1. Mega Websites /// Alright so we all know them, the big boys of the industry that pull in candidates by the hundreds, even thousands. Most of the organizations that publish job listings on these websites are looking for a big pool of candidates and are large companies themselves.
So how do you navigate around these big websites? Well for starters, look in a different area. What I mean is search for suburbs around the major city where you want to work. For example, I put in my resume for organizations in Marietta, Roswell, Woodstock which are suburbs of Atlanta. These jobs are less searched and therefore less applied for which increases your odds of getting seen.
Amazingly enough my new job actually came from a resume that I submitted on careerbuilder in Marietta. However, that being said, my new employer still scanned through about 50 resumes that were submitted in the course of a single week. (Just imagine how many an organization in downtown Atlanta scans through!) Another big thing to make you stand out, always, I mean always write a personal cover letter. It is super important to let the person know who is sifting through the resumes, that you are a real person who is really interested.
(Side Note: The nationally known businesses like Lowe's, Chick-fil-a, Verizon and the like who post on these websites actually have filters build into their software to sift through the resumes. If your resume doesn't have enough of the key words found in the job's description, no actual person will ever see your resume at all.)
2. Staffing Agencies /// To be honest my knowledge on staffing agencies is limited. They do exist and my cousin works for one, but they are not all that they are cracked up to be. Most staffing agencies are seeking out potential clients on their own, so coming to them is not always the best option. That being said, I did not use them on my job hunting journey.
3. Built In Network /// If you are job searching and you do not have a profile on LinkedIn, run not walk and get one now. And while you are at it and if you can, pay the $30 a month charge for a job seekers account. Why is that important? For one, your profile shows up a different color. The different color indicates you are a job seeker and staffing agencies can find you, as well as you have more access to job searching specifics. Now having a different color won't get you a job, but reaching out to your connections that you have, will. I reached out to several people who were currently employed at organizations that had job openings that I found interesting. Once I messaged them on LinkedIn, I connected with them on the phone to ask them about the working environment and how they liked their job. Subsequently, they sent my resume on to Human Resources for me, instead of me applying directly online. This is huge, it always helps to have someone from inside the organization already vouching for you then some unknown person on the internet.
4. Local Chamber /// I spent one long, unpaid summer working at my local chamber of commerce as a communications intern. I learned a whole lot, but none of that really matters to you except most local county chamber of commerces have a job listings page. It isn't always easy to find, I mean like eight clicks into their website sometimes, but almost all chambers have them. I actually turned down a position that I found on my local chambers job board that wanted me.
5. Circles of Influence /// Everybody and their mom needs to know you are searching for a job (on the DL if you currently have one and don't want to get fired). It is super important that everybody knows that you are search, because in turn while you are searching they are searching too.
True stories: A friend of a friend emailed me with a job at her company, because my friend had told her that I was searching for a job. Another friend's husband submitted my resume to his organization for an open position. A family friend called my mom to say that she found a great job for me. A former boss became my cheerleader to the hiring manager (who she previously worked with) to get me in at a particular job.
All that being said, good people have your back. So tell them that you are actively looking and jobs that are not posted out to the world could be coming just to you.
The items listed above are ideas that I have thought through and actions that I have taken on my own personal job search. I hope that they might help you expand your search a little more and get you one step closer to your dream career. However, it does no good to apply if you resume is lacking, so that will be the next topic up for discussion!