Looking for a job when unemployed can be a challenging experience, but it is also an opportunity to take a step back, reignite your passion for the tech industry and put in the time needed to take your IT career to the next level. If you’re aiming to find the right role as soon as possible, the best approach is to treat the search like your full-time job. With this in mind, here are some ways to stay productive and make the most of your time during the job search.
Take Time to Evaluate
It’s not uncommon for professionals in the IT industry to get too comfortable – after all, change can be scary – and as a result, their career path can stagnate. When job hunting, it’s important to re-evaluate your career and focus on self-improvement to ensure your next role is aligned with both skills and aspirations, as well as industry needs.
Think about where you would like your career to go in the future. What are you looking for in your next job? Are you still growing? Are you aligned with what the market wants? Are you presenting yourself in the right way? Along similar lines, if it has been a while since you last looked for a job or interviewed, consider which skills may need refreshing. Focus specifically on your CV and interview skills and if you feel they could use work, seek help from a mentor, read up on job search tips or get advice from a specialist recruiter.
Polish Your Tools
With the pressures and demands of full-time employment, many professionals neglect their CVs, LinkedIn profiles and interview skills. Being in between jobs provides a perfect opportunity to refresh these tools and ensure they are up to scratch. Besides the basics like formatting and checking details, take the time to update roles, and add any new achievements or professional development that you’ve undertaken.
Gain New Experience
When deciding what to do with time off between jobs, it’s important to keep in mind that experience doesn’t only come from employment roles. Consider gaining new experiences through volunteering, interning or working on personal projects. Not only does this help to develop new skills, but it demonstrates a commitment to growing and improving. Similarly, it’s important to remember that candidates don’t have to go straight into a full-time role. There are plenty of contracting or temping jobs available which can be a great way to fill career gaps and get a foot in the door to other roles.
One of the biggest thrills of the IT industry is its rapid evolution, which is why it is important to stay up to date even whilst not employed. Candidates should ensure that they stay in touch with any new changes, developments or industry innovations when between jobs. Not only will this help to demonstrate your understanding and commitment to the industry, but it will also help identify which of your skills need improving to stay relevant.
Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to keep your skills up-to-date with professional development opportunities such as training, webinars, independent study and coaching. In addition, recruiters have a finger on the pulse of all industry movements and will be able to advise on potential focal points.
Cultivate Your Network
A professional network is a valuable asset when it comes to searching for Auckland IT jobs as it can expand opportunities, provide references and allow candidates to build a personal brand. Consequently, rebuilding and nurturing that network is a fantastic use of time. Reconnect with past colleagues, attend industry events such as conferences and seminars, and make the most of LinkedIn and other social media platforms. The more connected candidates are, the more options they have when it comes to their job search.
Although job hunting whilst unemployed can be difficult, there are plenty of ways to use that time wisely and get yourself in the best possible position for your job search. If you’re looking for a new IT role, or would like more information on how we can help with navigating the IT recruitment process, don’t hesitate to get in touch today.