You've been applying to jobs online for months, but you're not seeing any results. What's going on? It could be that you're making some common mistakes in your job search. You can avoid these mistakes and start landing the interviews for the jobs that you want. The following are the common mistakes people are making in looking for a job in 2022 and what you should do instead.

Not Building an ATS-Optimized Resume

Over 97% of all Fortune 500 companies use an applicant tracking system (ATS) to sort and filter their candidates for open jobs. Nearly 70% of all employers use the ATS as well. So, if you are applying to jobs in 2022, your resume is going through the ATS.

Most people don't realize this. As a result, over 70% of resumes are automatically rejected by the ATS - never to be seen by a person.

The ATS is run by keywords and job titles. This means that the words on your resume are key to getting through the system. And, these programs can't read graphics or heavy formatting for the most part. Your resume can be holding you back if you have applied to several jobs that you are absolutely qualified for and haven't landed a single interview (or have seen a series of automatic rejections).

Want to make sure that your resume is optimized for the applicant tracking systems? Have one of our resume writing experts analyze it for free.

Not Being Aggressive Enough

The current market is competitive. One of the most common mistakes by jobseekers in 2022 is underestimating how many jobs they will have to apply to. The Great Resignation prompted nearly 40% of the US to look for a new job. This means that a lot of people are looking to make a change. There are a lot of jobs to apply to, but there is also a lot of competition. As a result, you will have to be more aggressive than ever to make a change.

Applying to jobs requires consistency, quality, and volume. You cannot get anywhere in the current talent market if you don't balance all three of these things. Meaning that you must consistently apply to jobs (not just sporadically) and that you need to do so with sufficient quality and volume. Jobs and talent are moving quickly in 2022, so you cannot wait around. Instead, you can and should apply to the jobs that you are qualified for in order to make a change.

Underestimating the Role of LinkedIn

Most people know they should use LinkedIn for their job search, but most people don't really know why. Underestimating the importance of LinkedIn in your job search is another big reason why you aren't landing a new job in 2022.

LinkedIn matters for a couple of reasons. First, the ATS and other HR systems are using the data on LinkedIn to evaluate you as a candidate. These programs are integrated with LinkedIn and pulls your information through to evaluate whether you are a fit for the opening or the company culture. If you don't have a profile or if you have an outdated profile, you will show up as unqualified for the jobs that you are applying to.

Second, the people involved in the hiring process are using LinkedIn to evaluate you in the hiring process. This is true even if you don't apply for the job through LinkedIn. People will look at your profile to learn more about you, your experience, and your network. Not having a profile or having inconsistent messaging on LinkedIn can cost you the job.

Avoid this common mistake by investing time in building a strong LinkedIn profile. This means matching up the message on your profile with your resume. Spend the time to fully complete your profile and make sure that you are putting all of the information in the right places. This will make sure that your information gets through to the people and HR systems in the right way throughout your jobsearch.

Underestimating the Value of Networking

Many people spend a lot of time applying for jobs, but they leave little time for networking. This is a big mistake.

Only 11% of jobs are filled by people that apply to those countless postings on job boards. But, employers report that over 40% of jobs are filled by referrals. Why? In part, because this avenue costs less and because the candidates that come through referrals are known by people that are proven in the organization already.

As a result, employers are strengthening these referral programs. They provide financial incentives to existing employees and have even set up entirely separate systems to track employee referrals. This enables companies to fast-track those referrals in the hiring process.

So, if you feel like you are getting stuck churning out countless resumes, you probably are. Redirect some of the time applying to networking. This can be challenging for some people, but it really does make a huge difference. And, if you are trying to change careers, that referral will be key in getting the people to look past some of your weaknesses on paper to see what you actually bring to the table.

Not Following Up

Another common mistake in job searching in 2022 is failing to follow up on your applications. It can be challenging to follow up on applications when applying to a bigger organization or when you don't have a contact.

This is where LinkedIn and other social media sites come in handy. You can use those systems to find people and connections that can serve as your internal advocate. But, you have to keep track of where you are applying and do the legwork. Again, simply applying and crossing your fingers isn't enough in 2022. So, avoid this common mistake by building and following a strategy for your job search.

Staying Local

A lot changed during the pandemic, including the types of companies that you can work for and how you do that work. If you are only looking locally, chances are that you are missing out on a lot of jobs and great companies that are out there.

Instead, broaden up your search in terms of geography if you are someone that can work remotely or in a hybrid arrangement. Make sure to read the job description before applying to be sure that you can do the job remotely. And, build a list of remote-friendly companies that you want to work at to watch for the openings when they come up.

Applying to the Wrong Jobs

Build the perfect ATS resume, apply to a ton of jobs, and still not land the interview? This could be a sign that you are applying to the wrong types of jobs. It could be that you don't have the skills or experience that is required for these types of jobs in the current market.

Be honest in reviewing the jobs that you applied to and consider how you stack up. If you aren't hitting at least 70% of the requirements outlined in those job descriptions, then you may be aiming too high. Or, if you are way over the requirements outlined in the job description, it could also be that you are aiming too low and are getting rejected for being over-qualified - which is viewed similarly by most recruiters as being under-qualified.

Readjusting your aim isn't a bad thing. It is always better to evaluate your aim sooner rather than later if it isn't working out. But, trying is always key to finding the right types of jobs for your skills and career goals.

At the same time, you don't have to stay stuck. Use the feedback and rejection to find those weaknesses and work on them. Fill your skills gap or commit to gaining the experience you need to make the change you want.

Using the Wrong Message

You may have built the perfect message on your resume, but it may not be the right one for the jobs that you are actually applying to. Remember that a resume is simply a marketing piece for the jobs that you want using prior experience to illustrate your qualifications. And, on average, a person skimming your resume makes up their mind about you as a candidate in 6 seconds. So, if they don't immediately see what they want on the resume, then they will move on to other candidates.

This means that using a generic resume or cover letter will get you generic results. ATS and people are looking for candidates to fill a particular role at a particular company. How they view your experience will be through the lens of their particular needs. So, if you don't tailor your message, you won't the interview.

This is particularly important if you are looking for different types of jobs at the same time. You can build template resumes for each of these types. This will make it easier to customize and apply to the different types of jobs that you will pursue. It will also make it easier for the person skimming your resume to see you in their open role.

Failing to Prepare for the Interview

You may have built the perfect message on your resume, but it may not be the right one for the jobs that you are actually applying to. Remember that a resume is simply a marketing piece for the jobs that you want using prior experience to illustrate your qualifications. And, on average, a person skimming your resume makes up their mind about you as a candidate in 6 seconds. So, if they don't immediately see what they want on the resume, then they will move on to other candidates.

This means that using a generic resume or cover letter will get you generic results. ATS and people are looking for candidates to fill a particular role at a particular company. How they view your experience will be through the lens of their particular needs. So, if you don't tailor your message, you won't the interview.

This is particularly important if you are looking for different types of jobs at the same time. You can build template resumes for each of these types. This will make it easier to customize and apply to the different types of jobs that you will pursue. It will also make it easier for the person skimming your resume to see you in their open role.

Not Applying Lessons Learned

Repeating the same mistakes over and over will result in the same disappointing results. If you have been looking for a while without the desired results, it is probably time to make a change in how you are approaching your job search. This means doing a top-down review of everything that you are doing and your message.

Ask for help if you can't find the gaps in your message or approach. The outside perspective can be invaluable to spot things that you never even thought of in the process. For some, this can mean an overhaul of their resume and for others, it can mean accountability in their job search.

Whatever your gaps are, consider reaching out for expert help to find them sooner rather than later if you want to land that new job in 2022.

Giving Up

You can't land a new job if you give up. You have to keep applying to jobs, networking, and interviewing to make the change. It can be easy to give up and just accept what is comfortable. But, if you don't put the work in with consistency, then you cannot know what options are out there for you.

Don't give up. Job searching isn't easy, but landing a new job in 2022 is still possible. Put the time in and stay flexible in the process. Ask for help when you are stuck and it will pay off.


Our team of professional resume writers, expert LinkedIn profile builders, and career coaches would be happy to help unstick your job search. Schedule your free consultation today.

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