Don't be fooled by five outdated job search tactics.
By Angela Rose for Hcareers.com
Times change—and so do job search tactics. What may have been necessary or effective a decade ago could now hinder your chances of landing that next hospitality job. Consider the following outdated approaches to avoid if you want to improve the probability of securing a new position.
1. Postponing the job search until you’re laid off or fed up.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS), the average number of years with a single employer for workers between the ages of 25 to 34 is 3.2 years. For workers within the leisure and hospitality industry, average tenure drops to 2.4 years regardless of age. A desire to climb the next rung on your career ladder is natural, and thanks to internet job boards like Hcareers.com, it’s easy to post a resume and browse new restaurant and hotel opportunities during your off hours while still working for your current employer.
2. Focusing on hospitality employers who are actively hiring.
If you really want to work for that up and coming Thai restaurant downtown or the swank hotel in the business district, but, they aren’t currently advertising job openings, approach the hiring manager anyway. As you already know, there’s always turnover in the hospitality industry as younger workers go back to school, mid-range workers move on to their next opportunity, and older workers retire. When a job vacancy becomes available, the hiring manager will already have your resume in hand.
3. Limiting your resume to one page.
If you’re just getting started in hospitality, your resume will naturally be shorter than that of a veteran with 20 years of experience. However, you don’t have to limit the information you include to restaurant or hotel experience. Think about the transferable skills you’ve gained outside the industry. For example, if you spent several years working in the "drive-up" teller window at a busy bank, you’ve learned to maintain accuracy under pressure. If you have tons of truly relevant accomplishments to share, you can extend your resume onto a second page.
4. Updating a resume from 10 years ago.
While it might be easier to dust off that old resume and add your last position, consider giving the entire document an overhaul. Submitting a resume with an ‘objective’ at the top will date you faster than ‘shrimp cocktail’ dates a restaurant menu. Instead, include a ‘skills summary’ or an introductory paragraph focused on what you can do for the company. While you’re at it, remove ‘References available on request’ from the bottom. Employers assume you can provide references so stating it just takes up space.
5. Assuming no phone call means they’ve filled the job.
The hospitality industry is a busy one. If that hotel or restaurant is hiring, they are probably operating with a limited staff—and the hiring manager may be filling in as a result. Make a phone call, or send an email to follow-up on every resume you submit. However, remember that persistence does not mean pestering. If you still don’t receive a response, move on to your next opportunity.
According to the BLS, over the past 12 months, the leisure and hospitality industry added 406,000 jobs, and food services and drinking places accounted for 80 percent of the job growth. The industry added 390,000 jobs in 2013 and has fully recovered from the most recent employment downturn. This is good news for anyone interested in a restaurant or hotel career because it means opportunities should be plentiful—especially if you avoid these outdated job search tactics.
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About the Author
Angela Rose researches and writes about job search strategy, career management, hiring trends, and workplace issues for Hcareers.com
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