(MoneyWatch) Any job seeker who has been around the career block knows that the process of finding a new position has drastically changed along with the market. The job landscape has been transformed and different strategies should be used when navigating it. Recently, I asked Kathleen Brady, a certified career coach and corporate trainer with more than 25 years of experience, for some advice on job searching today. Here are three key differences she sees and how you should adapt to them, based on information in her new book, "GET A JOB! 10 Steps to Career Success."
People are battle weary
First, 9/11 shook the nation and then the financial breakdown of 2009 hit. The former rattled people and the second broke down their beliefs even more, says Brady. "People are second-guessing their choices after losing their job through no fault of their own. They are moving more cautiously when it comes to making career decisions." People are also putting more value on a life-work balance than ever. She suggests that people consider lifestyle cutbacks if spending gets in the way of taking a dream job that's lower-paying. "This opens up the world of possibilities. Then your choice becomes bigger than just finding a job. What do you want your life to look like?"
Technology has impacted the process
Ten years ago, people applied online and with paper resumes -- today, the latter is very rare. "There are online screeners for resumes, and in some ways online resume databases are complicated and confusing to applicants," notes Brady. The best way tois to tailor each one to the particular job. "Tweak your resume so it has similar language and keywords from the job description -- otherwise the computer will spit it out," says Brady.
There is more hostility
Job applications today may involve completing a 20-page online questionnaire instead of just a carefully crafted cover letter and resume. It's frustrating, but fill the whole thing out, says Brady. "If you just write 'see the resume' a real person may see the application and think you're not serious about the job because you didn't put the time in to fill it out," says Brady. Her advice is to apply to fewer jobs but put more effort into each one. This will prevent both you and the hiring manger from getting exasperated with the hiring process. "There is much more of a 'me versus them' mentality these days. Job seekers feel like they're jumping through too many hoops, and hiring managers feel like they're getting mass e-mailed, unfocused resumes and applications," says Brady.
How do YOU think the job search process has changed in the last 10 years? 20 years?
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons user Harumphy