If you are in hospitality industry and your job is one of the million jobs that dissolve during pandemic, it is understandable to feel angry, confused, and overwhelmed. To those who are lucky, perhaps you are in constant fear of losing your job anytime soon. Hospitality professionals are generally tough and resilient. Don’t lose hope. There are still jobs out there. However, looking for jobs during these challenging times can be a lot of work, frustrating and difficult. Perhaps you don’t even know where to start.
So, we compiled helpful techniques, advice, and tools for hospitality professionals to make your job search more effective, and efficient based on our knowledge and experience.
Before diving into job boards, career websites and sending hundreds of your resumes. The first step that you can do is, take care of yourself. So, why self-care is the first step in your job search? We all know that we need to take care of ourselves, but for some reasons, we don’t do it. However, during your job search, taking care of yourself is the foundation to have a positive attitude, perseverance, resilience, and success in overcoming these difficult times.
Here are 10 steps that you can do to take charge of your job search and your life:
- Make sure you have 6 to 8 hours of sleep daily.
- Set time for moderate exercise, hydrate, and eat healthy meals.
- Spend time with people who value you, and pets if you have one.
- Take a walk outside and find a spot away from people to just look up the sky.
- It’s fine to relax and watch movies and TV shows, but avoid binge watching.
- Refrain from mindlessly scrolling on your smart phone and ends up reading, and watching things that cannot help you, or worst, upsets you.
- Devote some time be in the moment, without thoughts and judgement. Some may call this meditation.
- Organize and clean your room and space for your job search.
- Don’t forget physical hygiene.
- Build a healthy habit.
2.) Get organized.
- Prepare your resume, cover letter, and update your LinkedIn profile.
- If you are not yet on LinkedIn, build a profile as soon as possible.
- If you have not written your own resume or update it for a long time, and you feel overwhelm putting it together, ask a professional to help you to do this.
- Gather recommendations either for your online applications, or for your LinkedIn profile.
- Identify and write down hospitality job boards, recruiters’ websites, and hospitality companies that you will send applications. Don’t forget to identify hospitality organizations and associations, magazines, and trade journals where there are also job postings available for your profession.
3.) Manage your job search.
- Put a system in place such as work sheet, or job tracking tool to track your resume submissions, networking contacts and interviews.
- Treat your job search as your full-time job.
- You may need a new email address only dedicated to your job applications. You don’t want to miss important emails from recruiters or employers. Make sure your email address is professional.
- Only apply for jobs that you are qualified. For example, do not apply for Accountant if you are a Restaurant Manager, even if the accountant position is in a restaurant. Unless, you have experience as an Accountant before becoming a Restaurant Manager.
- Set a voice message, identifying you, in your smart phone, or home telephone, in case you miss important calls. Ask them to leave a message. For example, “Hi, this is John Smith, I’m not available to take your call, please leave your name and number and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can. Thank you.”
4.) Spend more time networking.
- Spend 70% to 80% of your time networking and 30% to 20% of your time searching and applying jobs online. Not the other way around. By reaching out to more people, you may discover unpublished or unposted jobs. Your network is your family members, friends, former colleagues, former classmates, mentors, teachers, neighbors, people in the same organizations and associations, even strangers.
- Always stay pleasant and professional, not desperate when trying to reach out to your network.
- Do volunteer works, attend workshops and conferences. You will never know who you will meet that could be a potential help in your job search. Also, volunteering provides you a sense of purpose by giving back to your community.
5.) Get opportunities to come to you.
- Set up search agents or tools online that you can use to get job alerts via email or RSS feeds. Hospitality job boards, job aggregators, large hospitality companies and organizations provide features that can help you setup a profile, and job search agent on their sites. For example, after you register at Indeed.com, you can type in your keywords, such as Director of Rooms, Rooms Division Manager, Front Office Manager and click on Search All Jobs – since Indeed is a job aggregator, it will crawl the web and direct job seekers to hospitality career websites, hospitality job boards, association websites, blogs etc.,. Once you are satisfied with this search you can then set up an email notification, or an RSS feed whenever new jobs with these titles are posted.
6.) Post your resume online.
- Register and post your resume on hospitality job boards, employee sites, job aggregators, hospitality associations and organizations, even if you cannot find the jobs that you are looking at this time. When a new position arises in the company the first thing that recruiters do is search their database for suitable applicants.
- When posting your resume, some websites, there are two options. Uploading a resume or fill out an online application form. Do both and fill out everything. Don’t leave anything blank. Make sure you utilize your keywords in filling up forms. Your keywords are the job title that you are applying.
- Make sure your resume is applicant tracking system friendly, and only post a resume made for the job you are qualified.
- Guard your privacy. Check the website for their privacy policies, and how they use your information. Do not submit your resume on unknown websites and websites recommended by strangers asking you to click on links.
- Do not provide your social security number.
- Legitimate job boards, job aggregators, employer websites are free to register and post your resume. Be cautious when the website asks you to pay first before you can post your resume.
7.) Reaching out and working with hospitality Recruiters.
- If there are hospitality company recruiters that you know on your contacts list, it may be worth reaching out to them first before applying aimlessly on job boards. Think about the unpublished or unposted jobs that they may know.
- Be polite and professional when you contact recruiters even if you know them personally, or someone you added in social network site like LinkedIn. Tell them exactly the job that you are looking for, and make sure you are qualified for this job. Refrain from sending your generic resume and ask them to find you whatever job is suitable.
- Reaching out to recruitment agencies specializing in hospitality is also very helpful in your job search. They represent multiple employers, and they may be able to find you alternative jobs.
- Recruiters who ask you for payment, are not recruiters, they are scammers. Recruiters are paid by the company they represent, not the other way around.
8.) Use your online profile to improve your visibility to recruiters/employers.
- If you are not on LinkedIn, you missed many opportunities already. Recruiters, hiring managers and employers are on Linked a long time ago. So, make sure to register, build your profile and start networking.
- If you have a profile already, get it working for you. First, provide a professional photo on your profile. Second, make your headline speaks for you, for example, “A Culinary Arts graduate seeking Culinary Internships.” When a recruiter search for culinary interns in LinkedIn, you are visible to them. Third, make your ‘About/Summary’ page as interesting as possible, tell your story. Fourth, continue to tell your story on your experience page. Gather recommendations for your profile and provide recommendations too.
- If blogging is your thing, do it. Make sure it is focus in your industry, or line of work. For example, if you are a Pastry Chef, blogging about food, pastries, and new recipes is a good start. Blogging about politics, maybe not, and may put off recruiters and employers.
- If you are in Twitter, tweet relevant information related to hospitality.
- Manage the privacy of your personal social media accounts. If it is on public, make sure you do not have any posts or photos that can compromise you.
9.) Organize your finances.
- Track your spending and eliminate purchases that you do not need.
- Set a budget every month. It may take a while for you to get another job.
- Cancel any subscriptions and memberships that you may not need at this time.
- Pay your dues. Some potential employers run a background check these days.
10.) Thank You – a powerful tool in job search.
- Send thank you notes to your networks who may have helped you in any ways during your job search journey.
- Send thank you message to Recruiters who contacted you either for screening or preliminary interviews and of course to your interviewers.
- Say thank you to your friends and family who are with you on your journey.
- When dealing with rejections and no response in your applications – say thank you to yourself for enduring, and persevering during these challenging times.
Here are some resources that may help you during your job search:
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