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How long should your job search take?

job hunting job search advice Feb 12, 2022
how long should your job search take

Here’s the most burning question for any job seeker: How long is this going to take?

 If you go by the old standards, the figure is grim. Based on that model, you should plan on taking one month for every $10,000 you want to earn.

In other words, if you want to earn $120,000, that would take 12 months.


While that number is as scary as a slasher film, it is crucial to understand where that estimate comes from and what you can do to improve your overall job search length.

First of all, this follows the “traditional” job searching tactics. If all you are doing for your job search is looking for jobs online, applying through the HR department, and waiting for them to call you back, then that 12-month search is probably an accurate figure. Similarly, if you expect the outside recruiter or headhunter to do the matchmaking for you, the search could easily stretch over months.

Classic techniques that contribute to a slow job search:

  • Only applying through the HR department
  • Using outdated resumes
  • Having an incomplete LinkedIn profile
  • Not tweaking your resume for different roles
  • Only tapping into your existing network for leads
  • Expecting recruiters to do the heavy lifting for you
  • “Winging it” in job interviews

How to shorten your job search

Fortunately, there are proven strategies that can help reduce that timeframe for your job search:

  • Track down hiring managers and get your resume into their hands
  • Conduct strategic networking to reach the right people, not just any people
  • Stop wasting time on job boards like Indeed by automating your alerts
  • Adjust your resume to survive the screening computers (aka the ATS)
  • Be proactive with recruiter networks
  • Leverage a dynamic, well-written, and keyword optimized LinkedIn profile
  • Discover opportunities in the hidden job market – or create them!
  • Prepare for behavioral interviews by developing stories that are relevant to the job posting

Not sure how to implement these strategies? This is precisely where a career coach can help. Your coach should be an expert in the hiring maze, providing guidance on not just the old-school job searching strategies but also how to leverage the latest techniques.

In fact, our Down & Dirty Job Search helps people land jobs they love in half the time of a typical job search – while also earning up to 20% more salary.

Wondering how your job search strategies hold up? We would love to give you a complimentary consultation. Just go to our Contact Page to book your time with one of our coaches.

Until then, strive to think outside of the box and avoid the traps of a standard job search.

Wondering how effective your job search is? Schedule a complimentary 30-minute consultation with one of our career coaches, Donna Shannon or Dia Kline

Schedule a Consultation

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