Looking for a job when you are above 35 or have several years of experience under your belt is a whole different ball game from the usual job search for fresh graduates or persons with a few years experience.
With the statistics putting the number of currently unemployed Nigerians at 20.3 million according to Dr Temi Kale the Statistician General of the Federation, it is more than ever before a bigger challenge to get mid to top level job opportunities. These statistics, corroborated by the Nigerian Directorate of Employment Director General Mallam Abubakar Mohammed represents 23.9% of Nigeria’s population. The competition in the market place is indeed fierce!
So what happens if you are out there with a bunch of qualifications and experience behind you and looking for executive or mid level management job opportunities? Here are ways you can increase your chances of landing an executive level position even as opportunities for high paying, top level jobs shrink further.
Exploit Your Contacts and Network
If you have over five years works experience behind you chances are that you have several networks you can exploit in your job search. The advantage you have of being experienced is that you must have met several persons in the past who may be in a position to help. These include former bosses, supervisors, colleagues, clients etc. Think about your contacts who can potentially refer you to opportunities and don’t hesitate to ask. Apply for open positions. Data available shows that many jobs are open until the right candidate(s) are found and then the jobs are more or less no more vacant. Early applicants always stand better chances especially for jobs that require certain levels of experience.
Have Another Look at That CV
At Ngcareers we noticed a common trend in the CVs of most experienced job seekers. They list all past work experiences whether relevant or not and use the same CV to apply to several different jobs. To make your CV have the right impact for the type of job you are aiming to get, be sure to create a CV that highlights your past experiences that are relevant and useful to your current job aspirations. If you have worked for over 8 years there is no need including your NYSC work as a teacher in a junior secondary school when you are applying for an Operations Manager position. Instead, include all previous job experiences that will lend strength to your ability as a potentially good manager. This leads us to stating the obvious; ‘When you are Seeking for Highly Experienced Job Positions Never Ever Use the Same CV for Different Job Applications’. Each application should be with your CV but fine-tuned to project your relevant skills, qualifications and experience for that particular job.
Embark on Strategic Skills Upgrade
One way to make it easier for you to land jobs as a mid level or experienced job seeker is to do a check of your current qualifications, skills and knowledge. Are they still competitive enough or do you need to embark on some refresher courses? If your CV shows how active you have been in improving yourself you stand a better chance when submitting applications for such experience level jobs
Get Strategic With Your Online Networking
Nigeria is certainly witnessing a move to online networking platforms. While there is Facebook, the two online platforms we have found more practically useful for individuals looking to network for career opportunities are LinkedIn and Twitter. With LinkedIn you can easily find individuals working at any company and connect with them. The key here is to make your connections professional. Share useful information and make polite requests when the need arises. Don’t ever start to ask your connections on LinkedIn or the people you follow on Twitter to give you a job. If possible, try to get them become familiar with you at a professional level then request that they tip you with information on any opportunities in so and so area. Many of the experienced level job positions today are filled through back channels and insider tips.
I hope you found some of these tips helpful.
Photo Credit: elev8.com
Paul Eze is the Co-Founder of Ngcareers a top job search and career site in Nigeria publishing thousands of jobs daily for renowned companies and recruiters. Follow on Twitter @Ngcareers