10 things to do now to get ready for a new job

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Although coming to the decision that you’re ready for a new job is a big step, translating that decision into the reality of finding a new role with a new employer can still seem a frustratingly long way off. But to give you the reassurance that things are moving in the right direction, here are ten things you can be doing – starting from now...

  1. Write your ideal job description - You know you want to move on… but move on to what? Have a go at drafting a job description for your ideal role. Factor in your strengths and areas of interest, and think about the areas you like or dislike about your current role. Use this ideal description to inform your job search. 

  2. Put out feelers in your network  - Ask around among trusted contacts about interesting employers, valuable information sources and the most effective recruiters. This will give you ideas for companies to research online and follow socially, and recruiters you may want to contact. It may even turn up some interesting opportunities. 

  3. Sign up for alerts and newsletters - Think about the best sources of new job information in your industry, and make sure you’re signed up for all relevant alerts and newsletters. Many sites allow you to tailor a search by relevant criteria such as travel distance and salary band, and receive notifications of new relevant opportunities.

  4. Start updating your knowledge - Now is also a good time to make sure you’re on top of trends in your industry, regulatory developments, technological changes and so on. Identify a few key publications that you can trust to keep you really informed, and make a point of looking at them regularly. Now is also a good time to start paying more attention to current affairs too, so you can be as well-informed as possible come interview time. Think especially about the impact of key news stories on your industry. 

  5. Set aside some daily search time
    Set aside a small amount of time each day to dedicate to your new job search, and draw up a list of things you want to do every day. This will typically include looking at LinkedIn, checking key job sites, and reading the latest news from key industry publications.

  6. Maximise your LinkedIn presence - The greater your engagement on LinkedIn, the more visible your digital presence. Follow companies and connect with recruiters in sectors and industries that interest you, and use the Alumni search tool to reach out to valuable connections. Also, look to update your LinkedIn status frequently with engaging insights and links, and post relevant articles to boost your profile views.

    Ensure your profile is up to date and worded to maximise your appeal to potential new employers, complete with a recent photo and details of all your latest experience and expertise. You can also ask contacts to endorse you for skills and leave testimonials.

  7. Take up opportunities at your current job that will boost your appeal to a new employer - There are lots of things you can do in your current job that could also stand you in good stead in your job search. To boost your personal brand online, for example, offer to write blogs and other thought leadership content on behalf of your company. To enhance your skill set, look to take up any suitable training or development opportunities on offer. And be ready to take on new responsibilities or new areas of work that you can add to your profile.

  8.  Widen your skill set - Learning something new to add to your CV is always a good idea, particularly if you’re looking for a job that’s slightly different to what you do now, or if you’re worried about a potential gap in your skill set. There’s a wealth of online courses, tutorials and evening classes out there, much of them free. Find out what might be relevant to the job you’re looking for and start learning… 

  9. Refresh your CV - If you’ve been working in the same role for years, there’s a chance you haven’t opened your CV file too recently. Make sure to update it before applying for new jobs. Add in all your relevant experience, extra courses you’ve undertaken and other skills you might have developed recently. 

  10. Talk to a recruiter - With their in-depth knowledge of your market and of recruitment trends, a good recruiter can be a mine of useful information, about everything from salary expectations to skills requirements to job hunting tips. Set up a few informal exploratory calls with recruiters that look like a good fit. 

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