The Ultimate Job Search Guide for Northern Ireland
8th Sep 2017
Trying to find a job can be a tiring and time-consuming task. It becomes even harder when you have a job and don’t want your current employer to know you are interested in a career move. The best start to a job search is to have a strategy, if you follow certain steps it can increase your chances of finding your perfect job.
Firstly, sit down and think: “What do you want?” – you need to be clear in your own mind what you want to do. If you are a digital marketer and you find lots of jobs recruiting marketing sales executives, just because the job title includes ‘marketing’ does not mean you want to track down the sales career path.
What have you trained for?
This will make it easier when applying for roles and increase your determination in the search process. Setting a plan can reduce your chances of getting to a second interview stage and realising that sales aren’t for you! I know many people like to think ‘everything happens for a reason’ just because a job vacancy is open in a similar field, does not mean it is right for you.
Sometimes you must wait for something more suitable.
If you are serious about using the internet for your job search, it’s time to Google yourself, this way you can ensure anyone who searches your name won’t find any embarrassing images from 5 years ago or that weird twitter account you used to stalk celebrity’s. Secondly, if you have any views which could be of an offensive nature or posts which are unfriendly on social media accounts. It’s time to make those accounts private. As everyone knows, more and more employers are researching their interviewees online through search engines and on social media!
Don’t let your digital footprint trip you up before you get in the door.
Recruiters are constantly searching online for the best talent to place. If your LinkedIn profile or CV is suitable for the role and is feature somewhere easy to be found. You will have a good chance of being headhunted. Optimise your LinkedIn profile with some of these tips! As David Arvin the US business guru says – what’s the difference between Love and the Internet – the Internet lasts forever!
What does your LinkedIn profile look like?
Profile picture: This is your shop window on the world’s leading professional networking site – it is not a personal social media site! If your company wouldn’t use the picture, then I’d recommend not using it yourself. Ensure you’re smart and professional in your profile picture, first impressions matter - even digital ones!
Job seekers: Have an engaging summary outlining what you do and how you could solve a problem for a company. This could include your specialist area and what makes you different from others in your field. If you currently have a job and are interested in a career move, you may need to be more incognito, simply describe your profession and what makes you special.
Content: Update content on your LinkedIn - many professionals have LinkedIn just to view other people’s content or just to have a profile and don’t really understand it. Engage with others, write original content in your specialist area and of course share interesting content from others. Now LinkedIn has been bought over by Microsoft, it has had a facelift and its user interface is increasingly like Facebook. This should make it easier to navigate through if you are not familiar with the functions. Also, check your settings to ensure you are open to receiving invitations or connections.
Request recommendations from esteemed colleagues: let’s be honest, the skills don’t mean anything on LinkedIn, it is easy for anyone to press a button to endorse a skill! But recommendations do, this is valuable content that provides reliable evidence that your skills are truthful from fellow professionals in your field. It provides a more detailed account of where your skills were used.
- Ensure your CV is up to date and includes any relevant campaigns, tools or networks you have recently used. This is easier to do when you update your CV as you progress in your career.
- Add your interests, they do matter to employers! It is becoming more common that companies are promoting how great their staff are. Add your interests to your CV, it’s always a good ice breaker in Interviews. It also helps an interviewer get a better idea if you would fit well into their current team.
Watch our YouTube series on Busting CV Myths
Now it’s time for a job search online
Of course, use the common job boards, Northern Irish job boards can be great. Tailor your cover letter to each job you applied for, I know how time-consuming this can be. You can sit and apply to over 30 jobs in a night but if your cover letter doesn’t provide a clear insight into you, it could be a waste of an application.
Leading Jobs Boards in Northern Ireland
You may also want to subscribe to indeed.co.uk which is a job board aggregator pulling together all vacancies from employers and agencies into a daily email.
How can recruitment companies help?
Get to know which recruitment companies in Northern Ireland are specialists in your area. You can review their websites and even if they have no current jobs on in your sector, you should upload your CV. You are usually added to a database which keeps your details safe for any future jobs which are suitable for you. Sometimes recruitment companies can get exclusive recruiting rights for companies in Northern Ireland, this means that you could find a job that others couldn’t.
This can be a great aspect of having close connections with a recruiter. In addition, depending on the recruitment company, a recruiter can be a great source for advice on what your next career step should be, provide commentary on your CV, help you with interview preparation and explain in more detail the environment & nature of the position.
Social Media & Newsletters
Follow recruitment companies on LinkedIn and other social media sites (of course, only if they actively post anything!). On LinkedIn, you can find the recruiters on a recruitment company’s page, connect with your sector’s specialist recruiter. It’s great having a recruiter as a connection on LinkedIn. You can see new opportunities in your market as soon as they come in.
Corvus’ Social Media Platforms to follow
When you get an interview with a company, do you know how to prepare? If not, why not read our post on how to prepare for an interview. If you are interested in a career advice and need to talk to one of our specialist recruiters, please send your CV and details to firstname.lastname@example.org.