Organise your job search: 6 tips for 2021

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Organise your job search to improve your chances of success.

The job search is never easy, but you can make it easier on yourself by going about things in a smart and organised fashion. Developing job search organisational skills will help you manage your applications and keep track of the people you have spoken to. These simple actions will increase your chances of landing your dream job.

Follow these 6 tips to organise your job search.

1. Use government sites to keep up to date with the job market

There is some great information on Government websites.  This is particularly important to access at the moment during the Coronavirus pandemic. The Job Outlook website provides a lot of really practical help, particularly if you are not sure what work to apply for.  The Labour Market Information Portal is particularly helpful for those who want to have a deeper understanding of what is going on with the employment situation in Australia.  There is a lot of useful information there that could help you make decisions about how to strategise your job search.  There is more detail about what these sites offer in 2020 Job Market Secrets, on our sister site Clarity Career Management.

2. Keep track of contacts

During your job search you are going to be talking to a lot of people in person, on the phone, and through email conversations. Don’t forget these people. Keep track of names, their position, phone numbers, and email addresses so that you have a pool of job search contacts to refer to now and in the future. Use a spreadsheet, your phone, a diary, an oldfashioned address book … Use whatever it takes to make you keep an accurate record of everyone with whom you have connected.

Don’t forget to include all the people you have spoken to about your job search during informal networking.

3. Utilise a diary – online or on paper

If you’ve never been able to get into the habit of using a diary to outline your schedule this is a good time to start. People who are organized and good at managing their time weren’t born that way. They simply developed good habits. Use your diary to keep track of your appointments and when applications are due, so you can avoid stressful situations. Otherwise you run the risk of agreeing to an interview at a time you can’t manage because you forgot about your other engagements. Worse still, you may miss the date that an application for a great job is due.

4. Prioritise interviews

You might end up fielding multiple interviews on the same day. If this happens, try to schedule interviews that are more important or promising earlier in the day. There’s always the possibility that an interview will run longer than expected, and if this happens you don’t want to be late for the interview you really care about. Give yourself enough time to get prepared and arrive at the company’s office with time to spare.

5. Do your homework

When you are looking for a new job you should be anticipating interviews. Do your homework on any company that invites you to an interview. Find out a bit about the interviewers as well if possible. Don’t only look up the company to which you’re applying, look up competitors and related companies, as well as the current issues the industry is facing. Your potential employers will be impressed when they see how familiar you are with these things and notice the effort you have put in to be prepared for the interview.

6. Use a job search folder – digital or physical

Keep track of your progress on the job search so you know exactly what you have done and who you have spoken with. For every job application keep a copy of the job description and the resume you sent and which you had tailored for that job.  File the information you gathered about the company and perhaps the interviewers. Keep interview schedules, addresses, business cards, contacts, and everything else you’ll need. Keep the folder easily available as much as possible (easier if it’s digital!) because you never know when you will get a phone call about one of your applications.  It is so much more impressive if you know exactly what it’s about when someone tells you who they are and where they are from.

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Jenni Proctor

Hi, I'm Jenni Proctor from Boomers Next Step. Remember when the formula for success in life was simply to strive for good marks at school, gain qualifications, get a great job, work hard and save for your retirement? Yes, I believed it too! For years my husband David and I wanted to develop a business that we could operate anywhere in the world, but both of us were educated to be employees.  We had entrepreneurial dreams and ideas, but still had employee mindsets. 14 years ago I took the giant leap!  I left my job in Education to start a business as a Career Counsellor and Coach, helping mature adults transition from one career path to another, and particularly from employment to entrepreneurship.  I had studied long and hard to gain new qualifications but sadly I hadn’t learnt how to market my new business. About 12 years ago we realized that we were not tracking well towards having the sort of retirement we wanted. We’d saved; we’d invested; and like so many other people we’d also lost some money along the way. It didn’t help that my business was not bringing in as much as I had been earning as an employee. Our dreams of extensive travel and helping our family were being replaced by a growing concern that we would outlive our savings. It seemed that a traditional retirement would not allow us to maintain the lifestyle we wanted. I love helping people plan the next phase of their lives, but we realized that was not going to be enough.  We needed a way to create an income stream that would pay for the travel and other lifestyle luxuries we wanted, that would provide mental stimulation, and would interest us both.

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