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Job seeking for the first time in years? Here’s where you start

Written by: Charlotte Rogers
Published on: 8 Nov 2019

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Whether you are a first time job-seeker, you have taken a career gap, or you have been in a long-standing role, getting started with a new job search can be difficult. Either you have never been through this process before or it's been a while since you have looked for a new job. Which ever one it may be, the many ways in which people can search for a job has changed and it can be hard to try and figure out what kind of role you would like without testing them out. However, we have some tips for you on how to start your job search and jumpstart your new career.

What kind of role do you want?

Before you begin your job search, it’s probably best to figure out what it is you want from your next role. If you are just starting your career, try and find opportunities that offer beginners courses or apprenticeships. If you have experience, think about why you want to leave your current job and what you want to gain from this? Finally, if you want to return to work after a career gap, think about what kind of work you want, part-time, full-time or are you looking for a returnship role? There are a lot of opportunities for you and there are different paths for them all. Take some time to think this over carefully before you start sending out your CV. 

Work on your CV

If you haven’t had to search for a job in a while, your CV will be the first thing that needs updating. It can make the job search easier on you, if you are spending some time tailoring the CV. Tailoring your CV shows the employer that you have done your research. You have taken the time to read the spec, find what skills you have and what you can offer the company and taken the time to outline these specific skills on your CV for them to see. – if your skills are laid out appropriately on your CV, they will be easier to find. You want the employer to be able to see the skills straight way, keep them reading your cv and get them interested.

Make sure you have your most recent role updated on your CV. If this was a long time ago, make sure you are mentioning why you had a career gap on your CV. Career gaps are not frowned upon, regardless of the reason regarding your absence from work, you would have done something in that time. Turn it into a positive and provide the employer with reasoning and explain what you learnt during this time.


Networking before you apply for roles can help give you a boost in confidence. By talking to professionals in your field you are able to find out more about their experiences and they may even give you advice on where to look or what kind of job can be good for you. You may even want to attend career fairs and other similar networking events. These can allow you to talk to employers as well as other professionals and you can figure out whether an employer and business would be a good fit for you.

Update your LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn is a massive way to network online and find new job opportunities. It may have been a while since you updated this with your latest job role, CV and even your location if you have moved. Once you have updated everything, you even have the option of letting recruiters know you are available for opportunities.  As well as any networking opportunities.

Some employers use LinkedIn profiles when trying to put together a shortlist. It is very handy to have this all up to scratch and looking fresh. They can use your profile to find out more about you and your professional career.

Career returner programmes

Career returner programmes give employers the opportunity to access a level of talent from professionals that have taken a career break. The skills shortage in engineering can be partially filled with engineers who are keen to get back and working in their chosen profession. Returnships offer a re-introduction into the workplace and a chance to catch up with anything they may have missed in their break. They also help deal with confidence issues these job-seekers may have because of their career gap. Both the employer and the candidate benefit from these programmes. Click here for more information on these opportunities.

Job-seeking is a very positive part of your career, you are searching for the next step and if you are willing to put in the time and work, then you will see the results. Try and follow some of these tips and find some other things that work well for you and you will be in your next role in no time.