Looking for a Job

You just moved to Virginia. The company you worked for closed. You want another job. Whatever the reason, you are out there … on the job hunt.

Where to begin

Ask yourself what kind of a job you want. Do you want a job like what you’ve done in the past? Or do you want to do something different? Make a list.

If you’re not sure, fill out the interest worksheet at http://www.sunraye.com/job_net/ws3.htm. This helps you identify things you like to do AND shows you what job areas relate to your interests.

What skills do you have? Do you know how to use any special equipment or tools? Have you ever supervised one or more people? Are you a good writer or artist? Are you organized? Think about all the jobs you’ve had – paid or unpaid – and what you did while working.

To find a list of skills, go to http://www.sunraye.com/job_net/ws5.htm. The chart lists different skills needed in the workplace. Go through the list and check off the skills you have and how well you think you perform that task. Be sure to write down the job where you gained that skill. This will help you right your resume and answer questions at a job interview.

Finding available jobs

Now that you know what kind of a job you want and what your skills are, it’s time to start looking for a job. Here are some ideas of where to look:

“Help Wanted” section in the classifieds in your local newspaper. Cut out any that sound interesting.

On the Internet: The Internet is a great resource for finding available jobs and for researching companies you are applying to.

At Virginia Workforce Centers: These centers across Virginia offer a wide variety of career services, including skills assessment and help with filling out applications and writing resumes. Computers are available at the centers for you to use in searching for jobs online.

Networking: Networking is a way of looking for jobs by enlisting the help of family, friends, neighbors, and other people you know.

Other tips

Set goals. Job hunting is a job in itself. Consider everything else you have to do: are you still working? Do you have family responsibilities? Don’t stress yourself by applying for too many jobs at one time. Decide how many jobs you will apply for in a week or a month.

Keep a notebook. Keep a record of any job you apply for. If you hear about a job through a friend and apply for it, write down what the job is, to whom you sent your application and when you sent it. If you apply for a job through a newspaper ad, cut it out and paste it in your notebook. Write down when you applied for the job. Note if you get a call for an interview. Cross the job out if you don’t get it.

Make a list of your skills. This makes you feel good about what you can do. It will also help match your skills to the skills needed for the job you are applying for.

Write a job list. This should include every job you’ve had, starting with the most recent; the company name, address, and phone number; when you worked there; and the name of your supervisor. Bring this with you when you go to apply for a job or go on an interview. It will help you when you need to fill out a job application.

For more tips, Western Kentucky University Career Services Center has a list at their web site.

Job Center

Back to Main St.

The Main Street project is a partnership of the Virginia Department of
Education, James Madison University and the Workforce Improvement Network
For more information about this project, contact Lisa Schick

Last Updated On Wednesday February 19, 2003 8:03 AM