Looking for a job? Avoid these 5 Big Mistakes!


Looking for a job can be frustrating. Competition has become really tough. There is usually someone better than you, more qualified than you, and with more experience than you, applying for the same position/s as you are.
looking for a job

Besides the competition, as individuals, we usually go about looking for a job the wrong way and make mistakes throughout our journey as job seekers. Some of the mistakes we make are minor, but because both the systems and recruiters have become meticulous, these are never overlooked and are probably the reason why you may still be struggling to find employment.

The First Big Mistake when looking for a job

Applying for roles you are not qualified for. Firstly, chances are your CV will not even pass through ATS because you do not meet the minimum requirements and if it does make it to the hands of the recruiter, they are not going to waste their time trying to find a reason to invite you over for an interview because there are other applicants that meet job specifications.

Ask yourself: Are you an 85 percent match for the position or a 10 percent match? “If it’s a 10 percent match for skills and experience, don’t bother,” says Jessica Holbrook

The Second Big Mistake

This thing of having a one size fits all CV and cover letter could be another reason you are not landing your ideal job. You need to put in the time and customize your CV for every role you are applying for, that way the recruiter will be able to match your skills to the skills they are looking for and most probably increase your chances of being called in for an interview.

A one size fits all resume means the resume will have to be very general, and often times, vague. If you’re applying for a marketing position, your resume cannot include all your work experience as a cashier. 

The Third Big Mistake

Job seekers fail at networking. Building relationships when trying to find a job can put you way ahead of the competition. But many would rather sit back and wait for the recruiter to reach out. How about you professionally reach out first? Some job sites usually provide you with a platform to message the hiring manager, go ahead, check the progress and status of your application instead of just sitting back and waiting for that “We regret to inform you” message.

Research states that some 80% of jobs are landed through networking.

The Fourth Big Mistake

Social media! Your online presence. I cannot stress how important this is when you are trying to find a job. What you do online can have positive or negative implications for your career development. To get a sense of the kind of person that you are, recruiters will go online and check you out, be smart, be professional, and be very careful of the kind of content that you share with the world, it can make or break your career.   

A social media screening is usually done prior to employment, when a candidate is applying for a job. It involves researching a prospect’s social media profiles and their activity, including what they post, like and comment on.

The Fifth and Biggest Mistake Ever

The biggest of all mistakes throughout your journey to finding a job is being unprepared. I mean you have done everything right, and you finally land yourself that interview, but you have no clue what the company does, you did not do your research, you are not presentable, you arrive late for your interview, and you have no idea how to sell yourself. That is unacceptable. Yes, you are nervous, nerves are good, but pull yourself together and go get what you have worked for.

Competition is tough, and you might not get the job, but it cannot be because you failed to research the company and properly articulate yourself in the interview.

Nothing is as stressful as finding a job, but if you are guilty of some of the things mentioned in this article, make the necessary changes, you will reap the benefits.

Click here to download your free 2022 Interview Prep Pack

Article updated 16 August 2022.

Happy Holidays

Elite CV Professional CV Writers