I designed this self-administered checklist to help you close any gaps in your job search. By asking a series of questions, you may learn more about your job search strengths as well as any areas that need improvement. I just want you to think then prepare.
1. Can you clearly and concisely state your short-term and long-term career goals?
2. Can you list your assets in terms of you top five skill sets and personality strengths?
3. Do you know what your weaknesses are?
4. Can you describe the work activities you enjoy the most?
5. Can you identify the three accomplishments you are the most proud of professionally?
6. Have you determined the salary range you will consider?
7. Are you really mentally prepared to devote the time and energy for your search? Can you be doggedly persistent?
2. Opportunity Analysis
1. Can you list just three fields of employment that would be a good fit for you? Do you know the current trends in each?
2. Can you list three specific job titles you will pursue? Do you know the qualifications for each job title?
3. Can you name at least ten employers that might hire you?
4. Have you researched the organizations and opportunities for which you will apply to?
5. Have you clarified your geographic preferences and limitations?
6. Do you have a sense of approximately how long your job search will take? Do you have an established timeline?
3. Job Search Mechanics
1. Do you have a good organizing and tracking system for your job search?
2. Have you set up a daily job search routine to maximize and efficiently use your time?
3. Have you thought about what resources you will need to achieve your job search objectives?
4. Do you have a strong emotional support system to help keep your morale high?
5. Do you know who is on your “Dream Team” of advisors?
6. Do you know how to network? Can you list the top ten people you should network with first?
7. Do you know how to apply to jobs?
8. Can you think of at least five techniques to find a job?
9. Can you list more than five staffing agencies that might be able to help?
10. What three online job sites will you post your resume to?
11. Have you thought of an alternative plan if your job search runs into problems?
4. Resume and Cover Letter Development
1. Do you know if you need an “Objective” category on your resume? If yes, do you know how it would read?
2. Can you decide which type of resume works best for you: chronological or functional?
3. Do you know if your resume should be one or two pages?
4. Have you revised your resume and had it professionally critiqued?
5. Do you know what you need to put in your cover letter to make it persuasive?
6. Have you contacted your references and updated them on the status of your search?
7. Can you think of how many resumes you should be sending out each week?
5. Interview Preparation
1. Do you know what to say if an employer calls you back?
2. Do you know what you would wear to an interview?
3. Can you list some of the most common interview questions? Do you have well thought out responses to them?
4. Could you back up everything you have written on your resume with demonstrated examples in an interview?
5. Have you thought about what questions you need answered by the employer for you to accept an offer?
6. Can you give an employer three to five specific reasons why they should hire you?
7. Have you considered what you need to say in a thank you letter after the interview?
8. Do you know what your follow-up strategy will be?
9. Can you successfully negotiate the salary range you seek?