No one particularly enjoys job hunting, it’s just something that needs to be done if you want to keep the money flowing in and keep a roof over your head. Technology of the modern world has opened up more prospects and made searching a little easier, but it’s also made things seriously more competitive. Gone are the days of looking through the local paper for openings (although you actually still can do that in some cases!) and it’s now all about who you know, how technologically competent you are and how good a shape your CV is in.
Whether you’re looking for a long-term position with a construction firm or making more of a name for yourself as an independent tradesman, a few little tricks can make you appear as a much more attractive prospect to potential employers.
Going for jobs with a firm…
First things first; get your CV in line. Try and keep it to a couple of pages, don’t include your date of birth (your age shouldn’t be a factor anyway) and obviously have the most relevant, up to date experience in the most prominent position. Keep the general tone of your CV informative and relatively neutral; it’s just a vessel to get your basic information and experiences across, it needs to be primarily factual, not fancy. If you want to get some personality across, try including a little more you in a cover letter perhaps.
Check your CV for spelling errors and make sure all of your examples of various skill-sets are up to date; examples you did as an apprentice of or during university aren’t really going to impress a decade later!
A good thing to keep in mind is that, like a lot of things, going for your dream position is a numbers game. Check out the job listings, go for anything you think you’d be a good fit for and churn out those applications. You only need to get a couple of interviews and only one of those to say ‘yes’. Get the interview; be on time, polite and yourself.
Going for contracts by yourself…
This can be a little harder then looking for permanent employment and is an on going, painfully constant process. You can either advertise under your own name or you can create a company name, something catchy, individual and ideally contains a couple of keywords to help search engines single you out a little better.
Do your market research; see what competitors are charging for similar jobs and set your prices competitively, don’t undersell yourself though. It’s worth checking out people with similar qualifications to yourself, after all, the more qualified you are, the more your time and skills should be worth.
Get yourself on some listings websites so homeowners can find you; free platforms like Gumtree are a good starting point and then you can move on to some more professional websites with large amounts of traffic moving through them. When someone gives you a call, make sure you’re around to pick up the phone and respond in a good timely manner; people don’t like being ignored or messed around. In short…be professional!
In all honesty, being an individual trader or looking for a job with a larger construction firm will be equally beneficial by adding your name to one of these construction job search platforms. If you want the added bonus of being part of an elite group of people with CSCS certifications, give Construction Helpline a buzz. Take the test relevant to your trade and then anyone searching for you as a trader or employee already has the assurance that you’re a trustworthy, authenticated professional. Construction Helpline will get you booked in for the test you need to certify yourself and get the goods (and the card) that hiring companies are looking for.