I just can’t get a job!

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009 - British Forces, candidate, career change, career transition, Employment, Job Application Rejection, job hunting, job search, job seeking, redundancy, tutorial

Job Search

Beauty Sleep

Jimmy asks: Desperately seeking advice, I am so frustrated beyond belief! I really cant understand it! I’m 41 ex British Army have never been out of work until now. I have sent my CV to so many companies, and yet they don’t even bother to acknowledge – WHY?

I fully understand this as I say but I did work in recruitment very briefly to when i was recruiting for the security industry and to be honest i was told to spin a new story every day to new potential candidates just in case “a client” rang and said they maybe looking for someone etc.I found a lot of time the company I was working for was just gathering CV’s/Resume Im not having a go at anyone in particular here but just ask for a little common courtesy.Its so frustrating the not knowing or thinking shall i ring them again and again.

I fully appreciate in these difficult times there are many people applying for 1 job etc, but all I ask is a Yes or No or sorry you’re not successful. I’m a trainee Business Development Manager in Retail Construction also training as a Plumber, and have also worked in Security Industry (Licensed), HGV Class 1 Licence, British Army etc. I have also supplied personal security for corporate industry all over the world. Have a very professional approach to all I do whatever the industry. I’m honest, reliable, trust worthy etc. I’m so enthusiastic about what I do and love life. I would love to work anywhere at this moment in time including Overseas and would welcome almost any opportunity even just to prove my worth are there any genuine companies out there willing to help and give me a chance the strain is becoming so much. Its so frustrating the not knowing or thinking shall i ring them again and again.Its just so hard to get that break even at 41

In answer:
Hi Jimmy,

Your frustration flows out of your question, but I think the answer/plan is quite simple because of the energy you have that comes across, and the need/want to work – employers love that, even in a recession.

Can I ask you a question? What is it you REALLY want to be doing? An old mentor of mine used to say that the thing you want to be working at isn’t work; it is something that you want to do at least 3 days out of five; and something you will happily do on a wet Wednesday in November when the key staff member hasn’t turned up.

If you know what you want to do, then you can focus you skills on that area. If you have worked in recruitment, then you will know that focusing your CV on that job is key. You have so many skills and so much energy, I think the only problem here is focus of what you want to do. It sounds like you are settling for something over the thing, and that’s not going to work in this environment; secondly I am guessing all those skills are in your CV, and it reads like a jumble stall/pick what you want for the employer, which will confuse them

Once you know what you want to do, and think you have a CV that fits that job application, get at least three friends to review it for you. You could also use one of the CV Writers free CV review services.

Now, the key issues are tactical. Before applying for ANY job always pick up the phone and ask to speak to the person handling that job – ideally the manager of the role, if not the HR person; lastly the third party recruiter. Explain that you are ringing to check the job was still open, and ask three questions/extension from the job advert to check the required skills/competencies. Your last question should be: “Just as a personal favour X, why did you join the company and why do you enjoy working there?” The idea here is to get them talking and giving you away lots of information you can embed in your Cover Letter or CV! The last thing you should hear from them is the phrase “I look forward to your application” – that way you know you are 90% sure of making it to interview stage.

I think its only a matter of time Jimmy before you are employed, the only thing you have to do is know what you want to do and then tactically position for that in each application.

Good Luck!

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