Ask US What is the most effective way to find a new job?

What is the most effective way to find a new job? Find out on

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Answer Paywizard:

Excellent question, and indeed, one on so many working Americans minds these days, whether it be with an eye toward tackling a new challenge, frustration with a current worklife situation, a change of scenery, or otherwise.  Let me provide you with a few suggestions to help you make some informed decisions and plot your course toward some new opportunities.

(1)   Staying the course vs. charting new territory – First, are you looking for a new job in the same field, or are excited to embark upon something new?  Before going any further, it is vital to take some time to consider whether you are committed to your current line of work, or whether you are open to entirely different options.  If you opt for the latter path, make sure you are as informed as possible.  See steps 2 and 3.

(2)   Examine different fields to determine what interests you most – you can easily do this by exploring different occupations. You may want to check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook to get a feel for the salaries and working conditions of hundreds of occupations. If you just want salary information, please check out the Paywizard’s Salary Calculator.

(3)   Find out what type of training/education you need to take this next step – Whether you decide to train to become a financial adviser, an electrician, a graphic designer, a college professor, or a professional caregiver, there are literally hundreds of schools to choose from which you could attend at night or through distance education. Identify universities in your area that you would be interested in attending and then find out whether they offer adult education classes and/or programs.  If you decide to return to school full-time, are you prepared to make this change in terms of lifestyle, finances, time management, etc.?

(4)   Prepare for your search – Depending on whether you will be searching from your current job or otherwise, having a thoughtful, organized plan can help make your search process both more effective and more efficient before you jump right into the fray.  Informed by your current and previous jobs, do your best to get a handle on why you are looking for a new opportunity and what you are committed to changing in a new position, i.e. what are you looking for in this new job as informed by your previous experiences?  Update your resume and ask a few honest, trusted friends to provide constructive feedback.  Think carefully about your household budget, and consider salary and benefit goals.  Understanding your own priorities and preferences, consider whether you would be open to relocating, and if so, where.  Once you have a sense of some of your aims, concerns, and constraints, do some research to understand the opportunities available to you.

(5)   3-2-1-liftoff! – Launch that search.  Tap your alma mater’s career center, learn about opportunities through professional, alumni, or other associations, review postings in the publications relevant for your career path, and pursue online opportunities such as those found on

(6)   Put your best foot forward – No matter how many times one applies or interviews for a job, one can always improve.  Be open to taking guidance from those who know you well. On sites such as ours, you can find career change advice for making the best first impression possible, negotiating effectively, and preparing yourself well for being an asset in your new organization.

Finding and securing a fresh opportunity requires careful planning and patience; however, if pragmatic, prepared, and organized, you can surely identify and land an opportunity that will work well for you.

Good luck!

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