Finding a new job isn’t easy. It can quickly turn into a logistical nightmare. Remembering where you applied, ensuring you follow up correctly, and tracking responses for hiring managers can be a massive undertaking. If not managed well, something important could slip through the cracks.
Luckily, there’s something you can do to make sure you don’t drop the ball. If you want to make your job search process better, here’s how to implement a functional tracking system that can ensure you stay on top of everything.
Choose the Right Tracking System
There are multiple ways to keep tabs on every aspect of your job search. While none of them are inherently wrong choices, some work better for certain people. As a result, it’s wise to review your options. Then, you can choose the best approach for you.
If you are looking for a simple method for tracking your job search, a spreadsheet can work. When you apply to a job, add a new row. List the position title, company name, application date, and a link to the job ad (if available). You could also copy the job description into a field if you want to make sure you can always access it.
As you move further into the process, list new information in additional columns. This can include the hiring manager’s contact details, interview dates/times/locations, whether you’ve sent a thank-you note, and when to follow up.
Alternatively, project management tools like Trello or Asana can also work. You can create new cards or projects when you apply to positions, create task lists, and keep all of the critical information centralized. With this method, you can also set reminders, which is beneficial.
If you want to forgo the digital approach, then consider using a binder. Everything can be printed and set out in front of you. Plus, you can highlight critical points, add checklists, and more.
Organize Your Email and Digital Files
Once you have a tracking mechanism in place, there’s still work to be done. You’ll need to organize any emails relating to your search. Luckily, this is relatively simple.
Consider creating new folders to maintain your messages and keep them squared away. You can work with a single job search folder or use multiple folders for different purposes.
Additionally, when it comes to digital files (like resumes and cover letters), simplify tracking by using a standard naming convention. That way, you can record exactly which companies received which documents. For example, you might go with “[abbreviated company name] [job title] [resume or cover letter] [date].” Then, even if all of the documents are in a single folder, you can locate them again with ease.
Ultimately, all of the organization tips above can allow you to enhance your job search quickly. You’ll be able to monitor your progress and ensure you don’t overlook a critical step, increasing the odds that your efforts will result in success.