From finding opportunities and writing a new resume to adapting to workplace changes brought on by the pandemic and recovery, here is everything you need to know for a successful job search in 2022.
Finding a new job in 2022
So, it’s time to find a job. Whether you are looking for a new opportunity or your very first job, you’ve come to the right place. The best place to begin looking for career opportunities, job searching tools, and career advice – is online.
Because the web is a responsive media, information can be published and updated in real-time. This is important because you will want access to the latest job postings available when you are looking to get hired. (Although, we could make a case for applying to older job ads as well.)
It is similarly important to have access to the latest information about hiring trends, the job market in your region, and what employers are seeking. Labour force information, predictions, and advice that seem relatively recent can still be significantly outdated because the COVID-19 pandemic had such a dramatic impact on the economy and how employers and candidates interact over the last two years.
For example, there has been a massive increase in the use of online video messaging platforms for job interviews and meetings. Your location in proximity to the workplace is less of an asset to employers now, as more and more have embraced remote or hybrid working models for their staff. This also gives you a much broader range of positions that you could possibly apply for without the hassle of relocating, but it is also impacting wages and salary negotiations.
Here is your definitive guide to finding a job online in 2022.
Start with the online job boards
For a high-level one-stop-shop to look at the job market and who is hiring in your area, career websites and job boards are a great resource. These websites are the modern version of the Want Ads at the back of newspapers that people used to peruse for opportunities. The most compelling of them, like CareerBeacon, augment these job postings with career advice and tools to make your job search easier and more successful.
You can gain a great deal of valuable information from researching jobs posted online. Even jobs that do not appear to be the right fit can provide insights into which companies are hiring, which sectors appear to need the most employees, what the job market is like in your local region, and which positions or job titles are the most sought-after right now.
Online job ads for opportunities in your field can reveal the specific skillsets, qualifications, and experience that hiring managers request for the jobs you will be submitting applications. This information allows you to customize your resume to highlight the most relevant information employers seek.
Finding a job without experience
This critical step in resume writing stumps many first-time job seekers. How can I tailor my experience to the needs of the job when I don’t have any yet? It’s the classic job search Catch-22: How do I get a job with no experience when I can’t get experience without a job? This catch is why finding your first job is often the most challenging.
The answer, of course, is that you do have experience. Even if you have not worked professionally, you have gone to school, contributed to projects, and been part of a team. Focus on the occasions when you have shown determination, solved problems, helped other people, and made a difference. This experience can be academic, volunteer work, or other activities in your personal life.
Use your resume and cover letter to highlight your soft skills. Hiring managers are always looking for candidates who demonstrate a positive work ethic, have solid communications skills – and who can think on their feet, keep calm under pressure, and work well with others.
These attributes will serve you well at every level of your career, but they can be the key to getting hired, especially for entry-level positions.
Tell your story in your cover letter
You should always send a cover letter with your job application. It’s true that not all recruiters and hiring managers read cover letters, but many still do. Getting hired for a job is a competition between you and all other applicants. To succeed in a competitive environment, you want to give yourself every possible advantage. If an employer wants to read your cover letter, having included one sets you apart from all the candidates who didn’t.
Plus, your cover letter provides you with an opportunity to introduce yourself, your interest in the position, and your key selling point for the role. For a more seasoned candidate, this can be your most significant on-the-job accomplishment that is relevant to the employer’s needs. For first-time jobseekers this is more likely to be a strong statement about how motivated you are by the opportunity to contribute to the company. Employers value motivated candidates.
It doesn’t have to be long – a brief cover letter is best. Here is how to write a professional cover letter for your next job application in just six sentences.
Your cover letter is also an opportunity to demonstrate your soft skills. Since communication skills, good writing, and attention to detail are valued by employers, crafting a well-written, engaging, and error-free letter can show that you have these abilities.
For a successful job hunt in 2022, you will need to do your homework. Much of what separates candidates who get hired quickly from those who struggle to connect with employers is the amount of research they do.
The more you know about a company, the better your chances of convincing them to hire you. Employers prefer candidates who are motivated to work for them specifically over those applicants who are just trying to land a paycheque. You can demonstrate that you are the former by writing a resume that speaks to their needs and challenges. Highlight your skills and accomplishments that will be most relevant to the job they are hiring for. This attention to detail will allow you to stand apart from those candidates who simply apply with a generic, one-size-fits-all resume.
This same research will also come in handy during the job interview. One of employers’ biggest pet peeves is candidates showing up for a job interview with little or no knowledge of the company or what they do.
Read the company website. Search for news articles about them. Browse their social media feeds. Find out all that you can about the company, their leadership team, their products and services, their market, and their competition.
This research allows you to customize your job interview answers to be relevant to the company’s needs and enables you to ask smart questions about the organization and the job. Here are eight things you should know about an employer before a job interview.
You should also be prepared to talk about yourself. Most employers will ask you why you are looking for a new job. Whether or not they ask in so many words, they will also be looking to find out why you want to work for them specifically – and why they should hire you. Prepare thoughtful answers that convey this information in a conversational style. Here is how to answer the most challenging job interview questions.
Post-COVID, it is very likely your job interview will be an online video meeting. These became popular during the pandemic to limit face-to-face contact and the associated risk of spreading the virus. However, even with those concerns lessening, many organizations have realized that it is much easier and more efficient to arrange virtual job interviews than in-person meetings.
Find out how to ace your video job interview.
Know your worth
Another dreaded job interview question is being asked about your salary expectations.
Researching companies can also provide valuable insights into how well they pay. Some companies list salary ranges right in their job postings. There are still ways to determine how much compensation you should negotiate for those who do not.
Employer review websites such as Glassdoor.com offer employee-reported salary data for positions with specific companies. CareerBeacon offers several salary information tools that can help you, including the minimum wages for regions across the country, an income tax calculator, and a salary converter for comparing annual and hourly wages.
The Canadian government’s Job Bank Wage Report allows you to search jobs by Canadian locations and see what they pay on average – and, yes, location can make a pretty big difference.
Those regional discrepancies in wages are often reflective of the local costs of living. Keep this in mind if you live in an expensive region for housing, food, and transportation, but you are applying for a remote position with an employer located in a region with a lower cost of living. The wages they offer might not be sufficient for your lifestyle and location.
On the flip side, workers living further away from urban centres can often enjoy a pay boost by working remotely for companies situated in expensive downtown locations. However, as the trends of working from home and staff fleeing cities for the suburbs and rural regions spiked during the pandemic, some companies are adjusting their pay protocols. It is now more common for where you live to be a factor in your compensation and where the employer is located.
Researching the company may provide some details about their policies towards remote work and compensation as well.
Are you considering looking for a job in a region where you do not currently live? Being willing to relocate greatly increases the number of opportunities available to you. Plus, the rise of remote working arrangements means that moving might still be optional if you get hired for the job. Here are some strategies for finding a job in another city or province.
Write a professional resume
If you are new to the job search or have not applied for a job in several years – many people hunkered down and put their career ambitions on hold to wait out the pandemic – you will need to write a new resume.
Having researched employers and scanned the job boards for relevant positions, you should be ready to start writing. That information-gathering provides you with the insights you need about which skills and accomplishments to highlight to be most relevant to the employers you want to impress with your resume.
Many people think that the title of their resume should be their previous job title, the word Resume, or simply their name. Those are all wrong – surprisingly. The title of your resume should be the exact title of the job you are using it to apply for. This lets employers know which job you are submitting your candidacy for right off the bat.
Open your resume with a professional summary below the title and your contact information. This short paragraph has two to three sentences that create your elevator pitch for the job. Point out your top credentials or accomplishments that would make you a stand-out candidate for that specific role.
Follow this up with your work history in reverse chronological order. Analyze the details of the job ad you are applying for carefully so that you can tailor your resume to demonstrate how you are a good fit for the position. Clearly showcase how you meet the job requirements and, whenever possible, closely match the wording and language used in the job ad in your resume.
Other than demonstrating how you have the required on-the-job experience, don’t use up a lot of space describing your routine duties at your previous jobs. People generally know what a sales rep, an editor, or a bookkeeper does daily. Employers really want to see how you stood out in the role – it is important to list your specific accomplishments in your past jobs.
Finally, list your education, training, and any certifications that you might have that can be relevant for the job. You can also include an ‘Essential Skills’ bullet point list if you have other relevant abilities that you did not mention earlier in the document. These can consist of languages spoken, software mastered, or different skills that can add value to your candidacy.
This is a good opportunity to include any relevant keywords from the job description that you wouldn’t otherwise have in your resume. Many employers use applicant tracking software to scan resumes for essential skills or credentials, and these programs may filter out applications that do not include the keywords they are looking for. So, including the right words and phrases can be vital to getting your resume seen by the actual hiring manager.
Fresh graduates may want to move their education right to the top of their resumes. If you have just earned your degree, you may not have much work experience, and your top selling point could be having the latest, most up-to-date instruction in your field. In this scenario, your accomplishments may also be academic or school-related.
Once you have graduated from college or university, it is no longer necessary to include your high school on your resume.
It comes down to customization. Your resume is a marketing document, making a pitch for your candidacy for a specific job. Whatever information bolsters that pitch the most should be showcased front and centre.
Need help getting started? Here is a guide to writing a professional resume in five easy steps.
Update your network
No matter how polished your resume is, it is easier to get hired for a new job when you have help. While company websites and job boards can provide you with a great deal of valuable information about job market conditions, there are still many jobs that are never publicly advertised. This is because employers value internal referrals and word-of-mouth from existing staff for potential new hires.
Let your network know when you are open to new opportunities or actively seeking a new job. You never know who in your circle might be hiring, working for a hiring company, or having a connection in their network who is looking for someone like you.
You may not know which of your friends, family members, or professional acquaintances has a connection to a company that would be an excellent fit for your career. That’s why it is a good idea to let them know what you are looking for at the outset of your job search.
Letting your network know you are open also gives a heads-up to those you may tap for your professional references when that becomes necessary later in the job search.
Update your online profiles
Over 90% of employers say that they will Google you. After you apply for a job with their organization, they will look you up online. So, when you are looking for a new job, it is important to peruse your online footprint.
First off, make sure the information about your career on the internet matches what you list in your resume. This is particularly relevant to your LinkedIn profile. If your work history, job titles, and timeline are different from those in your job application, employers may take it as a sign that something is fishy.
Because you are tailoring how you describe your work and accomplishments in your resume to the employer’s needs, the wording of your past job descriptions may not be the same on LinkedIn. However, the places you have worked and when you worked there should still match up.
Then make sure that nothing publicly visible on any of your other online profiles would hinder your prospects of getting hired. Obviously, excessive party pictures or angry political rants could scare off employers. But also watch out for misspelled words or poorly written posts that could cast your communication abilities in a poor light.
You can actually score points with employers by sharing relevant insights and information about your work industry. Here are some valuable tips on leveraging social media in your job search.
They say that finding a job is a full-time job. It’s true – getting hired takes a great deal of effort. It’s not always a fun job, either. On the bright side, you get to imagine all of the career options available and visualize what it might be like to work for various companies. It’s the start of a new adventure – a blank slate.
On the other hand, it will almost certainly involve some degree of rejection. You are unlikely to be interviewed for every job you apply for. In many cases, you won’t hear back from the employer at all. That’s bad practice on their part. Companies should at least acknowledge receipt of your application so that you know it went through okay, and they should thank you for your interest in working for them. It’s just good manners; however, many still don’t do this.
Even when you do land that interview, you still may face rejection. Canadians, on average, interview for four positions for every job offer they receive. (And that’s after applying for many, many more jobs to get those four interviews.) Here are some clues to watch for during a job interview that it is not going very well.
It is perfectly natural at some point while you are looking for a new job to feel your energy and enthusiasm start to fade. The rejection or even a simple lack of progress can take its toll on our spirits. But it is essential to stay motivated.
It is a job seekers’ market right now. New opportunities are opening up all the time. You will get hired. Plus, letting the job search get you down cause you to miss out on applying for opportunities, and it can also harm your chances of being hired for those you do apply for.
This is because employers prefer to hire upbeat, positive, confident candidates. If you are feeling dejected, you could fail to make the right impression on potential employers.
Every new opportunity you find online is a potential career journey, a new adventure. Enjoy the potential of endless possibilities. Stay optimistic and believe in yourself and your abilities. A positive attitude can be a valuable asset on a job hunt. Here are some ideas for staying motivated when the job search gets you down.
The best way to find a job
The best way to get hired for a new job is to focus.
Concentrate your efforts on the specific few opportunities that closely match your abilities and your ambitions. Applying for fewer jobs will allow you to take more time researching each employer and customizing your resume and cover letters for the jobs at hand. This approach will deliver far better results than simply spamming every job posted online with a generic application.
Then apply for those jobs with all the polish and professionalism you can muster. With your network of supporters watching out for relevant opportunities for you, an up-to-date resume tailored to the needs of each company and position, professional online profiles, and a positive attitude, you will be entering the job market with all of the advantages on your side.
Ready to get started? There are thousands of job opportunities posted on CareerBeacon right now.