City : WorkSearch Hub : Tips & Info

WorkSearch Hub


Job hunting is tough and you need to have a tactic when you are doing it to make sure that you are making the most of your time. Here are our suggestions on how to be a really efficient job hunter!


Top Tips:

  1. Focus your applications
  2. Don’t let the rejections get you down
  3. Set yourself goals
  4. Be realistic
  5. Be flexible
  6. Stay positive: for more advice on how to do this visit our Motivation Turbine
  7. Don’t just use the internet:less than one in five jobs are advertised on the internet so try more than one method.
Criminal Record: It is important to know what information is stored on you and how having convictions can affect your search for work. In many cases this is an issue that a potential employer will deal with you personally but there are some general facts and guidelines that you should be aware of. The Disclosing Convictions page on the goverment website has all the relevant information. This guide from Nacro provides a detailed guide on how to make a strong job application if you have past convictions.
Below we've broken down the different ways of job hunting and shown you the advantages and the disadvantages of each method, and most importantly how to make the most of it.
  • Job Sites


    • Quick and easy to put your profile and CV online.
    • Wide coverage and there’s often a range of options.
    • Recruiters often check these sites and you can get on their books this way.
    • If you a specialised skill set, it is easy to make this stand out.


    • Low hit-rate: employers receive hundreds of applications this way so it’s hard to stand out.
    • Some Job sites double up or advertise positions that have already been filled in order to boost their online presence.

    How to make the most of it: keep updating and sending off a couple of applications a day.

    Websites you can use:

    1. Universal Job Match: The government run job site. It has probably the best coverage of entry-level jobs and features many opportunities not listed elsewhere.
    2. Indeed UK: The UK's largest job 'metasite'. It displays job listings from numerous other job boards allowing you to access up to 70% of online job ads from one place.

    There are loads more job search websites around, for a breakdown of sites by job sector area go on up to the Third Floor.

  • Company Websites Direct Applications


    • This is great if you know exactly what companies you want to apply to.
    • Going directly through the applications on the website can show that you are really enthusiastic about joining that specific company.
    • Fewer applicants come through this route so you are more likely to stand out.


    • Smaller companies won't advertise on their website, but in these cases they may advertise in the local press so keep an eye out.
    • You will have to register for each company separately so it takes longer.

    How to make the most of it: combine these types of applications with generic JobSearch websites. Know how they recruit, do they recruit directly or do they use specific recruitment agencies?

  • Friends and Family Contacts


    • This can be one of the best ways of getting a job. By hearing about an opportunity through friends and families you may hear about something that hasn’t been publicly advertised yet!
    • By having a personal reference for your application it is often taken more seriously. But don't think you can simply get a job this way; you will have to go through the application process as well!


    • Some family and friends may need to be prompted to help and you have to be careful, you don't want to push too hard and upset the people close to you.
    • This method depends so much on timing and sheer luck, so absolutely do not make it your only source of opportunities.

    How to make the most of it: Make sure your friends and family working in the relevant jobs or companies know that you are job hunting AND that they know how good you are. Don’t reject contacts that you make, you never know when they might be in a position to help you.

  • Professional Networking Sites: LinkedIn


    • Everyone who is anyone is on LinkedIn, there are 130 million members worldwide and growing, so you can use this to connect with people that othwerwise may be hard to get in touch with. 
    • It has its own job matching service and sends you alterts when relevant vacancies go up.


    • Don't forget that employers may look at this as part of an application so make sure there are no mistakes on your profile and that you present yourself as professional and capable.

    How to make the most of it: Make sure you think about how you come across online, be professional! Add individuals who work in the company that you want to work in. This can be a great way of raising your profile with them.

  • Social Media: Twitter

    How to use it: follow news stories, job opportunities and companies that you want to work for.

    How not to use it: Do not use it to send embarrassing photos of yourself or to attack anyone, remember this is a public site and once it has gone up it won't go away!

    There is some great advice about using Twitter from the BBC and Mashable.

  • Social Media: Facebook

    How to use it: join groups linked to the careers that you are interested in. You can get loads of useful information from these groups and from other candidates.

    How not to use it: do not use it to send embarrassing photos of yourself or to attack anyone. Think about who can see your posts - you can alter your privacy settings on Facebook but the default option is public. Before you start applying make sure that you take down any photos of you doing anything you shouldn’t or photos that you don’t think an employer would like to see. 

    There is some great advice about using Facebook from the BBC and Mashable.

  • Recruitment Agencies


    • These are usually free to join as the agent only takes a fee when they've placed you in a job.
    • Above all this means that you aren't on your own job hunting as you have someone to help you look for jobs.
    • The agency may have access to more opportunities than you as they will have connections with employers and businesses.


    •  Their fee will come out of your future salary if they place you in a job.
    • There is no guarantee that they will find you something and they will have a lot of people on their books.

    How to make the most of it: There is nothing to stop you joining a few agencies (about 3 or 4 if you can). Follow up regularly to remind them that you are looking for something. Make sure that you join an agency which recruits for the area you are interested in. (There is no point joining an agency that feeds into IT and Technology if you actually want to go into Care work). 

  • Fact-to-Face Networking

    See the section in the Career Climbing Pastures and the support on the National Careers Service Website.

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