No matter how high up on the career ladder you are, securing a new job is never easy. Let's run through five of the best ways to stay organized and keep track of your high-level job search.
Carrying out a job search is always a tough process that requires you to consider multiple things at once, but when it comes to high-level positions, everything gets more complicated. In most cases, you'll be applying for various positions at once and be at a different stage in the process for each one. There's a lot to juggle. However, it's possible to stay on top of everything — you just need to establish the right systems.
Let's run through five of the best ways to stay organized and keep track of your high-level job search.
1. Choose quality over quantity
The easiest way to organize your job search comes before you even start filling out applications: Making the decisions to keep things simple and intentional. It's going to be far easier to keep track of five job applications than 20, and the great thing is that choosing quality over quantity often means you land a role more quickly anyway.
When you're a fresh graduate trying to secure your first job, it might be tempting to file hundreds of jobs across different sectors and roles — but once you reach a senior point in your career where you've found your niche, there's no reason to do this anymore. Your skills and experience will be most valuable to the organization it matches most closely, and it's unlikely there'll be dozens of suitable openings at any given time.
So, be selective about the positions you put time and effort into applying to. This will make every other step of the job search process so much easier.
2. Track everything on a spreadsheet
Even if you limit yourself to just a few jobs, it can be tricky to stay on top of everything. Each application you're completing comes with different contacts, varying job requirements and dates to keep track of. You might be capable of holding all that info in your head, but why should you have to when there's an easy alternative?
Instead, use Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets to create a spreadsheet that keeps track of everything you need to know.
Remember to include the following pieces of information:
- Company name
- Name of your primary contact at the company (and their details)
- Date you applied
- The current stage of the application process
- Any upcoming interviews or deadlines
- Reminders (such as needing to send a task before an interview or a thank-you note)
This might sound simple, but it can be surprisingly effective when applied properly. The next time you get a phone call you suspect could be related to a job application, you can quickly get the spreadsheet up on your computer screen to ensure that you're not left scratching your head.
3. Use a digital calendar
Are you the kind of person who uses their calendar app (whether it's Google Calendar, Apple Calendar or a more niche choice) intermittently? It's time to start taking things to the next level — a digital calendar should be your best friend when trying to stay organized during a job search.
Add in all your interviews and screening calls as soon as you find out about them, and make a habit of checking your calendar at the start of each day and week. If you're working a job while searching for your next position, also be sure to add in any meetings or obligations with your current employer so you don't have any awkward mix-ups.