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Am I making job hunting mistakes?

By: Aquent

LAST UPDATED: April 7, 2023

If you are struggling to land your dream job, it’s easy to lose momentum and feel like giving up. It’s important to consider your process and make adjustments if necessary. Here are a few common job hunting mistakes you might be making and should try to avoid.

1. Relying on job boards

Around 70% of jobs are never advertised, so focussing on job boards when looking for a new role is not necessarily the best strategy. It can be far easier to get a job through your own network. Use online platforms like LinkedIn to search for 2nd degree connections that could be beneficial to your search. Don’t be afraid to approach relevant people for advice or ask if they can introduce you to someone else who can help.

After recruitment agencies, companies find the most successful resource for finding Talent is their own network or social media. Source: Office for National Statistics

2. Thinking you don’t have the right experience

Believing you don’t fully fit the criteria for a role can stop you from even applying. It’s important to remember that job ads simply reflect an employer’s dream candidate. Your experience should be a good match for the role but it doesn’t have to be a perfect fit. Highlight your transferable skills as well as technical abilities. And don’t forget to mention why you want the job, enthusiasm and passion can go a long way!

3. Not following up

Even if your interview didn’t go as well as you’d hoped, you should still follow up afterwards. It’s important to keep yourself front of mind because if you don’t get the job this time, there may be other opportunities in the future. Call and ask for feedback, send your interviewer a thank you note and connect on LinkedIn. When the next job comes up, and it could happen sooner than you think, it’s your name they’re going to remember.

4. Being afraid to negotiate

Conditions like hours and pay can be deal-breakers. Just as candidates don’t tick every box for employers, jobs won’t always be the perfect fit for you. If you want to work part-time but the job you’ve applied for is full-time, ask if they would consider the option to work from home. Flexibility is a high priority for many employees and companies know this, so don’t be scared to negotiate.

5. Becoming disheartened

It’s easy to let setbacks knock your confidence. If you don’t get the job you wanted, try not to get too down about it. It could turn out to be a blessing in disguise. Reflect on what you’ve learned and use it next time.

If you are looking for more job hunting tips and tricks, then check out our Getting a Job Guide. Everything you could want to know about creating the perfect CV & portfolio, as well as interviewing tips and finding a mentor. It's free to download here