It can happen to anyone in any industry. You put your full effort into looking for a job. You have some momentum, go on some job interviews, and even find a job or two you think could be the one. Then your job hunt stalls.
All of a sudden, you can’t seem to find any good opportunities and the jobs you do apply for don’t result in interviews or viable opportunities. It happens. Especially now. COVID has made the current job market unpredictable. Some companies are hiring, others are not. Some plan to hire and then things change. It can be a frustrating situation if you are looking.
Even if your hunt stalls, it won’t stall forever. Here are some things you can do to stay productive and get things back on track:
completely refresh your resume
Do not just tweak it and change up a word or two. Start from a clean slate with a new design. Do some searching online to look for examples of the most up to date resume preferences for people in your field. Rethink the focus of your resume, how you lay it out, and what is included. Make sure it is in alignment with your job search goals. Once your resume is refreshed, you can do the same to your LinkedIn profile to make them cohesive.
overhaul your cover letter
If you are refreshing your resume, you’ll need to do the same to your cover letter. Focus on crafting a great cover letter that is aligned with your objectives. Personalize it to show off who you are. Go beyond the practice of writing the same things you see in all cover letters. Be unique and stand out in the pile.
broaden your search
Where you search for jobs matters. Make sure you’re searching multiple avenues. If you’ve limited your search to one or two job sites online, it’s time to expand your search. Make a list of job boards, professional associations, and other relevant sites that post the types of jobs you are looking for. Check them all out one by one. Never used a recruiter before? Consider using one to find new opportunities you can’t find online.
reach out to your network
Who you know matters when looking for a job. Reach out to your professional connections to see if they know of any opportunities. If they do not, they may know someone who does. You never know who is hiring. Reach out periodically and check in to see if anything new comes up.
consider a change in career path
Do not limit your search to only jobs that directly fit your career path.
Consider other areas outside of your current field. Think about other roles that interest you. What other positions are you qualified to do? What transferable skills carry over?
google your name
It is very important to know what is out there online about you. Potential employers are definitely seeing what they can find about you online. So, Google your name. Are there any unflattering things coming up? Perhaps some old Tweets or comments? Unflattering photos? If you see anything that could cause a hiring company to question your candidacy, remove it. Clean up your online presence. Make your social media accounts private.
consider a temporary role
For most, the goal is a full time, permanent position. But sometimes, in order to get there, you need to take an alternate path. For some, this means taking on a temporary or contract role. You can also do some freelance work to build up your experience while you do your search. The good news is the gig economy is in full force and there are lots of short term opportunities to take advantage of if your job search stalls.
It’s okay if your job search stalls, but this doesn’t mean you should give up and stop looking. Use the time wisely, refocus, and work on becoming a better candidate.