As expected and commonplace as the sun rising every morning, job searching is an inevitable part of living in a capitalistic society.
While there are many benefits to being part of this type of society, the one downside is that you need to work for a living. And the market right now is cut-throat. Jobs are contracting even as demand increases, making it harder than ever to break into the field of accounting and do something you want to do.
However, that doesn’t mean you should give up. In fact, you may be making it harder for yourself than it needs to be because of the following common misconceptions about job searching.
- Job postings only
You may be unexpectedly gimping yourself if you find yourself searching for jobs solely through job postings. Indeed, according to Duncan Mathison, the co-author of the 2009 book Unlock the Hidden Job Market, around nearly half of jobs are filled on a completely informal basis.
What does this mean? Simply put, it indicates that someone was hired into the job without it ever being advertised, and usually based on the choice of an internal candidate. This hidden job market that you’re missing out on could hide the secrets to the perfect position you’re looking for.
However, this implies that you must network. It’s not fun, but making friends and connecting with people in the industry where you’re looking for employment is the absolute best way to find these hidden jobs and break in.
- Taking the first offer
Another thing that may be easier to avoid than it is to say to avoid, is to not accept the first job offer that is extended to you. After all, why would you want to go through the grueling hiring process all over again if you’ve already landed a job?
However, just because it’s easy doesn’t mean you should do it. You should evaluate each offer carefully, examining whether it adds significant value to your resume and whether it’s moving you in the right direction.
Why be stuck in a dead-end job when there are so many more opportunities waiting for you out there?
- Underplaying the cover letter
Resumes are typically the focus when it comes to searching for employment. They contain all you need to know about your skills and qualifications, and they are definitely something an employer looks at.
Plus, it’s fun to experiment with them, with the growing array of video resumes, infographics, and online portfolios playing a significant role in boosting your profile.
However, just as important and often overlooked is the cover letter. Also known as a letter of introduction, the cover letter is an absolutely vital part of your job search strategy.
You can really get colourful here, stretching your wings and flexing some of your writing skills to tell the most important story: who you are, why you’re here, and what made you the perfect hire they’re looking at today.
With a good cover letter, you can expect your resume to be looked at even more carefully, thus giving you the edge needed to get into the interview stage and make an even better impression on the employer.
- The single-page resume
It’s been an often-parroted piece of advice that you should always, always, always keep your resume at just a single page.
However, this rule is a bit more flexible than you may realize. While pretty much every expert would agree that you should keep things brief, it also doesn’t mean you should cut things that prove your worth.
For instance, you shouldn’t leave out your achievements and/or completed projects if they significantly boost your qualifications. In fact, if your resume is just a single page, you may find that they take you less seriously owing to a perceived dearth of experience.
So, don’t make this deathknell mistake for your employment chances.
- Networking is (NOT) key
“But wait,” you ask, “Didn’t you just say earlier that networking and knowing people is key?” We did say that, but like much of life, there are many more nuances to things than you’d expect.
It’s true that it will definitely help to network and know someone at the company you’re interviewing at.
Often, however, this won’t affect your chance of getting selected by a significant margin. Sure, having insight into the company could give you an edge, but most employers won’t just hire you based on a wing and a prayer.
In fact, the recruiter will likely be careful not to hire you just for your personal connection. Personal connections cannot carry you alone. At the end of the day, you still need to be a hireable candidate with relevant job experience and insights that you can bring to the company.
After all, why would an employer invest a bunch of money into someone who turns out to just be a dead weight? They’ll choose you if you prove that you’re capable. Then, when you prove that, they’ll keep you on, and your true climb up the mountain of career success will begin.
There’s much to think about when it comes to job searching, and we hope that this article helped answer enough questions for you to come at things with a fresh angle and a joie de vivre.
Job searching is an incredibly demoralizing activity. It’s not fun, it consumes a lot of time, and it can be painful to be rejected time and time again from amazing jobs that you’d love to give your time and energy to.
Still, that doesn’t mean you should give up. Even 1000 losses don’t matter at all in the face of a single shining victory—and you will get there, if you haven’t already. However, if you want to streamline things and lessen the pain of sending out resumes without a response, why not try employing the services of an excellent recruiting firm like AHK Accounting Recruiters? We offer accounting recruitment in Toronto, and can be reached at 855-630-0383 or via our contact page right here.