Job Searching Hints and Tips

Being a Recruiter in the Design space during the Coronavirus outbreak, I have seen a lot of people unfortunately lose their jobs, struggle to find freelance work and become unsettled or unhappy in their current positions for a number of different reasons. We are now faced with a candidate heavy market with a lot less jobs coming through. meaning the competition for new roles is naturally fierce. Due to this I wanted to put together a short piece of advice that others within the industry have found useful when finding a new role.

Although this down time may seem like a lot of peoples worst nightmare, it is the perfect opportunity to update and polish your portfolio that you’ve been meaning to do for months, now you have no urgent deadlines to meet. For Design roles your portfolio is key to grabbing a hiring managers attention, being able to put across some flare and personality into an application and to help showcase your best skills. This is also a great time to tailor your portfolio to the roles you are applying for. For example if you are keen to move into the Fintech space however have no prior experience you can add in a personal project covering this to increase your chances against competition.

Applying for new roles can soon feel like your new full time job, which is why I feel it is important to set aside specific time each day to do this rather than let it consume you and become your new existence. Create a time slot within the day that suits you personally and dedicate this to applying to roles; more focused time applying will help to ensure they are positions that suit your experience and future career goals, therefore hopefully increasing success. Also, explore the different resources that are available and allow you to set up job alerts such as: LinkedIn Jobs section, Otta, Indeed, Job Search. With a bleak market I think it can be easy to apply for anything and everything — which is totally understandable — however I do believe that focusing your time specifically on roles suitable for you and that you actually want is much more beneficial and also more motivating.

As well as directly applying for positions, I believe that networking is a massive part of any focused job search and that you should be setting aside a time period each day, which suits you, to work on this element. Networking isn’t specifically one thing and can be frequently changed up to keep it interesting and relevant. This could be in the form of growing your own LinkedIn network, this is a great way to reach out to recruiters and directly to hiring managers, although do make sure your profile is completely up to date prior to this. Building a relationship with a recruiter you trust and who understands your experience and desired next steps can be key when searching for a new role.

Keeping up to date with industry news through live talks and articles, can also help to keep your finger on the pulse when out of work and helps to keep that sense of community you may be missing out on. Also, take this time to explore different companies and their work and team to help you to understand what the ideal next steps for you are.

Keeping time for yourself is the most underrated and easily lost element in any job search. It is so easy to get consumed with looking for something new and for it to become your whole life however remembering to keep time for yourself is so important. Keeping time for things you enjoy doing and that take your mind away from your current situation such as: reading a book, getting creative, exercising or just as simple as watching a trashy series on Netflix will help your mind to switch off. This will in turn help you to keep a fresh and positive mindset when coming back to your search.

Each person will have their own unique way to tackle the whirlwind that is looking for a new role dependent upon their own circumstances and preferences. With that said I hope that you have found this helpful and taken at least one thing away that you will try. If you are currently searching and would like further advice please do get in touch!💛

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Molly Jennings

I am a Senior Recruitment Consultant specialising in UX and Digital Product Design across the Netherlands. 🇳🇱