An effective job search can be depicted as a flow chart with a series of stages. Each stage should be performed in the order presented.  For additional resources for each job search stage, click a link within the flowchart diagram.

1. Determine your employment goal. What type of job do you want?  Be specific
                                                                              and very clear as to what job you wish to apply for and which organizations
                                                                              would be a good match for your skills. Focus your job search efforts to satisfy
                                                                              these objectives.

2. Prepare for your job search by having the following marketing tools ready
                                                                               BEFORE you begin contacting employers.

  Resume/Cover Letter
  Your 30 second pitch

                                                                               Develop your job search plan beginning with your wish list of places you
                                                                               would like to work.

3. Conduct your job search in an organized manner. Establish timelines to follow-up 
   with employers and stick to your job search plan.

4. The interview.  Prepare for possible questions you may be asked and find out
   everything you can about the company prior to your interview.

5. Landing the job and ongoing career management.  Once you have landed the job,
                                                                               you need to evaluate if it is meeting your expectations.  Is there room for growth
                                                                               and advancement? If not, it's time to start back at the beginning to form a new plan.

Marketing Tools

Cover Letter

This introduction letter not only personalizes the resume
but it also allows you to emphasize, and expand on, the
relevant skills and qualifications that you possess for 
the particular position or company  to which you are

Unless the employer indicates otherwise, your resume
should ALWAYS have a cover letter.

For an excellent resource on resume and cover letter 
templates visit:


There are three different types of resume layouts; chronological, functional and combination.  Each has unique advantages depending on how you wish to market yourself to employers.

Chronological Resume

The chronological resume is the traditional style of 
resume that most people are familiar with. This 
resume lists your educations and employment history
from most recent. This style of resume is best if:

- You are applying for a job that is in the same 
- You have relevant work experience 
- You have impressive and descriptive previous
          job titles 

With this type of resume under your work experience
section you want to organize your jobs in reverse 
chronological order and provide point form descriptions
of the duties that you performed while employed there. 

Functional Resume

This format summarizes your experience and skills while minimizing your employment history. This allows you to minimize previous job titles and is best used if:

- You have had the same job and job title for a long period of time 
- If you are seeking employment in a different industry 
- You are a recent graduate who does not have industry experience but have the knowledge and skills 
- If you are returning to the work force after a long absence 
- The skills needed for the position are not skills you have used in your recent work experience 

With this type of resume it is still essential that you have all the information that you would need to produce a chronological resume. 

Identify a few essential skills that relate to the type of job that you are applying for i.e. Teamwork, Communication, and Writing. These skills will go under a skills or qualifications section.

Take each duty from your work experience and apply it to one of the essential skills that you have chosen, remember it may be necessary to add the company information to the points as to verify which job you were at when completing these duties.

Combination Resume

This format is a combination of both the Chronological and Functional resumes and lets you emphasis experience, skills and work history. This resume is best used by people:

- Who have had various job titles and positions 
- Who have had volunteer or internship positions 

The work experience section is broken down into multiple sections and job that are similar are grouped under these sections. Examples would be Office Experience and Research Experience.


An effective way to initiate cold calls, begin interviews and meet people who may be in a position to hire  you would be to establish a great introduction to describe your employment objective, skills that fit that objective and a request to discuss your qualifications further.

For example;

“Hi, my name is ________________.  I am contacting you because I am interested in working as a _____________ within your organization. I believe I would be an excellent candidate for this position as I have a degree in ____________ and the following skill sets; ________________
,_________________ and ___________________. I have also experience in this line of work in my past job as ___________________ with _______________ (company). I wonder if I could set up a meeting with you to discuss this opportunity further?”

Try to have a very professional and polished pitch that is 30 seconds long and another that is 60 seconds long which provides more information about yourself. This is also a great confidence booster because it allows you to talk about yourself very easily and "breaks the ice" if you are nervous about meeting with potential employers.

Job Search Tips

The most important part to your job search is organization. 
You need to keep track of where you dropped off resumes,
who you contacted, potential leads, interview and follow-up
dates. This can be done cheaply by investing in a calendar 
or notebook. If you are more high-tech, try putting the 
information in your Outlook calendar or Excel sheet and link-
ing it to your PDA or cell phone. Lack of a  solid plan leads
to frustration and declining motivation.

Remember to regularly check Internet job boards,
newspapers, etc.. for employment opportunities. 

Additional links to help you get started on your job search.

The Interview

Two of the most important things you can do to prepare for
an interview is to:

1. Find out everything you can about the company/position 
    to which you are applying.

2. Practice answering the common types of interview
    questions that employers ask. 

A great resource to practice your interview skills can be
found at the "Quintessential Careers" website; 

Just for fun!

Try to pick out the mistakes made by the person in the "bad" interview example in the video.

What positive things did the person do in the "good" interview?

Job Search Strategies
Prepare for your job search right NOW!

Download this presentation to help guide you through this fifth step of your career plan. (Requires PowerPoint, or PowerPoint Viewer).

The Work Room Career Resource Centres offer a free one hour module complete with a workbook and customized coaching to help you prepare for your job search!  Visit The Work Room website for contact information.
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= Career Planning Cycle
= Job Search Cycle
Watch a video on good and bad interview techniques.