Finding a new job entails a variety of factors: having an exciting and concise CV, knowing where to look, researching your potential employer, working hard to get the interview and simply knowing how to present yourself as being a cut above the rest of the applicant pool. What many people fail to realise that a solid, targeted job search is a major key to employment success.

It is quite understandable when many people feel a sense of panic at losing their job. This often leads people to apply for any and every job that is posted. Some even resort to applying outside their areas of expertise in a panic to replace income. This is a completely normal response to the situation, but it is not one that will lead to overall success.

Many people find that after 20 years with the same company, their salaries are far above what the current market will support, which leads to discouragement. However, not all hope is lost. This is the time when using targeted job search methods will lead to increased success and satisfaction.

The first step is clarifying exactly where you want to get with new employment. If you are a Network Administrator for a small company, you need to identify where you want to go for here. For instance, you may have been held back from advancing in your position due to company size. Perhaps you need to consider targeting larger companies with more opportunities for advancement and positions that are on a higher level that what you are used to doing. On the other hand, the skills you developed in a small company may not be broad enough for a global company with more complex job requirements. The object here is to narrow down the types of companies and positions for which you are well matched. If you find it is time to move on and up with your career, consider enrolling in classes that will advance your skill levels to match the position you want to secure.

Do your research. Simply uploading your resume to Careerbuilder will not likely lead you where you truly want to go. Research local companies in your field by searching:

    Industry Association websites and publications
    Company websites
    Business and trade publications
    Career fairs
    Numerous online job boards
    Your geographic location
    Social media sites

You need detailed information about the company and its business in order to demonstrate your interest and familiarity with the company. Talk to people you know who work at the company of interest whenever possible. Find out the real advancement opportunities, advantages and disadvantages of working there. Ask yourself whether you really want to work at this company for the long term. If you do not, then don’t apply.

Don’t panic and don’t get desperate. Sometimes, timing is everything. Keep an eye on the local job postings of your targeted companies of interest. Hiring needs change daily and new positions open up.

Finally, if you have identified several related positions for which you qualify and are interested (e.g., book keeper and office manager), make sure you have two separate CVs on file that reflect the unique talents you hold for each position, as they are quite different, and different skills need to be highlighted in each resume.