Why can’t I find a job? Employment

Searching for a job can be exhausting and, at times, disheartening. But if you’ve been looking and applying for jobs over a few months and find yourself struggling, our troubleshooting guide will help you answer the question: “Why can’t I find a job?”

Why Can’t I Find A Job? Our Troubleshooting Guide

What to do if…you’re sending out applications but hearing nothing back

Often, this part of looking for a job can feel the most exasperating. Especially if you’re applying for jobs in high volumes. If this is the case, then it’s time to look at a few different things:

  • The type of jobs you’re applying for
  • Your applications
  • Your CV/Cover letter
  • Your level of experience

Are you applying for the right kind of jobs?

Many job adverts will give you a very clear idea of the kind of person they are looking for. This will include:

  • Essential/Desired qualifications
  • Essential/Desired experience

Before you begin applying for a job, make a list of your skills, qualifications and experiences and make sure they match what the job advert is looking for.

Are you tailoring your CV and cover letter to the job role?

The key to getting seen is to stand out. And that starts with tailoring your CV and cover letter for the job you are applying for.

But how do you do this? The best place to start is to take a copy of the job advert and person specification and highlight all of the skills and experience that you already have. When you’ve done this, make sure you put these into your CV. For example, if an essential skill for the role is ‘communication,’ make sure this is detailed in your personal statement and skills section of your CV.

This may seem time-consuming, but matching your skills to those in the job advert will help you stand out from the crowd. You might even decide to do a little bit of research into the company and include any information about them you find interesting in your cover letter. For example, if you find out the company won an award recently, you may say in your cover letter that you felt encouraged to apply because of their recent recognition within the industry.

You don’t need to go into too much detail here, but if you make it clear that you are genuinely interested in the role and have taken the time to customise your CV for them, you’re more likely to get a response.

Are you explaining gaps in employment on your CV?

Many people have gaps in their CV. But if you don’t explain them, an employer only has their imagination to fill in the gaps, which can work against you. If you have been out of work for a few years due to a health issue, having children, a career break, or any other reason, make sure you explain this both in your CV and cover letter.

What to do…if you aren’t getting past the interview stage

If you are getting offered interviews, chances are you’re doing all the right things in your CV and cover letter. But what do you do when you’re consistently not successful following an interview?

Are you preparing answers to common interview questions?

There are many interview questions that you can prepare answers for. Take some time to sit down and think about how you might answer certain questions with the job advert in mind. In fact, you can use the job advert to prepare answers that highlight your key skills, giving you the edge on interview day.

Common interview questions include:

  • Tell us about yourself
  • What skills and experience can you bring to the business?
  • Can you give an example of a time you have shown excellent communication skills?
  • Why should we hire you?
  • What makes you best for the role over other candidates?

Of course, you can never truly know what an interviewer will ask on the day. But you can be prepared with a bank of examples that show off your skills, experience and qualifications in the best light.

Are you researching the company beforehand?

Researching the company you are interviewing for is essential. This is because it shows you are genuinely interested in the role and the business. Knowing more about the company and the role means you can communicate your skills and experience better in the interview. Researching a business also gives you an insight into whether it is a good fit for you, and will help you to come up with questions to ask an interviewer at the end of your meeting with them.

Are you asking questions at the end of the interview?

Much like researching the company before an interview, asking questions at the end of an interview shows that you are really interested in the job. As well as this, it also gives you more information on the role and duties, helping you make a decision on whether a role is right for you. Don’t forget, you’re interviewing the company too, so it’s important to ask questions!

Questions can include:

  • What are the day-to-day responsibilities of the role?
  • What does the ideal person for this role look like?
  • What are the next steps?
  • What is it like to work here?

Having one or two questions prepared will help you to confidently answer when your interviewer asks: “Do you have any questions?”.

Get help with your job search

At Building Better Opportunities in Stafford & South Staffordshire, we can help you find employment, prepare for interviews and write your CV and cover letter. With our personalised programs, we can help you build your skills, experience and confidence with a view to supporting you to live a full, happy and balanced life.

To find out more, you can come and see us at any of our drop-in sessions in and around Stafford and South Staffordshire without making an appointment. Alternatively, if you would like to find out more about how we can help you, just give us a call on 01902 696 228 and speak to one of our friendly advocates or fill in the form below for a callback.