By Nisa Chitakasem, co-founder of Career Consultancy Position Ignition
When we’re looking for a new job, how many applications do we send off a week? 40? 50? Some of us do indeed churn out applications at this rate and then wonder why we don’t hear back from anyone. The problem is, if we’re spewing out that many applications, we probably don’t have the time to sit down and assess if each job would be right for us and to target our approach to the employers accordingly. The key to getting the right role is not to apply to as many positions as we can in as short a space of time as we can, but to target the right job for us and then invest our energy into getting that one application right.
Here are some pointers for creating an effective targeting strategy.
- Find out about your targeted area of opportunity
Let’s say you want to change careers altogether and you’re interested in shifting to a particular career. You may not know much about it now, but you don’t have to wait until you start work in that field to find out what it really entails. Research your targeted area of opportunity by looking at trade magazines, relevant organizations’ websites, attending industry events and asking your existing contacts about it.
- Identify target organizations
Whether you want to stay in your current industry or shift to a new one, consider targeting specific organizations as opposed to just typing a couple of keywords in to a job site’s search engine and applying to every job that comes up. Look at organizations within your field and see if they match up with your values, objectives and style of working. Do you need an organization that’s close by to you? Will the company need to be flexible around your childcare arrangements? Think about whether an organization is suited to you before contacting it for a job.
- Make a targeting plan
Once you’ve done your research and chosen your target career and organizations, you can draw up a targeting plan. This will focus your choice of industry and company even more. Include in the plan:
- The size of each organization you’re looking at
- The type of business it is
- The culture of the company
- Examine what your plan reveals
If you’ve done your research in order to create your plan, you might come up with some interesting information that will help you choose the right roles to apply to. For instance, you might find that a multinational brand is struggling, whilst a company with a more low-profile reputation is expanding in size and scope and doing exciting, innovative things. Which one did you want to join before doing your research? Which one do you want to join now?
- Think through what you’ve found
Once you’ve done all this, use the information instead of discarding it and reverting back to mass job applications. Your research and planning should have helped you narrow down which jobs you’re going to target. Once you have a manageable shortlist, your job applications will be that much more effective, invoking more of a response.
Article written by Career Experts from Position Ignition Ltd. For more personalised help with your job search and career direction, request your free no obligation phone consultation now: email@example.com. Visit the Career Advice Position Ignition Blog for more career related articles.