How to Find A New Job in 13 Easy Steps (With Pros and Cons)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published June 18, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

You might decide to change jobs at any point in your career. Although looking for a new job can be a very exciting process, it also typically involves work and preparation. Understanding how to use the job search process to your advantage can help you expand your network, find new job opportunities, and choose a career that's right for you. In this article, we explain how to find a new job in 13 steps and explore the pros and cons of switching jobs.

How to find a new job

If you are interested in pursuing a new role, you might wonder how to find a new job. There are often many variables in the process because there are many different kinds of jobs, each with varying employer expectations and education and experience requirements. Understanding how to navigate the process is important and can help you learn when and where to look for a job and how to browse job postings.

Researching your desired role can help you be more confident and show employers your intent, professionalism, and suitability for the role. Here are some steps that you can take to help you find a new job:

1. Evaluate your current position

It can be helpful to first examine the reason why you want to switch jobs. If you like the company you're working for but want a more satisfying position, you can speak to HR or your manager to explore other positions within the company. They might be able to find you a more suitable position in the organization before you seek a role in another company.

Related: Should I Quit My Job?

2. Decide on a job

At this point in the process, you might not know the exact job you want. To help you decide, consider the field you want to work in, or the type of tasks you prefer. You can narrow your search to a few roles in a specific industry and start by comparing its most popular roles.

3. Consider taking a career aptitude test

There are many free online quizzes that can help you evaluate which careers might suit you. These types of tests can range from in-depth reports, often through a paid service, to more general results. These tests might even expose you to some exciting career options you hadn't previously considered.

4. Review job search sites

An online job board can offer more valuable information than simple job listings. For instance, you can find salary information, specific job roles, job trends, expected skills, and education requirements. They often have a career guide where you can get advice and find other information to help narrow your desired job list.

5. Start networking

You might also consider expanding your job options through networking. By connecting with professionals in the field you're interested in, you can learn about opportunities or best practices you can apply to your job search. Consider speaking to people you know or joining a networking group.

6. Gather referrals

Many employers, past and present, can provide you with a recommendation letter that outlines your experience and any special qualifications. This can also serve as a general character reference that you can use in job applications. A referral letter can help you be more competitive when seeking a role that has many other applicants.

7. Update your social media and networking sites

Many employers review candidates' social media profiles during the hiring process. It's beneficial to review your professional profiles and update them to suit your job search. Ensure the information you include is professional and portrays your most impressive accomplishments.

Related: 10 Steps on How to Update a Resume (Benefits and Tips)

8. Find a recruiting agency

Job recruiters can help you search for specific types of jobs and are especially useful for individuals with specialized qualifications and years of experience. Recruiting agencies typically work directly with employers of all sizes, and may seek candidates with all levels of experience. Employers typically like working with an agency because it can pre-screen candidates, which can make the hiring process more efficient for them.

9. Update your resume and cover letter

You can review your resume and add any new experience or skills while removing irrelevant or old information. For example, if you've moved recently, you can update your address and other contact information. You might also focus your resume and cover letter on the type of position you're seeking, ensuring that the information you include is relevant to the role.

10. Explore job fairs

Job fairs are another effective method for networking and gaining company information. Some of these events might be industry-specific, but others can have a more general assortment of employers. Job fairs provide an opportunity to speak to company representatives in person, so it's often beneficial to bring your resume and business card.

11. Research companies

To learn more about a potential employer, you can visit their website. A company's website can offer valuable information about its products or services, future goals, industry accomplishments, and hiring opportunities. This information can be important if you're considering applying to or comparing various companies.

12. Consider volunteering

Often, great jobs can result from volunteering, through networking, job experience, and new skills. Volunteering might help you enter into a company and career, especially if a company isn't currently hiring. It can also look good on a resume because it can show a potential employer that you're altruistic and dedicated to an industry.

13. Start applying

Once you've done your research and updated your resume, cover letter, and social profiles, you can apply for jobs. Consider using resume and cover letter templates to help you create your own documents, as these can guide you and make the writing process easier. You can also edit your resume and cover letter to align with each position and ensure you follow the submission guidelines.

Related:

  • How Do I Know When I Need a New Job? (and What Comes Next)

  • When To Change Jobs: Reasons, Considerations, and Steps

Pros and cons of changing jobs

It's helpful to consider the advantages and disadvantages of making a career change to help ensure you're doing it for the right reasons. Taking an objective assessment of your situation might even give you more confidence when looking for a job. Here are some common pros and cons of changing jobs for you to consider:

Pros

Creating a list of the reasons changing jobs might be beneficial can often help you see the situation more clearly and even motivate you to take action. You can start your list with the primary reasons you feel a new job is in your best interest. Here are some positives you might consider including on your list:

  • Advance your career: Perhaps a new position can give you the opportunity to develop in your chosen career and feel more appreciated or fulfilled.

  • Gain more flexibility: A new job might provide you with more flexibility in your work hours or vacation times, or even provide an opportunity to work from home.

  • Earn more money: One of the most common reasons for wanting to change jobs is a raise in pay or the opportunity to receive annual bonuses.

  • Enter an exciting work environment: You can consider whether the company culture in your current position is a good fit for you. A new position might offer a more comfortable or exciting working environment.

  • Work from a new location: You might want to take a job in a new province or territory. The new position might require less commuting or simply provide a welcome change.

  • Achieve work-life balance: Improving your work-life balance is another key reason to change roles, especially if you have many personal obligations.

  • Follow your passion: People often look for a new job to find work that's more fulfilling. You can consider what types of work make you happiest and look for jobs in that area.

Related:

  • How to Find Your Passion in 13 Steps (and Why It Matters)

  • 10 Job Search Tips to Use If You Need Help Finding a Job

  • How To Negotiate a Start Date for a New Job (With Examples)

Cons

If you're deciding whether to leave a job, it's often beneficial to highlight aspects and people you might miss or regret leaving. Sometimes a job can have many positives you might overlook if you're focused on changing positions, so listing them can help you assess the situation more effectively. Here's a list of examples that you can consider including on your list:

  • Seniority: The more time you've invested in a job and specific company, the more seniority you often have. This might mean you have an opportunity to move up in the company, which normally comes with more pay.

  • Relationships: You've likely built some friendships or close colleague relationships that can make working at your current company more enjoyable.

  • Job experience: Working for a company long-term can often make the job easier because you understand the position, company culture, and objectives of the role.

  • Reliability: Knowing you have a reliable daily routine might be important to you and changing jobs may disturb this.

  • Benefits: If you have a benefits package that includes yearly bonuses, a company pension, and life insurance, this might be difficult to give up when changing jobs.

  • Stability: Often, lending and other credit institutions prefer individuals who have a stable, long work record. For instance, if you're looking to buy a new home, a lender might value a consistent work record when you apply for a mortgage.

Related: How to Secure a Good Job in a Competitive Job Market

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