2020 was a year that really did a number on the economy and caused so many individuals and companies to suffer considerable financial losses. Thus, there are myriads of great professionals in search of new job opportunities. With the dramatic increase in available talent and the perceived decrease in available opportunities, it’s important to exercise efficient and effective job-seeking habits. Here are four of the best habits to implement in your daily quest for a new contract or position.

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Check For Opportunities Within Your Current Network

While you’ve probably become very familiar with every job board available, you want to also take advantage of your network by inquiring directly about any vacancies that suit your skillset. You should aim to spend at least 30 minutes a day sourcing and messaging people in your network about potential job openings. The best way to do this is via Linkedin so that they can easily view your profile and have an informed response about positions that would suit you. Feel free to add your direct contact information as well for them to pass along to their HR team. While this tactic may seem untraditional, you’d be surprised the results it can yield! According to CNBC, nearly 70 percent of jobs in 2018 were filled due to networking.

Keep Track of All Applications/Updates

Keeping track of all your applications and updates in a centralized location is an extremely important habit many job seekers miss! I’m sure many of us have been here before – receiving a call from a company about your application, but you can’t remember what the position was or what the key qualifications were – *slowly raises hand because I’m guilty too*. Note: It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. In fact, keeping it simple will likely increase your chances of sticking with it.. so do that!

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Tailor Resumes Per Position

Did you just roll your eyes out loud? I know, many people cringe at the thought of updating their resume for each position because, well, it takes time. However, this makes you stand out as a candidate more than a one-size-fits-all resume because it highlights education and experience most relevant to the position. For example, if you are a sales and marketing professional, your resume for a Marketing Specialist role would likely focus more on creative abilities, research and strategy planning, and tech-savviness versus your resume for an Account Executive role that would likely focus more so on communication skills, funnel development, and competitive goal-driven nature to constantly hit commission targets. Note: You many also find two marketing positions that highlight different preferred qualifications as well. In this case, you’ll want to make sure each resume includes the qualifications specified.

Check Email and Voicemail Often

This should go without saying but – return missed calls, listen to all voicemails and follow up on all emails! Make sure that your cellphone remains charged and you make yourself available to chat with any employers who want to speak with you in a timely manner. As the old saying goes, sometimes “you snooze, you lose.”

These, among others, are fundamental to being proactive and productive in your job search! Follow these steps and you will optimize your search and yield best results.