by Amy Schofield, Guest Contributor
With the busy summer PCS season approaching, many military spouses will be looking for a new job at their next duty station.
But why wait until you arrive in your new location to start your job hunt? If you do, you might be behind the hundreds of other military spouses looking to score the same type of job there!
Here are 5 easy steps to take now to help your job search before your summer PCS:
Update your address on your resume: Sure, you may not know what your new address is going to be, but that is OK.
Leave off your street address and update your address to solely include the city and state of your new duty station.
This will help you remain a valid candidate when you apply to jobs at companies who use applicant tracking systems to weed out candidates. Some companies place geographic restrictions right within their applicant tracking system.
If your address is an out-of-town address, your resume may never get through the applicant tracking system and to a human set of eyes no matter how qualified you are.
By the way, now is also a good time to brush up your resume while you are at it!
Review your social media profiles: Jobvite’s 2015 Recruiter Nation report revealed that 92% of recruiters are using social media in their outreach to find and source candidates.
Not on LinkedIn? Now is the time to establish yourself on there! Change your location, update your profile and ask for 2 additional recommendations on LinkedIn.
Haven’t reviewed your Facebook profile settings? Now is the time to do that too! Double check that your profile visibility is set so that a potential hiring manager will not see any negative photos or posts.
Send out networking letters: Creating a networking letter is a great way to let your network know that you are moving to a new location and looking for a new position. You never know who may know someone who is hiring in your new location. Identify people who you think could help you with your job search and send out a letter like this:
I will be relocating from (city, state) to (city, state), and therefore, I am looking for my next career move! My focus is a (industry/position type) role drawing on (something that makes you stand out). I have enclosed my resume, which highlights my accomplishments.
I am asking my network of trusted colleagues (or friends, etc.) to help me identify possible employers that would value someone with my experience and skills. My work history emphasizes (list three examples of your professional accomplishments).
If you know of someone I should contact to explore an opportunity, I’d appreciate the referral. You can reach me at (phone number) or email me at (email address).
Build ties with 10 local companies: Spend 2 hours researching companies near your new duty station that you may want to work for. Check to see if they have any open positions that interest you.
If they do, apply to those jobs.
If they don’t, don’t get discouraged. Check back on a weekly basis as new jobs are posted all of the time. Use their company website and LinkedIn to find the names of hiring managers or human resources personnel at the company and reach out to them. Send a personalized note via LinkedIn letting them know that you just applied to a particular position and are looking forward for the opportunity to help their company grow.
If there are not any open positions that interest you, include a personalized note saying that you will be moving to their location soon and are looking forward to any opportunities that may arise.
Also research one recruiter or temp agency that has ties to your new location and reach out to them.
Register to attend a networking event in your new location: I know, the movers haven’t even come to your house yet, but it is never too early to register to attend a networking event in your new location.
First, this is a really great way to make new friends at your new duty station right away, but more importantly, it could connect you to the right people. Check to see if there is a local Hiring Our Heroes job fair or In Gear Career chapter at your next duty station and register to attend one of their events.
Moving is stressful, but if you plan ahead of time you could really help excel your job search by updating your resume, conducting local researchand connecting with the right people ahead of time.
Are you moving this summer? Have you started your job search in your new location? Which of these tips will you use during your job search?
Amy Schofield, an Academy Certified Resume Writer and an Academy Certified Profile Writer, has 12+ years of experience in the recruiting, career coaching, and resume writing fields. She is the founder of Schofield Strategies, LLC TM, an organization that provides resume development and job search strategies to job seekers of various backgrounds and experience levels from around the world.
As an active-duty military spouse, she actively helps transitioning veterans and military spouses reach their career goals. Amy has been featured in GI Jobs, Reserve and National Guard Magazine, Army Wife Talk Radio, and Blue Star Families and serves as the Resume Expert for the National Military Spouse Network. Her work is published in the book Modernize Your Job Search Letters: Get Noticed… Get Hired. Schofield Strategies was the recipient of the 2013 Military Family Member Community Heartbeat Award.