By Michelle Wanjiku
If you have been looking for a job this year with no success, it could be because you are not going about it the right way.
As the year comes to an end, it is time to look at your job search strategy and see what more you could do to get that dream job come 2019.
In this article, see some of the job search mistakes that you need to stop making come next year if you want to get a job.
Mistake #1: Applying for jobs you are not qualified for
There is a big difference between being unqualified for a position and being under-qualified.
You are unqualified if you meet less than 20% of the qualification requirements and are under-qualified if you meet around 80% of the requirements for a specific job.
This means that when you are applying for a position you need to look at the job description carefully and be truly honest with yourself. If you are missing a majority of the requirements then there is no need for you to waste time and resources applying for it.
However, if you are only missing let’s say two or three of the requirements then you can take a chance and apply for that position as long as they are not mandatory requirements.
So come next year, instead of wasting time and energy on jobs you have no hope of getting you should focus your attention on jobs you have a chance of actually getting.
Mistake #2: You are not applying for the job properly
When it comes to applying for a position, there is more to it than just sending in your CV. Most job descriptions you come across have instructions on how you should apply for this position.
Sadly, very few people actually follow these instructions. Things like what the email subject or reference should be, what to send and what to include in your application are some of the instructions that can be given in when applying for a job.
According to Cynthia Wangeci, a recruitment manager at Corporate Staffing Services, there is a reason why an employer will ask you to attach a certain number of CVs, put your salary expectations in your application or how to address your application.
This means that failure to do so will automatically remove you from the list of possible interview candidates. Don’t assume that it’s not important. If the employer asked you to send three copies of your CV, don’t send one. If they asked you to have a certain subject line, stick to it.
Remember, employers receive a lot of applications and they cannot go through all of them, so they will start reducing the number they have to go through by trashing all applications from people who didn’t follow instructions.
Mistake #3: Not thinking through your applications
You should not be applying for jobs just for the sake of it or because you like the title and salary. Before applying for any job, you need to really think it through. How will this affect your career, is the job right for you, will it help you achieve your goals?
When you apply for a job just because you want a new job, your lack of passion for the position will become evident during your interview and the employer will pick someone else.
Not only that but applying for jobs you have no interest in slows down your career development. You also don’t want to apply for a job that requires you to move when you are not ready for it.
Mistake #4: Attending interviews unprepared
I recently sat in an interview, where the candidate came in with no CV or portfolio; the first thing the interviewer asked was why she didn’t have her CV.
In the mind of the interviewer, she was already disqualified, it didn’t matter what else she said during the interview, and even if she was a good candidate she had ruined her chances by coming into the interview unprepared.
You don’t want to ruin your chances of getting a job come next year just because you did not prepare well. This means you need to be ready for the questions, you need to have all your necessary documents arranged in an orderly manner and you need to look put together.
When it comes to your CV it is always safer to carry a few copies just in case you find it is a panel interview. This will also show that you are organized which will help you impress the interviewer.
When it comes to job hunting any advantage you can get will help boost your chances of getting a job. This means avoiding any of these common mistakes that other people are making. Doing this will greatly improve your odds at finding a job.
Michelle is a Communications Officer/Digital Marketer at Career Point Kenya. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org