Planning and organising your job search

Illustrative representation of Planning and organising your job search

During your job search, you will probably submit a number of applications. Get organised so you can keep track of the different jobs you apply for. 

1. Treat your job search like a job

Set aside a desk or other workspace where you can research job vacancies, update résumés and send out applications. You’ll be more productive if you have a dedicated work area that is ready to use.

2. Make a schedule

Book in some time every day to research vacancies, update and submit résumés, cover letters and applications. Make sure you respond to emails and phone calls from employers as soon as possible.

3. Use tools and apps to help plan and organise your job search activities

  • You can create a spreadsheet in Word and Excel to track who and when you have sent applications.
  • You can use your calendar to set reminders of when to follow up employers about applications or for interviews.
  • There are a number of mobile apps (some are free) that can help you keep on top of your job search.
  • Some job search websites also offer built-in tools to help you keep track of your applications.

To research the types of tools that are available, type ‘job search organiser’ into your internet search engine.

4. Set up a filing system for your job applications

Think of how to name folders on your computer (e.g. by employer name, date or by job role) to make them easy to find. File your tailored application with the job ad/your research on the employer. This will help you keep track of the jobs you have applied for and what you have provided to each employer. This also means you can easily access the relevant documents when employers contact you about interviews.

5. Manage your emails

Most of your correspondence with employers will be by email, so try to read and respond to emails as soon as they arrive. Keep your job search emails separate from your day-to-day emails to make sure you don't miss anything. Make sure the email address you use for your job search sounds professional, for example tsmith@email.com.au.

6. Be ready for requests for further information, interviews or a job offer

Make sure you have a copy of your résumé, your tax file number (TFN) and bank account details on hand. Always have your interview clothes clean and pressed in case you are asked to attend an interview at short notice.

Other tools that can help you:

…Or you can browse Job Jumpstart for other ideas and suggestions of what to do next.