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Get Organized and Get Hired

Preparing a resume and sending it to employers can be a challenging task unto itself. Following up on those submissions adds yet more time-consuming work, especially if you’re sending several resumes at about the same time.

That’s why it helps to become organized if you put your job search in high gear. But how you keep track of your resume submissions may depend on how technologically savvy you are. In which of the following categories would you fit?

The spreadsheet master. You know spreadsheet software such as Microsoft Excel and you use it to manually track the positions and companies you applied to, when you sent resumes, when you followed up with phone calls, and the names of the people you contacted. You may even use your email client (e.g., Microsoft Outlook, AOL, Lotus Notes) to remind you to follow up with an employer via phone or to meet a contact in your network for lunch.

Living and dying by the PDA. You can track all your activities – and issue reminders to yourself – on your Palm Pilot, Blackberry, Treo, or some other gadget, and synchronize it with your computer. This way, you’re up to date at all times and don’t need to wait until the end of the day to manually enter the information into your home computer. And you may even have the ability to send a resume right from your device, assuming you have access to the computer, database, or storage unit in which the resume resides.

The web as personal assistant. Sites such as Pongo Resume offer web-based software tools that can track your job search activities and send you reminders to complete certain tasks and schedule follow-up activities. This eliminates the need for spreadsheets that need manual updating – and you can access the data from your PDA.

So whichever method you use, staying organized is essential to managing a successful and effective job hunt.


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