An active job search is both energizing and draining. It is simultaneously hopeful and demoralizing. Because of its intellectual, emotional, and physical demands, taking care of ourselves during a job search is important. Setting weekly intentions, staying well organized, and tracking progress can help limit stress for job seekers and make the process much more hopeful, direct, and accessible.
Set Weekly Intentions & Stay Organized
Pick a day to begin each job search week. Mondays are a clear choice for some folks because it’s the beginning of a work week. For others, it could be Saturday or Sunday so that a weekend is woven into the schedule. On that first day of your job search week, consider the upcoming week’s sprint and what workflow will work best with other commitments throughout your week. Write your to-do list somewhere easy to access. Edit frequently. What does your schedule look like for the week? Where are there a few 1–2-hour blocks of focus time for 10-20 job applications? Do you have interviews or networking conversations scheduled? Time blocking can help with daily and weekly planning.
Capturing job search activity data helps proactively prepare for inevitable interviews (and yes, they are inevitable if your application materials are strong and you are ~65%+ qualified for the roles you’re applying to)! Tracking our actions is a great way to honor the lifts we’re overcoming while noticing forward momentum. Tracking efforts creates data that informs our job search strategies, prevents high-volume efforts from becoming overwhelming, and seeing accomplishments (both small and large) represented visually is motivating.
Job Search Data to Track
- Job title you’ve applied to
- Company you applied to
- Source where you found listing
- Date you applied
- Date you followed up with a recruiter
- Job description (ideal to either screenshot this or copy & paste text into a doc you save so that you can reference this description while prepping for interview rounds)
- Interview schedules & contacts
- Salary range you have researched for each company you’re a finalist with
- Offer details including all elements of compensation from salary, PTO, and insurance to equity and retirement contributions
- Application to interview conversion rate
- Job search goals: reach, target, & safety job titles
- Questions you’ve asked during each interview round
- First impressions following an interview
- Subjects / themes to craft future interview questions around
- Names of folks you want to connect with to learn from and grow your network
Efficient Data Tracking Tools
At Pathrise, job-seeking fellows use the Pathrise Pipeline to track all the above data daily and weekly. It’s a great way to synchronize the information on one platform. Additional tools folks can consider using: Google Sheets, Excel, or Job Search Trackers / Apps with $ubscriptions / paywall$.
Take Care of Yourself & Ask for Help as Needed
While staying organized, intentional, and data-informed, make sure you’re taking care of yourself by getting enough sleep, eating well, and protecting time for some fun and relaxation throughout your week as well! Need help with the integration of all of your competing priorities? Reach out to your support network. Know that there are many job search experts at Pathrise ready to help!