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Advice for the Unemployed Expand / Collapse
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Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 12:04 AM


Mr or Mrs. 500

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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Advice for the Unemployed


Best wishes,

Phil Factor
Simple Talk
Post #753983
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 3:36 AM


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One little thing I would add to this list -- get your own blog or a web site and write, let the Employers see that you are interested into the stuff (technology) you wrote in your CV.

Great advices mr. Factor


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"It takes 15 minutes to learn the game and a lifetime to master"
"Share your knowledge. It's a way to achieve immortality."


Post #754017
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 4:17 AM


Mr or Mrs. 500

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That is a great bit of advice, doc. One thing I'd add though, is that one must be careful never ever to criticize past employers, make tactless disparaging remarks, or describe one's inherent idleness or work-shy habits on the blog. Once a potential employer has seen the URL of your blog on the CV/resume, he/she will take it as an invitation to read it. It has got to give the same impression as your resume, CV and letter of application; and be consistent with it.

You may think that this is a glimpse of the flaming obvious, but I could regale you with true stories of occasions where candidates have put themselves at a disadvantage in interview because of their reckless blogging. (It would be wrong for a potential employer to reject an applicant before interview because of this, of course). This is one of the reasons I write under a 'pen-name'!



Best wishes,

Phil Factor
Simple Talk
Post #754032
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 4:27 AM
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Network

Every job I've found I learned about because of who I know. (I flatter myself that it's not WHY I got the jobs!)

Some companies prefer not to use agencies, because the markup is considerable, and when a company is just about start looking, if someone in that company can recommend someone, they'll often jump at the chance to keep the overheads down.

If nothing else, it opens yet more avenues for finding job prospects.

Oh, and really, really make sure your CV is perfect. In a tough market, employers are lookig for any excuse to pare down the list of interviews they have to do. e.g. writing 'Summery' instead of 'Summary' - Neither a spell checker nor a grammar checker will spot that in a title. And I've thrown out CVs with that error .... if you can't get your CV right, I don't want you messing with my code!
Post #754034
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 5:02 AM
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I have some involvement in redundancy councelling, and would add some other points...

Do not be surprised if you feel low or depressed. Most people find the disruption to their normal routine of going to work is unsettling.

Consider the process of finding paid work to be your current job. Work at it as hard as you would in a paid job. Do not expect your job search to be successful first time - remember that in a paid job manty things need a lot of re-work before they are successful.

Use different variations of your CV, and remember who has which version. Sending the same CV to all job sites and recruiters adds a risk that if something is not liked in your CV then it can affect everyone. Seriously consider having both a traditional cronological CV and a skills-based CV, as each type will appeal to a different audience. (Google can tell you more about these types of CV.) Make sure spelling and grammar are correct - employers cannot give every CV that lands on their desk full attention, and will often filter out people on very flimsy reasons such as poor spelling.

If you do find that looking for a job is getting to you, make sure you always have a reason to get up in the morning. You need to avoid getting into a rut where you start the day at 10AM or later - the late start in itself will tend to make you fel worse.


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Post #754042
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 5:23 AM


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I would add that you maintain your attendance, or start attending, social IT events, such as User Groups or shop-talk gatherings. It always amazes me how a casual conversation with someone can unearth opportunities.
Post #754048
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 6:09 AM
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User groups can be very helpful; we had 3 jobs come through our SQL user group in the last month. Also check with temp agencies, even short term work is better than no work and you might learn a new skill.
Above all keep your spirits up and work at finding a new job just like it is a job.
Post #754069
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 6:33 AM


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Treat your job hunting as a job in itself.

It's easy, when suddenly no-one else is around to push you, to let a day's breather turn into a week. Unfortunately, if you approach your job search in a lacksadaisical manner, you'll see the same quality of results as you would in any other project with that lack of commitment and effort.


Semper in excretia, sumus solum profundum variat
Post #754092
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 6:33 AM
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I've been on both sides of the hiring equation more than once. So here are my tips to the job seeker.

The first goal is to get a face-to-face interview. The screening process is designed to save employers time, a valuable resource these days. They often throw away resumes that are slightly off their specs to save time.

So your first goal is to get by the screening process and get an interview. Make up at least two electronic resumes, each tailored to a specific skill set. If you see an ad, make any modifications to the resumes to fit the skills they are looking for. Write a cover letter that covers each of the skills that they are looking for. Be careful, be sure you don't make typos or spelling errors. But get it in early.

Then get organized for the interview. If necessary, brush up on rarely used skills that they need. Bring a spare copy of your resume with you. It's surprising how often they get lost or damaged.

Study the company and try to be excited about it.

If all this sounds a little phony, it is. But it beats flipping burgers.



Post #754093
Posted Thursday, July 16, 2009 6:48 AM


Mr or Mrs. 500

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Never act on the assumption that potential employers will be biased against you for some reason. I once interviewed a guy with no qualifications at all, just because I sensed something gutsy about his CV, and I felt lucky. He turned up for interview slightly scruffy. I took him on, based on his obvious broad technical knowledge. He was the best darned programmer I ever had, and he went on to have a highly successful career.


Best wishes,

Phil Factor
Simple Talk
Post #754104
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