There are many ways to job search but often when looking for work, we forget the simple ways that people have sought work, before the age of Internet and online-application forms. Here are some of the ‘other ways’ you can look for work.
- NETWORKING. It remains one of the most powerful and effective ways people get jobs in tough times. Word of mouth or a recommendation from a trusted friend/colleague can often get you an interview or meeting in a company ahead of other applicants. Always take time to attend social events, job fairs or Information sessions with companies. You can even ask for an Information Interview with a potential employer. This means you are not soliciting them for work but rather gathering information on the company for future applications.
- Generate WORD OF MOUTH. Tell everyone you might know that you are looking for work; talk to friends, family, neighbours, friendly strangers or acquaintances. Remember also to speak to your former employers, teachers, social workers or your employment counsellor. Someone you know might have heard about a ‘hidden’ job opportunity in your community.
- Go search in your community. Often referred to as ‘pounding the pavement’ this strategy is about getting out of the house and mapping out an area or neighbourhood and going shop to shop, business to business looking for HELP WANTED signs or responding to ads. When job searching, it is important to get off your computer, print off some resumes, put on a nice outfit and go outside looking for work. Whether you are going in person to hand out a resumes or to a specific store or company to fill out an application, the important thing is to make contact with employers.
- THINK LOCALLY. Seek out localized resources to find leads or hear of opportunities. Also take time to visit your Toronto Public Library branch or local Employment Resource Centre. Both places will have free papers where you can look in classified sections of the Toronto Star, Toronto Sun, Globe and Mail and National Post. Also check free weeklies like NOW magazine and The Grid, and free dailies like 24 Hours and Metro found by any TTC station.
- Cold Calling – in the days before the Internet, many job seekers would use phone books and business directories to call employers directly and ask if there are openings or jobs available. Modern folks now use ca – an internet tool with an easy to use search engine that gives you names and phone numbers of specific businesses as well as links to their web sites. If you don’t have a computer, pick up a free copy of the YELLOW PAGES.