How To Make Your Job Search More Effective and Less Exhausting

Looking for a new job at the best of times is hard work and requires a lot of personal commitment.

Right now it may seem like an even bigger struggle for several reasons:

  1. Impact of COVID-19.  Many have lost their jobs.  Not just those at lower levels but accountants and professionals too.  Add to this the uncertainty around the global economy which will mean many businesses are cautious about hiring.
  2. Dramatic increase in applicants.  As a result it’s tougher to get through the screening process.
  3. Employers being more selective about who they will and won’t interview.
  4. Your own mindset or attitude.  I see some on LinkedIn being really positive and upbeat, despite it being a struggle.

Now you may well be thinking that it’s a lost cause right now.  My own perspective is slightly different.

Right now what matters is the how effective your job search is.

Applying for jobs has never been easier.  As a result I see a lot of people using what I call the spray and hope strategy.

By that I mean applying for everything that’s remotely relevant.

It rarely works in a buoyant job market.

It’s even less effective in the current environment in my view.

It’s never about the number of applications you make but about the number of relevant applications you make.

What do I mean by relevant applications?

Applications where there’s a clear match between what the employer is looking for and what you have to offer.

You might be thinking don’t people do this anyway?

I wish I could say they do but in reality what I notice, even among accountants and professionals is:

  1. They don’t spend the time getting really clear about what’s on their personal balance sheet and what they have to offer.
  2. Many don’t know how to effectively review a job description and person specification or if they do know how to do it, still scan over the documents.
  3. They don’t think about the hiring process from the employers perspective.  Adding an accountant or professional to the payroll is a significant piece of expenditure.

So here’s my top tips for making your job search more effective and less exhausting:

  1. Get clear about what you are looking for.
  2. Take the time to get clear about what you have to offer your next employer.
  3. Forensically review job descriptions and person specifications.
  4. Only apply for roles where there’s a strong match between what you can offer and what the employer is looking for.
  5. Remember less is often more when it comes to job search.  A few well targeted applications are much more likely yield better results.
Enjoyed this article?  Get more insights on effective job search in my free online course.

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 7,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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