Step 5 – Develop your toolkit

Now that you feel clear about your job search strategy and have a better idea about the types of roles you’re interested in applying for, it’s important to make sure that your online profiles, CVs, Cover Letters and LinkedIn profile are all consistent. They must all tell the same story and present you as a professional who is capable of doing the role you’re applying for. Remember, most recruiters and employers check you out on socials as part of the recruitment process.

Your Job Search toolkit should contain these key documents:

Network Tracker – a document containing contact details of key recruiters/industry professionals who you have identified through your research process. For example, when you look at job ads in your professional field you can take note of the individual recruiter’s name and email/phone number and add this to the Networking Tracker. At the same, time, you can identify individuals on LinkedIn who are doing similar jobs to the ones you’re seeking or who may be in more senior positions and who you may want to connect with either now or in the future. Be careful when sending a connection request on LinkedIn. You should think carefully about what you want from the person and how you want them to help you. Most people will be happy to connect with you to offer you advice or feedback but they need you to be clear and concise as they won’t have much time for someone they don’t know. One way to build a connection is to view their recent activity and either send them an interesting related article or ask them a relevant industry-related question. To build your network further, identify relevant student/professional organisations related to your profession and sign up to their newsletters & events or ask to volunteer at events or even become part of a Committee. This will help you to learn who’s who in the industry and get access to key players who have contacts. 

Different versions of your CV and Cover Letter – one of the most important factors in finding a job these days is getting your application sent through quickly. This means you need to have prepared different versions of your CV and Cover Letter for each of the types of positions you’re interested in. While this sounds time-consuming, it doesn’t have to be. You just need to understand how to read a Position Description and the Key Selection Criteria. After you receive your improved CV, Cover Letter and LinkedIn profile as part of your Commit to your Career – Success Pack, it may just require you to change a few elements within the CV and Cover Letter, based on the specific position description.

Key Selection Criteria (KSC) – for some jobs it’s essential to respond to the Key Selection Criteria. This can be a time consuming activity so make sure that before you start writing you really meet all the criteria. It can be a good idea to contact the recruiter/employer to introduce yourself and present what you offer. You can ask if they recommend you apply. To help you prepare your Key Selection Criteria document, take a look at the example below. You simply need to create a table with the each of the KSC listed and then add some information describing your experience giving real examples. Make sure to review the English for accuracy before submitting this as part of your application. 

LinkedIn Profile – when you create your LI profile you should make sure it is professional and includes a neutral, professional headshot, a headline with key words related to your studies/industry and related to your next role and a summary that speaks to the job you want in your next role and key achievements. Your information should be consistent with what’s on your CV and should include key words that match the profile of a job you want. Make sure to research people who influence or inspire you in your industry, it can give you great ideas about how you want to present yourself to others. Also, keep your LI profile up to date by including events you attend, certificates of any professional development and written recommendations from former employers, if possible.

Common Interview Questions – when you submit your CV or job application you should expect to receive a phone interview or a request for a proper video/face-to-face interview. This means you should be fully prepared to present yourself, talk about your story i.e. how you’ve got to where you are today and respond to questions about any aspect of any activity you’ve mentioned in your CV or Cover Letter. To prepare yourself effectively, write some notes or answers to these common interview questions and if possible, record yourself to hear how you sound. If you have an accent you may need to speak slightly slower to help the person listening understand every single word.

To help you feel confident each time you communicate with a recruiter/employer/manager, refer to the Email Templates as these can help you always use 100% accurate and professional business language.