The Ultimate Jobs Search Strategy for Continuous Employment was developed based on data from many top sources, like the US Bureau of Labor Statistics and independent data from HomeOfficeCareers.com. The purpose of the strategy is to help people find jobs faster, get started working sooner and most important of all, to stay employed without having periods of unemployment. You can go online, as I have, and you can find many fine articles and resources about the best job search strategies. Most of these resources say pretty much the same thing, such as, be proactive, apply to a lot of jobs and know your abilities. But what each of these job strategies are missing is the advice on how to keep from being unemployed.
The Job Search Strategy I teach our members here at HomeOfficeCareers.com is to always be searching for a job, even after you are employed. The recommendation is as follows: If you are currently unemployed and looking for work, then you should search our website daily for new work from home positions posted, and then once you have begun work, continue to search our jobs once to twice per week thereafter. Right now, you are either thinking of one of two things; either you think I’m crazy to recommend to people to keep looking for jobs even after they start working, or you understand the logic I am sharing with you. Carefully read the data in the next two paragraphs and then you will understand why this is a logical and wise strategy to keep yourself employed.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics; it takes the average person 3-4 months to get a job when they’re unemployed. But, roughly 30% of unemployed people will be that way for more than a year. People age 18 to 34 are going to average more than 10 different jobs during that period. With many workers not joining the workforce until after many years of university studies, would mean that on average you could expect to find one new job every year and half, or more.
According to the Home Office Careers Employment Report, roughly 2 out of every 3 jobs posted for work at home are for part time positions. Work from home jobs, which are only what we post here at HomeOfficeCareers.com, tend to be shorter in duration than traditional jobs. Frequently, home-based workers will have more than one position. Working two or more part time jobs from home is not uncommon.
Bringing together the information from the last two paragraphs, the data from US Bureau of Labor Statistics and the data from the Home Office Careers Employment Report, and you know understand why I highly recommend that if you want a long and continuous career – you need to always be searching for jobs, whether that’s daily, or weekly depending on your current state of employment. For instance, imagine if you are currently unemployed and then you get a good but part time work from home job after 3 months of searching. You feel good, you do your job and you enjoy that extra time you now have to live it up a bit and catch up on some rest. Six months fly by and next thing you know, your part time job is terminated and you’re unemployed again and looking for a job. Three more months pass unemployed and then you get another job. This cycle goes on and on. But if you take a step back and think about what happened, in the course of 12 months, you only worked 6 of those months and they were not even full time.
Now, let’s see what happens in the same example above, but you use my Ultimate Job Search Strategy instead of the typical one that just left you unemployed for half the year. You start off unemployed and after 3 months you get your first part time job from home just like the previous example. Except, in your spare time, you continue to search for other jobs. After another 3 months you get a second part time job from home. Now you’re making double what you were, but you understand the process and the statistics so you continue to search for jobs, but just once per week now that you’re busy. Like before, after 6 months your first part time job is terminated, but you still have your other job, you continue to make a living. Soon thereafter you have interviews scheduled because you were already searching weekly and you had your eye some new opportunities you recently viewed. This cycle goes on and on, but rather than spend the year half unemployed, using the Ultimate job search strategy you may have started off without a job, but once you got going you stayed employed, because you are staying ahead of the game, you are not letting yourself fall into unemployment.
The best way to summarize The Ultimate Job Search Strategy would be: Keep searching for jobs as long as you are working. As my recommendation goes, if you are currently unemployed you should be searching for jobs daily and after you are employed you should continue to search for jobs weekly. Everything else you do when it comes to finding a job is consequential, you will get a job sooner or later if you apply this belief that you must always be in the game of searching for jobs whether you are employed full time, part time, or if you are unemployed. The idea is simple, don’t wait to get fired. Don’t wait to be a victim of long-term unemployment; rather than allow the employers to have the upper hand in your career, you can take the lead, you can have the upper hand and move from job to job without ever again being unemployed!
Now that you understand the principle of the Ultimate Job Search Strategy, and now that the foundation for your career has been laid, you can use one of many techniques to help you find work quickly. Some of the basic strategies for finding a job include knowing your abilities and making sure you’re applying to the right types of jobs, being flexible and considering many different types of positions until you can start work (remember, since you’ll always be searching even after you start working, you can always find a better job later), being proactive, following up with employers, avoiding employment agencies and networking as much as you have time to.
Be proactive and willing to try new jobs in different careers if you are not receiving responses from your job applications. Allbusiness.com had a great article called, “Ten Effective Job Search Strategies.” The slideshow presentation quickly touches on ten important things job seekers should be doing to help their job search. Like what we recommend here at HomeOfficeCareers.com, they advise job seekers to be Assertive and Proactive. Waiting around to hear back from a job or waiting to be recruited from a resume search is a waste of your time; job seekers need to make a job out of finding a new job. One of the other good points made by the AllBusiness article is for job seekers to be flexible when searching. In other words, if you are not getting interviews and closer to a job with your current job applications, then you might want to consider other job opportunities. This is great advice, because you can always continue to search for jobs when you are employed, what’s important is finding work, sometimes any work will do.
An interesting article by Job-Hunt.org recommends job seekers to be Proactive at finding a job, instead of being reactive. This is sound advice, since roughly three out of four jobs available never get posted to a major job site. And then to make matters worse, the average online job post receives about 250 job applications! Needless to say, going to a typical job site has its drawbacks, there is too much competition over too few jobs. Proactive Job Search is essential to finding work quickly and not becoming a long term unemployment statistic. For example, here at HomeOfficeCareers.com, even though we have fewer job seekers per job post than any other major career site, we still have numerous candidates per post. So to help our members find work quickly, we advise our members to have a proactive and persistent approach to their job search.
When doing research for this article I came across a few good websites from universities providing career services advice to graduates. The Career Services website from UCSB has a Top 10 Job Search Strategies list which is recommended if you are new to the workforce, like a recent graduate. What I liked about this basic introductory list to job search, is the elevator pitch. This was popular when I was a graduate, everyone would recommend you have a prepared 30 second pitch for a hiring manager or a business owner or really anyone that could further your career. With an elevator pitch, you need to figure out your best attributes and be ready to showcase them in a meaningful and tasteful manner when given the opportunity. This opportunity is typically during an interview, but it can happen anywhere, hence the phrase, the elevator pitch.
Michigan State University’s Career Services department has a more robust webpage for helping their graduates. I love data, and the University’s Job Search Strategy and Research page is full of useful career information. I note that 98% of businesses have fewer than 100 employees and these businesses will not be seen doing major advertising like career fairs or career websites. Another cool statistic every job seeker should think about is that the average person from age 18 – 34, will have ten jobs during that period. Also, many people go to college and graduate studies and don’t start working into their mid- twenties, so in reality the average person before the age of 35 should expect to have a new job every 1 to 1 1/2 years. So much for people worrying about job-hopping! This only goes to show why it is so important for workers to never fully leave the jobs search process. If the average person is changing jobs every 15-18 months, it makes so much sense to be always watching and searching to see what positions are available in your desired field.
Employer-specific research is a common recommendation seen on many college career services websites. I highly recommend it, in fact I think it’s such a good idea – that I created a service to do just that. Home Office Careers was founded by having job researchers go to employer website after employer website and find and validate each work from home job and then present these top positions to our member candidates. This process of employer-specific research is an excellent idea no matter your field. The reason that our service is so popular and successful is because it takes a lot of time and research to find great employers, because you need to go to hundreds of websites.
Don’t be fooled by the allure of employment agencies. If you are highly experienced and you are at the peak of your career and you are searching for a niche position with a high salary, then employment agencies might be able to help you. For everyone else I do not recommend relying on an employment agency for your career, especially if you want a work from home career. Here is the problem with employment agencies for the average worker: While the agencies call it an advantage that only the employer pays their expense for this service, you, the candidate have nothing to lose. This is true to a certain extent. Employers pay the cost of the agency fee which can be burdensome.
The cost of an employment agency gets passed to the employer who is less likely to want to keep this arrangement going with the agency. The company will either want to quickly finish the project they need you for, or if they like you they will want to hire you full time. But, the agencies have a contract with the employers. If they want to buy you out, it’s very costly. This cost while paid by the company is going to affect your compensation. You can expect that the cost of the agency will be passed down to you, either in lower salary or lost benefits.
I have experience hiring web developers through employment agencies. We hired some developers the agencies presented to us; some were fine, others were out of their minds crazy. What I came to figure out, was that it’s the people having a really hard time getting a job, that go to these employment agencies. Normal people can apply to jobs, get interviews and get hired. Some people, even if they are talented, are a bit off socially or behaviorally, or they are strange people and it’s harder for them to get jobs. In my experience hiring numerous web developers through employment agencies, I found that the workers were below average and less desirable than typical candidates.
Follow Up with Employers
Following up with employers you have applied to, is highly recommended. In an article from About.com called, “The Best Job Hunting Tips”, the first thing they advise job seekers is to follow up your job applications with a thank you email to the employer. This is an important step in the job search process. While many job seekers may feel too busy or that they don’t have the time, then I have to ask them – what could be more important that getting a good job? Always follow up with your job applications as a rule unless the job post specifically says not to. Following up with employers can really help you stand out among so many resumes and other applicants that the hiring manager or business owner might be faced with. Your follow up brings attention to your application in a good way, and shows the employer that you are both serious and thoughtful, which are two great characteristics an employer is looking for in most applicants. The follow up email should be short and sweet, and should express your interests in the position and your gratitude for their consideration of your application.
Networking to find a job is actually the most productive way people find jobs. The vast majority of jobs, especially for small local businesses, do their hiring though word of mouth. Frequently current employees might refer a friend or someone they know; usually small businesses do not have the time or resources to go through detailed and advanced hiring methods. Many of these jobs are entry level or commission-based, like for waiters and bartenders or for hourly jobs like retail. To be honest, I have nothing bad to say about networking, it’s always been the way the world works to certain extent. However, like any endeavor of value, networking does not come without effort and commitment. Networking takes a lot of time and thoughtful planning and following up with a lot of people to both build and maintain a good social or professional network.
The other drawback to relying on referrals or networking to get a job is that you’ll be limited to the people you know initially, as it takes time to build a network of people in your field that you do not yet have a connection to. You know who you know, but that network may not be enough, so using social media networks liked LinkedIn can be a great tool for helping you build a network of people you don’t know, but have similar career backgrounds and interests. A winning Job Search Strategy should always include networking, by using your personal and professional social media channels and through old fashioned contacting your friends and reaching out; these are great ways to try to get a job.
There are many strategies to search for jobs, most are perfectly good ideas and recommended for most job seekers. But what makes this article different and so impactful to you, the reader, is that you may never approach your career the same way again if you use this job search strategy. Now that you see the statistics and the data and you see how likely you or someone you know can be unemployed over and over again, especially if you are trying to build a full time work from home career. Turnover is higher for work-at-home jobs so this job search strategy is even more important than for onsite careers.
The ultimate Job Search Strategy is simple but it takes believing in it and applying it to your career. I tell our members here at Home Office Careers – “don’t stop searching for jobs” keep applying, make sure your using our Premium member resources so you know you are on the right track, but no matter what, you have to keep applying to jobs both before and after you are employed.
Have you been unemployed for a long time? If so, please share your experiences with me below!