The structure of the jobs market is changing, with competition amongst candidates becoming increasingly fierce and technology providing new ways to help you build your future career. To be successful in your job hunt in today’s world, you need to take your development and career plan into your own hands to achieve your desired outcomes. Here, we share five tips to help you be successful in getting your next sporting opportunity.
The start of your job search can be a daunting process, but with the right plan of action, it doesn’t have to be. Start by defining your career goals and the type of career you’re looking to develop. Think about this in the context of the exact roles, companies and specifically the skills required and do some research into the industries (and job types) that appeal to you the most.
"Start by defining your career goals and the type of career you’re looking to develop."
This will help you define your career goals and help you refine your job search to support these. Through this process you will uncover what skills and attributes you'll need to develop in the short and long term and position yourself to achieve your goals. Find opportunities that appeal to you the most, being selective based on your current skills and ambitions. Once this is in place, determine how long you will spend researching and searching for roles and whether you’re being realistic in your approach. Creating a plan with measured steps will help you be most effective. Create a schedule and a spreadsheet of potential opportunities and companies ranked by preference, setting time aside to build your plan that will be of benefit throughout your job search process, now and in the future.
Now that you’ve defined your career goals and the core skills required to take you there, take time to reflect and identify the key skills you need to develop to support your career journey. If your chosen career is specialised, such as digital marketing or data analytics, what are the core competencies (soft and hard) employers are specifically looking for in candidates? Think about the personal and professional development you can undertake to help you bridge this gap. What online training courses can you can do? Are there work experience or volunteering opportunities relevant to your chosen industry? These actions will ensure you build your knowledge and employability, tailor your CV to the role, and stand out to employers in a competitive candidate marketplace.
Today, job searches are a digital affair, with a host of ways to find your next job that go way beyond traditional methods. The value organisations place on CV’s is declining, in part due to 43% of companies undergoing digital transformation and technology being the enabler in revolutionising the age old hiring process. Recruiters are becoming more focused on cultural fit and finding more advanced ways to screen candidates. It’s therefore crucial to adapt your job search to fit this, and a great place to start is by optimising your LinkedIn profile. Make sure your photo, headline, work experience, education and your skills are up to date, which will help enhance your professional profile to the outside world. With many vacancies on LinkedIn offering “easy apply” that doesn’t require the use of CV’s, ensuring your profile is relevant and stands out, is an important way to demonstrate your skills and experience to employers and help you get their attention and stand out from other applications.
Whilst job boards are still a useful tool, getting creative in your search can help you find more specific roles. With 91% of employers using social media in their recruitment efforts make sure you’re following companies you’re interested in and keep an eye out for any available job postings. Alternatively, research the company you want to work for and reach out to hiring managers directly, or regularly post on LinkedIn to seek out opportunities that may come from your network. These tips will demonstrate a more unique approach and will help you catch the attention of the hiring companies you wish to work for.
"Research the company you want to work for and reach out to hiring managers directly, or regularly post on LinkedIn to seek out opportunities that may come from your network."
If you can’t quite find the job you’re looking for in the sports industry, sign up to our jobs alerts to optimise your job search and ensure you’re one of the first to receive personalised notifications tailored to your specific job criteria.
Don’t underestimate the power of networking and building relationships when you embark on your job search. The sports industry in particular is a very “people” focused industry and is interconnected, meaning the people you connect and build relationships with will be of significant help throughout your career journey, but they key is staying active and engaged with your network. As previously mentioned, a standard job application using a CV and cover letter is becoming outdated and impersonal, meaning networking may be a more valuable approach. With 80% of job vacancies never advertised, building a high-quality network may be the best way to make yourself known to recruiters and discover your next opportunity.Whilst informal networking with family or friends about any careers or job openings may be a good place to start, make sure to focus most of your networking efforts on finding like-minded professionals closely connected to the industry you’re interested in. LinkedIn provides the perfect setup for this, allowing you to connect with potential employers, raise awareness of the job you’re searching for and provides the opportunity for those in your existing network to endorse your skills. Start by building a list of existing and potential connections and determine who you want to reach out too. This may be as simple as starting a conversation on a post or requesting to connect with them. This creates an opportunity to reach out and let them know your specific career goals and see if they can help you achieve them. However, remember that networking should be seen as a two-way process, so it’s important to try and show you have something to offer them.
"Focus most of your networking efforts on finding like-minded professionals closely connected to the industry you’re interested in."
Another great tool is the Global Sports website. It has the obvious advantage of being specific to sport, and opening a Global Jobs account connects you to sporting organisations regularly seeking to recruit in the international sports industry.
While searching for a job can be overwhelming, keeping a positive and optimistic mindset throughout the process is important to your success. Remember to get creative with where you search and remain confident and open minded to new opportunities. Lastly, make sure to schedule time for activities outside of job searching to keep a balance and reduce your stress levels.
We spoke to Lindi Ngwenya, Director at Sisu Sports Management, to understand how she become the founder of the company...Read more
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