Resolutions to improve ourselves and our circumstances don’t have to wait for a flip of the calendar—sometimes now is the perfect time to take action. We always want to look better, feel better, spend less and earn more. Finding a new job may be able to help you achieve multiple resolutions.
If your aim is to improve your financial health with better employment, but you still haven’t found a good place to start, we have a few tips for getting your job search started sooner than later:
- Perfect your résumé. Online job sites are a great resource for résumé guidance. Look at what others in your industry are saying about themselves on their résumés and style yours to be competitive. Keep in mind the résumé basics: like brevity, flawless grammar and punctuation, using “power” verbs instead of passive ones, and presenting a clean, accessible visual appeal.
- Make a priorities list. What are the factors that your new job must have? Perhaps it’s a higher salary, better retirement benefits or more opportunity to advance. What are your “would like” factors? Maybe that’s your own office, a company car, or more vacation time. Finally, what are your “no way” circumstances? Moving? Taking a pay cut? Identifying in advance what you can and can’t live with will help you to better evaluate a golden opportunity when it appears.
- Look everywhere. Don’t overlook social media and good old-fashioned personal networking. Use every possible resource in order to cast the widest net. Some job-seekers start their search in traditional ways, such as with the want ads in their local paper or an industry-specific publication. But job search sites and other online job boards also feature plenty of listings – just remember that can also mean plenty of competition.
- Be professional. From how you respond to a want ad to the attire you wear for an interview, your behavior speaks volumes about your level of professionalism. When responding to an ad, stick to the method the advertiser says is best. When invited for an interview, be flexible on scheduling, show up slightly early and fully prepared. Dress appropriately for the interview and be sure to thank the interviewer(s) with a follow up email that same day.
- Consider Alternatives. Have a passion you have yet to tap? Or a hidden talent you’re itching to share with the world? Consider entering the world of consulting, freelancing or even starting your own business. While being the sole proprietor of your own start-up sounds risky, it can also provide financial and emotional fulfillment for those with an entrepreneurial spirit.
Whether you’ve already hit the pavement or have just started to update your resume, be sure to protect your credit and identity when you’re on the job hunt. Be especially wary of scammers looking to take advantage of those on the job hunt. When applying for jobs online, limit the amount of data you provide – like your social security number or driver’s license number.
Remember, respectable employers don’t usually need your personal information until you’re past the initial application stages and will be happy to take the steps necessary to protect your information.
This article is provided for general guidance and information. It is not intended as, nor should it be construed to be, legal, financial or other professional advice. Please consult with your attorney or financial advisor to discuss any legal or financial issues involved with credit decisions.
Published by permission from ConsumerInfo.com, Inc. © 2014 ConsumerInfo.com, Inc. All rights reserved.