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How to begin your job search Lesley Deugo, York Region Learning Connections

About the Author

Lesley Deugo is a Youth Outreach Worker for YorkYouth and Discover, at York Region Learning Connections in Richmond Hill. YorkYouth is a youth employment initiative delivered by the York Region District School Board, providing outreach and support in Southern York Region. For more information, visit

Have you ever had trouble finding a job? Does it seem like you can't find anything that suits your needs? Well, there are some simple skills that can help you in finding the perfect job to fit your preferences!

Many people rely only on looking through the classified ads in their local newspaper or searching through large online database sites. These activities can produce results when used in the correct context: But you must define your objectives clearly beforehand and focus your efforts on achieving them. The Internet is a valuable source of information about companies and industries that may not be easily available elsewhere. However, there is a large hidden job market as well, and you can tap into if you have the right skills.

To begin, you must know what you want. Figure out what you want to do by understanding what your strengths are and what your weaknesses are. There is no point in searching for and applying to jobs that do not relate to your specific career and job search goals. If you can determine the types of jobs that you want and don't want, it will narrow your job search drastically.

Secondly, your personal and professional network is an important area to research for possible job opportunities. By making phone calls, sending out emails and setting up meetings with past colleagues or friends you can discuss your goals and desires. Through these discussions, you may find that several of your acquaintances have valuable information that can help you in your search.

Finally, it is important to research specific companies that you would like to work for. You can use information from job search engines, online business directories, and the web sites of business associations to create a list of employers in your area that you want to target. The web sites of those employers may contain job announcements, as well as news releases announcing recent expansion or downsizing plans. Using job search engines, you could find out whether a specific employer has recently published job postings, and for what positions. If you have a specific job in mind, but you are unsure whether or not they are hiring, there is only one way to find out. Cold calling. This means that even though a company is not advertising that they are hiring, you must try to find out if they are looking for employees by contacting their human resource department. Many companies attempt to fill positions before they have to resort to placing an ad. By cold calling, you can gain information about job availability before a large group has access to the same position application.

By following these steps to begin your job search, you will be off to a great start in finding the job of your dreams!

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