Finding a Job: Ten Forgotten Resources
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If you’ve ever looked for a job before – and we’re sure you have – you already know how difficult it can be to get started. Where should you look? What resources are available to you? How can you best use your experience to land a well-paying, validating position in your field? After all, you didn’t come this far to accept just anything.
These are the questions that everyone asks when the time comes for another round of applications, interviews, and relentless job hunting. In a way, it also feels like soul searching. You’re looking for the next chapter of your life – and you want it to be rewarding. Don’t we all?
Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple. Too often, when the going gets tough, we turn to laziness instead of standing resolute. We give up after we realize that the process isn’t going to be easy. Instead of coming up with solutions, we come up with excuses.
Maybe the first business you visited didn’t have any job openings and refused to give you an application – which, by the way, is illegal in many states. Maybe you weren’t invited back for a second interview. Maybe something doesn’t feel right. Or, maybe you aren’t sure where to look next. Maybe you’re not even sure how to find other job opportunities. Now that you’ve exhausted your small set of resources, you don’t have a backup plan.
Believe it or not, you have more resources than you think.
We’re going to introduce ten popular (and foolproof) ways to find local job openings. You should spend your first afternoon exploring each option individually, then pursue your favorite leads. You might find that you have different priorities, now that you have an expansive set of resources to draw from.
1. Online Applications
We could spend four pages explaining how important online applications are to practically all major industries. But we’d rather get straight to the point and explain why.
Online applications aren’t generic. Companies are able to directly ask the questions that matter most to them – rather than sticking to a pre-made application that they found online. You know, the one that asks for your address, phone number, social security number, previous employer information, education level, and signature without diving into any of the important stuff.
For this reason, most companies have some form of an online screening process for their applicants. It just makes life easier for company managers and executives. With a customized application, they can record important information and reject unnecessary information.
After you fill out an online form, you’ll receive a call for an interview (if, of course, you sound like a good fit for the position). It’s that simple. And, because you can find and complete these applications in a matter of minutes, you can turn in dozens of applications each day – rather than three or four a week.
2. Door-to-Door Searches
The more traditional method of finding open positions in your area is by knocking on doors. While this strategy is far less common today than it was several decades ago, you’ll find that it’s still highly effective. Have you ever seen someone walk into a business and walk back out with a job? That’s because they took the plunge and visited in-person. This isn’t always the best method, but it works in a number of situations. If you need a job right now, a door-to-door search and career coaching sessions are your best option. It’s effective, interesting, and shows that you have the drive to go the extra mile. It also speeds up an agonizing and lengthy process.
3. Public Bulletin Boards
If you owned a company and happened to be looking for an employee, where might you post that information? That’s right – a public area. In this case, a public bulletin board.
Bulletin boards are a conglomerate of local information – including job opportunities, items for sale, and public ordinances. You might find them in grocery stores, coffee shops, restaurants, or local businesses.
You’ll often find “tear off” sheets on bulletin boards, which will allow you to rip off the phone number or address of a hiring business. You may also find business cards, which you should collect for later reference.
Once you learn about an opportunity, you should research the company and then decide whether or not to ask for an application directly – depending on how well the position seems to fit your specific skill set and needs.
4. Your Local Library
In today’s web-focused society, we often forget that our libraries remain a great source of local information. Many town libraries offer free computer time, bulletin board space, employment assistance, free research, and quiet study areas. You can utilize all of these resources to help you find a job, prepare for your interview, and learn more about your position. There are few places as useful as a library, which is chock full of books, newspaper articles, and literature that can keep you informed. During a job search, it can be a life-altering decision to explore your local library and gain access to dozens of tools. Don’t let that kind of resource go to waste.
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