tips to get rid of wasted time in your job search and start landing some interviews.

What are some other time management tips you have followed in your job search? Share them with us!

 Image Courtesy of Sean MacEntee; Flickr

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Val Matta
Val Matta
Val Matta is the co-owner and leader of business development at CareerShift, a comprehensive job hunting and career management solution for companies, outplacement firms, job seekers and university career centers. You can connect with her and the CareerShift team on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, LinkedIn.