A Continuous Job Search? It’s the New Reality.
By James Greenway on January 2, 2014
Whether you’ve just landed a new job or been with your company for 10 years, a move to another position is undoubtedly in your future. Keeping pace in today’s job market requires career agility—the ability to adapt to changing circumstances, identify opportunities, maintain employment marketability, commit to ongoing networking, and display social media acumen—all in an effort to heighten preparedness for what comes next.
Typically, job candidates fall into two distinct categories: active and passive. An active job seeker is usually defined as someone who is currently unemployed and looking for a job. Active job seekers may be pursuing positions through a variety of search strategies: posting resumes, networking through industry and professional groups, creating an Internet footprint through social media sites and smartphone apps, attending job fairs, setting job alerts, etc. Passive candidates, on the other hand, are individuals who are employed—often happily—and not necessarily interested in changing jobs. Still, they are generally open to receiving inquiries from recruiters and hiring managers.
Today, however, the line between passive and active job seekers is not quite as clear. LHH research reveals that the search for passive candidates is a significant component in an organization’s talent acquisition strategy; therefore, even a passive candidate should be actively managing his or her online presence. As noted in Careerbuilder’s 2013 Candidate Behavior Study, “The days of passive versus active job seekers are nearly obsolete. The digital landscape has made the job search process similar to the ‘always on’ consumer buying behavior.”
The following questions are based on the challenges many individuals face when they lose a job and will help you determine if you’re adequately prepared for today’s new reality of being in a continuous job search. See if you can answer yes:
- Is your resume up-to-date and ready to go (including specifics related to your present position)?
- Are your social media profiles current and do you regularly participate in on-line discussions to broaden your influence and increase your visibility?
- Is your skill set diverse and currently in demand? If not, are you taking steps to fill the gaps?
- Have you set job alerts for major job boards?
- Do you work your network—suggesting ideas, sending articles of interest, extending congratulations, providing endorsements, etc.?
- Have you kept yourself informed on your local job market? Do you know what organizations are hiring, downsizing, outsourcing, expanding, moving, etc.?
- If your dream job became available, would you able to apply for it immediately?
A continuous job search is the new reality. Organizations are counting on agile employees who can move into new roles quickly. So whether you’re moving up, moving out, moving on, or simply staying put, preparedness is the key.
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