Some job hunters make the mistake of waiting until they need to apply for their next job to prepare themselves for the search. But there are things you can do right now to ready yourself for the process, even if you’re happy in your current position or not ready to start applying. To prepare for a job search in advance and avoid scrambling to put together the perfect application at the last minute, try the following:
– Know and maintain your credit rating. Many employers will check your credit before they hire you, and you’ll need to be able to explain any problems with it to them before they do. Since you’re preparing for your job search well in advance, you may even have time to improve your credit rating if you need to.
– Get to know the companies you might apply to. Spend a little time browsing the websites of companies in your industry so that you understand who they are and what they need. You can even reach out via LinkedIn or other network connection to scope out what things are like for people who work there.
– Drop your negativity. Negative thoughts, whether they’re about the job market, the economy, your job, or other things, can eat away at your confidence and make you less likely to get hired. Starting pruning them away now to make yourself a better candidate later.
– Prepare for the realities of a new job. Getting a new position might mean hiring child care or preparing a home office. It will almost certainly mean avoiding asking for any time off for a while. So get all your appointments taken care of and make a plan to deal with the logistics of getting a new job.
– Get your job search materials ready. In addition to updating your resume, put together your interview materials, like an address book and transcripts, and review your wardrobe to make sure you have interview-appropriate clothes.