In my last blog post I answered questions that I have gotten from job seekers who are frustrated with the job search process. Since I have so many questions, I will answer more of those questions in this blog post.
How can you transition to a new industry in this job market?
What is most important is that your skills are transferable to the new industry. There is a distinction between a profession and an industry. Many professions are represented in several industries. For example, you will find accountants in every industry because every organization needs someone to manage the books. Human resources is another profession that is represented across all industries. If you are in a profession that crosses industry boundaries, it will be relatively easy to transfer your skill set to a new industry.
To ease the transition to a new industry and to gain credibility within that industry, I suggest that job seekers invest the time in learning the lingo of the new industry. Read industry journals and attend industry events. If you learn the lingo, you will sound like an insider instead of an outsider, and it will be far easier to convince a potential employer that you are the perfect candidate.
How should I address an employment gap on my resume?
Perform contract, temporary, or volunteer work. Doing this will help you fill in the gap on your resume, and it has the added benefit of keeping your skills fresh. Also, because you are in a work environment, you are more likely to hear about openings when they occur, and companies are more likely to hire you since they already know you and your work ethic.
What questions should you ask in an interview?
Job seekers need to be able to demonstrate to the potential boss that they have really thought about the position and have some good, probing questions. But you also need to ask questions that will help you determine whether or not this is going to work out. After all, who wants to go through a job search in this extremely competitive job market only to have to reenter the process again quickly because the position is a terrible fit?
So what should you ask? Here are some winning questions:
- What are your top priorities for the person in this position for the next three months?
- If you could describe your corporate culture in three words, what would you say?
- What are the top qualities necessary to succeed in this company?
- What is your vision for the organization?
- What are some of the toughest challenges facing the person who will fill this position?
- What do employees like most about working here?
How much should I use job boards?
I recommend that job seekers allocate their time according to the way that most people find employment. Spend approximately 75% your time networking with the rest of your time dedicated to headhunters (10%), job boards (5%), job fairs (5%), and 5% with other job search activities.
You should keep in mind that with job boards you can decrease the amount of time that you spend on this job search method because you can automate the process. It is very simple to set up a job search alert with the major job boards like simplyhired.com and indeed.com and set your criteria (i.e., job title and location). Once you have done this, you will then have jobs sent to your email address on a daily or weekly basis so that you do not need to search the job boards every day.
How can I maximize networking and online job boards?
By using LinkedIn to search for jobs, you can maximize your use of social networking and online job postings simultaneously. LinkedIn is connected to SimplyHired.com, which is a site that aggregates job listings from across the web. When you use LinkedIn in your job search, LinkedIn will automatically tell you who in your network is connected to the company that has the opening that you are interested in.
If some of the people who come up in the search are your second or third level contacts, you can ask your first level connections to introduce you.
Call 877-743-9521 to schedule an appointment with an executive career coach to discuss your job search questions.