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Home > Blog: Job Seeker Tips > Does Your Job Search Take More than 18 Minutes a Day?

Does Your Job Search Take More than 18 Minutes a Day?

Several weeks ago, I found a post that focused on an apparent claim by the U.S. Department of Labor that the average job seeker spends 18 minutes a day looking for a job. (I say apparent because, like the author of the original post, I searched the agency's web site and couldn't find any reference to such a statistic.)

There must be more behind that simple statement. But in its simplicity, it's bound to tick off anyone who's employed, retired, or unemployed and busting their butts for hours each day to find another job.

First, if the number refers only to the unemployed, I just don't buy it. But if you throw everyone– unemployed and employed–into the mix, it just might make sense. After all, how much job searching can you do if you're working a full-time job, coming home to a family, and spending quality time with them?

So what would an average day seem like for a typical unemployed job seeker? Here's a rough estimate:

  • Searching job boards and corporate web sites: 30 minutes
  • Contacting people you know about potential leads: 45 minutes
  • Working on a resume and cover letter to respond to a job posting: 1 hour
  • Working on a resume and cover letter to respond to a second job posting: 1 hour
  • Following up on previous job inquiries: 30 minutes

That's nearly four hours. Of course, that can vary depending largely on the number of job postings you're answering, how deep into your network you're going, and the current shape of your resume.

But it all begs the question: How much effort do you put into your job search on an average day?

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