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Job Hunter's Guide Course
Introduction | Assess | Prepare | Search | Contact | Interview | Maintain


Step Four: Contact Employers

It is now time to contact employers and this is done in four ways: phone calls, letters (including emails), application forms and direct internet applications.

Upon completion of this section:

  1. You will be able to Contact Employers effectively
  2. Be able to prepare a Cover Letter and work application
  3. Be able to carry out phone interviews and screenings

Basic Phone Guidelines

The telephone is an essential tool for job hunting. Whether you make the call or receive it, your phone manner can help you get--or keep you from getting--a job. Below are Do's and Don't's regarding phone guidelines.

Do's

Don't''s


Phone Interviews and Screenings

Phone interviews give employers the chance to see if you are qualified, articulate and truly interested--and worth inviting to meet face-to-face.


Cover Letter

A cover letter is an introduction, a sales pitch and a proposal for further action and is one of your most valuable tools for contacting employers.

Goal

Types of Letters

Prep Work


Cover Letter Guidelines

There are guidelines to make your cover letter a success.   Below are Cover Letter Do's and Don't's.

DO's

DON'T's


Application Form

Application forms, once only for entry-level or high-turnover jobs, are now common for all positions. Below are some work application guidelines to follow:


Problem Work History

If you have gaps in your employment history or other potential problems know how to put a positive spin on your past. Below are Potential Barriers and the Possible Solutions:

Potential Barrier: Job Hopping
Possible Solution: Group similar jobs on résumé; don't include every job you've ever held

Potential Barrier: Long Time with One Employer
Possible Solution: List promotions as different positions; have a Professional Development section to highlight your ongoing education

Potential Barrier: Recent Employment Gaps
Possible Solution: List volunteer, community work, projects, family activities and education while unemployed

Potential Barrier: Been Fired
Possible Solution: During the interview, take responsibility for your actions and/or put the situation in positive light, depending on the circumstances

Potential Barrier: Been Laid Off
Possible Solution: Focus on the present to show that you're moving on

Potential Barrier: Not Enough Experience
Possible Solution: Emphasize adaptable skills and non-work experience

Potential Barrier: "Overqualified"
Possible Solution: Don't include information may raise red flags; emphasize eagerness to work at the job in question; show that you'll stay

Potential Barrier: No College Degree
Possible Solution: If you have some college credits, list the college without a graduation date; emphasize recent training, including workshops

Potential Barrier: Criminal History
Possible Solution: Remember that only convictions matter, also avoid occupations related to any felony you might have (e.g., if you stole, don't try to work with money)

Potential Barrier: Disability
Possible Solution: Address the issue head on and openly state that you have the ability to overcome any challenges your condition may pose

Potential Barrier: Poor Grades
Possible Solution: Focus on extracurricular activities or how you addressed your academic problem


Job Hunting Online

Internet has sped up traditional job hunt processes.

Now is a good time to review these processes and find how the internet can help.


Follow Up

Follow up shows your interest, your initiative and your sense of responsibility--qualities that employers love! The follow up guidelines below will help you land a job:


Thank You Notes

Thank You Notes are another great follow up tool. However most people do not use them.   Below are some Thank You Note guidelines:


Completion of Contact. Continue to the next section or any other section.

Introduction | Assess | Prepare | Search | Contact | Interview | Maintain

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