The official blog of Abacus Group — a place to share our knowledge and thoughts on trends in recruiting

November 24, 2015

Want a New Job Next Year? Here are 10 Easy Actions For Right Now

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Many professionals are determined to secure a change in employment in the New Year. That’s a very smart plan. The talent-driven market will surely produce countless opportunities for career development in 2016.

But commencing a job search is daunting and, with the holidays approaching, most individuals will find it difficult to make time for a full-fledged hunt before January.

To help you begin, we’ve compiled 10 small, painless action items that you can tackle during December. The tasks on our list do not need to be completed in any particular sequence; you can attack them in the order in which you see fit. There’s no need to complete them all at once—or all of them, ever—but, together, they can provide a solid foundation for your search. Take a look.

1. Refresh Your Resume

At the heart of your job search, this one-to-two-page document is your biggest marketing tool. Refine the content and ensure that it’s current. Once you’ve developed your core messaging, the resume can later be tailored to specific positions.

2. Refine Your LinkedIn Profile

There is no doubt about it: a strong LinkedIn profile is imperative. Review the following questions: Is your title current? Have you listed your skills? How about your photo—do you need to take a new one? What LinkedIn groups would be effective for future networking?

3. Research Current Opportunities

What’s out there? Take a look at job boards like ours, Indeed, CareerBuilder, Monster, Dice, and LinkedIn to explore opportunities for which you’re qualified. To save time, create job alerts to eliminate manual searches and to receive notifications about relevant positions.

4. Clean Up Online Activity

Find and remove questionable content before employers and recruiters can use it to disqualify your candidacy. Do some routine checks on your online presence to make sure that nothing incriminating, embarrassing, or overly personal is visible on the Internet.

5. Revive Your Subject Matter Expertise

Read and listen to what’s going on in your professional world. Beyond the obvious sources like business publications, check out social media, blogs, and podcasts to absorb new information and refresh your relevancy in your field.

6. Evaluate Compensation

In order to earn what you deserve, you need to know what you deserve. Using a combination of job listings, salary sources like Payscale.com, and evaluation of your own accomplishments, determine the total compensation you are looking for in your next position.

7. Connect with Recruiters

Working with a recruiter at any time can be stressful, but establishing this new partnership when you are not desperately in need of a new job opportunity is, in my ways, quite ideal. By networking with recruiters early, you can ensure that your resource is qualified and reputable. Additionally, you’ll be less likely to jump on a position that isn’t right for you.

8. Outline Search Criteria

What are your “must-haves” in a new role, and what would you absolutely like to avoid? Think: location, industry, company size, workplace culture, function, and supervisory responsibility. Start jotting down a rough sketch of your ideal new opportunity.

9. Join a Professional Association

Professional clubs are more than prestigious; they make for excellent networking opportunities. Give your resume and your network a boost simultaneously. As most organizations have routine meetings in large metropolitan areas, getting involved is quite convenient and requires minimal effort.

10. Reflect on Accomplishments

What are your biggest professional wins in your current role? This is something you’ll definitely need to communicate clearly to prospective employers. Develop a list of three to five achievements—with corresponding metrics—that you can use to bolster your credibility.

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