5 useful steps that could help you secure a new job this year

A woman decorating her new desk at work.

As we enter the new year, you may be thinking about your career aspirations for 2024. Recent research suggests almost a quarter of UK workers expect to change jobs in the next 12 months, with a fifth unsatisfied with their current position.

Whether you wish to improve your work-life balance or are searching for a pay rise, here are five useful steps that could help you secure the job of your dreams.

1. Outline your goals

Take some time to think through your job aspirations and write down a list of what you’d like to achieve. Envisioning your future career and considering your motivations will help you narrow down your job search so you can find the companies most suitable for you.

2. Research your industry

Now you know what you’re looking for, start researching your industry. Invaluable information may include:

  • Current job opportunities
  • Potential progression
  • In-demand expertise
  • Skill gaps.

Use this knowledge to identify any areas of weakness in your application. If you need a new certification or to build new skills, now is your opportunity to start improving yourself.

It’s also crucial to research specific companies before applying for a job. As well as following your values, you might also want a company that suits your lifestyle, such as one that offers remote working or flexible hours.

Using a platform like Glassdoor to check company reviews will allow you to find out what working environment you could be joining in advance, so you can decide whether it’s right for you.

3. Update your CV

Once you have a list of jobs you’d like to apply to, it’s time to update your CV.

Firstly, ensure you’ve added all your recent work history, including any new skills or experience you’ve gained during your time at your current job.

Then, tailor your CV to the position you’re applying for. Including keywords from the company’s website or the job posting can draw the recruiter’s eye and prove that you’ve done your homework.

Many companies also appreciate a personalised cover letter to demonstrate your passion and interest in the role. Don’t forget to emphasise the skills and experience that would make you perfect for the job.

4. Prepare for interviews

Before the company offers you an interview, give yourself time to prepare for any questions they might ask. It’s the first time you’ll meet your potential coworkers, so it’s important to make a brilliant first impression.

Spend a few hours researching common interview questions and drafting your answers. Remember that this is also your opportunity to interview the company to see if this is the right job for you, so write down some of your own questions that you’d like answered before you accept the position.

Be kind to yourself if it doesn’t go as well as you hope. You might not be the right person for the company, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find a fantastic job somewhere else.

5. Don’t be afraid to negotiate

If the interview succeeds, then the last step before securing your new job is the negotiation stage.

No matter how passionate you are about your career, the company’s compensation for your time is a huge factor in how satisfied you will be.

Research similar roles within the same company or a competitor to see what salaries they are offering to ensure you are being paid fairly for your hard work.

If you feel like the employer is offering you less than expected, then it’s time to negotiate better pay or benefits. Professionally explain why you think you deserve more and allow them some time to draft a better offer.

Benefits such as a sick pay policy or higher pension contributions could be vital to your negotiations too. In some cases, these perks could be valuable and might play a role in your decision. They could also affect your financial plan. For example, if your new employer offers an enhanced sick pay policy, you might decide to extend the deferment period of income protection cover to reflect this.

If you’d like to talk to us about how work benefits could influence your financial plan, including long-term aspirations like retirement, please contact us.

Please note:

This blog is for general information only and does not constitute advice. The information is aimed at retail clients only.

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