October 27, 2020

When and Where to Apply for a New Job

Cody Broussard

Previously we dug into tips on how to refresh your resume at the start of your job search. The good news is with that completed, you really have one of the more daunting steps behind you. Now it’s time to start applying for jobs. Figuring out when and where to apply for a job can feel exhausting with so many options out there.

Where to start looking for jobs online can feel like a rabbit hole. LinkedIn always feels like the Cadillac of job postings. ZipRecruiter, Indeed, CareerBuilder are also great resources. The list goes on and those are great places to start, but I would also dig into local lists that are published by someone in your region whose job is networking and helping job seekers find roles. Here in Denver, Lew’s List is an excellent resource for accounting specific roles: https://www.lewslist.com/.Andrew Hudson’s Jobs List is another great resource, but not accounting specific in focus: https://andrewhudsonsjobslist.com/.These are excellent ways to hear about top roles with companies that are generally vetted by the people who run the websites.

When to invest the time in a job application is another critical piece of your search. Title is an important thing to consider before starting to apply. If you are a recent graduate who has a year of experience as a Staff Accountant, filling out a long online application for an Accounting Manager is not a good use of your time. It also can make an in house recruiters’ job more tedious as they are sifting through resumes. If you have a solid foundation in your current role as a Staff Accountant though, applying for a Senior Staff Accountant is not overreaching. Job descriptions are a wish list for a hiring manager, so if you are missing one or two pieces of the required experience and you apply then it’s a great way to get on the company’s radar. If this role is specialized and requires leadership and you are just starting your career then its not the right time for you to send over your resume. Generally speaking, you should already have 90-95% of the requirements for the role to make undertaking the online application a good use of your time. There will be plenty of companies hiring and you want to use your time wisely and invest in opportunities where you are most likely to get a callback.

Not to muddy the water, but there are always exceptions. If you are looking at a role that excites you but is out of your current scope of experience it could be a great time to utilize LinkedIn. If a team is posting a role that makes you do a double take, its likely it is their culture and company that is enticing to you, so follow their company and connect with people in that department on LinkedIn. They will likely advertise for other opportunities that are in line with your experience and you will already be connected and can easily start a conversation about your interest when the time is right.

If you are looking at a role posted by a recruiting agency like J2T, and you like the position but know you aren’t ready to take on that role- that is also a perfect time to connect with that recruiter, introduce yourself and talk more about where you are in your career and what your next role should ideally look like. Recruiters often gravitate towards specific industries or similar cultures so it’s likely they have other clients who run their business similarly and they have their ear to the ground on openings that are not even listed online. A relationship with a talented recruiter allows you partner with someone who does much of the networking and leg work for you.  As we continue to evaluate the process of finding your next job, our next topic will be how to identify a recruiter who can best act as a partner to you.