The prospect of starting your search for the next contract is never a particularly appealing one. Every un-billed day hits you hard. For someone at £500 a day, a two week gap between contracts has the same impact as dropping your day rate by a whopping £25 for a year!

The difficulty with search is exacerbated if you have been off the market for a while. Your standard answers to a recruiter’s standard questions all need to be rehearsed and updated to reflect your new experience. It can often seem like a mammoth, uphill struggle lies ahead and there can be a lot of confusion around the most suitable strategy to use to find a new role. You don’t particularly want to spend hours of your time each day searching for new jobs, so how do you make the best use of your resources?

Submitting CV to Recruiter Database

Most recruiter’s databases are full of stale information; out of date contact details and expectations – to name just a couple. The idea of sending your CV out to every recruiter you know in the off chance they have something suitable may seem like a sensible approach, but this is often a wasted effort. Pre-emptive applications, whether on a job sites or recruiter database are often overlooked so it is better to focus efforts elsewhere. Remember, your CV is irrelevant to a recruiter until such time he is commissioned by a client on a search for your skills.

Vacancy Driven Market

It is highly unlikely that a recruiter will start an active search campaign for you, unless you are in a top management role. Chances are they wont be able to recall you if a right role for you does come up a few weeks after they have met you. This is because they probably met six other candidates with different skills just after they met you. And the human mind has a finite capacity for recollection. It is far more likely that a recruiter will start to sift through their database when they have an active role to fill. It is even more likely that they will bypass their database completely, and put out a fresh advert. This is down to a lack of confidence in how up-to-date or useful the database is. And also because, the best candidates may not even be aware of the need to register with the database.

How to Find a Job

There are much more pro-active ways of finding a job, which make better use of your time. You may want to speak to previous colleagues to see if there are any potential opportunities available for you. A refresh of your CV on job sites can sometimes be beneficial, as recruiters often check to see when candidates were last active. The more active you have been, the more likely they are to approach you about a role. LinkedIn is one of the most powerful tools around for job searching, as these are used by recruiters, hiring managers and candidates. This is why it is important to keep your profile up-to-date with the relevant keywords, as the right LinkedIn subscription will pull your details through to the recruiter. Registering on a few job sites, the most popular ones, is also useful.