Can’t Find a Job After Trying Hard? Here’s why

So you can’t find a job huh? It sucks putting your time into something without seeing any success.

I’ve definitely been there.

We all have.

It’s not just you.

Even if it feels like you’re trying, it might just be misleading. You could be focusing too much on your skills and neglecting your network. Or it might have something to do with how you articulate your thoughts. However, it also might have nothing to do with you at all.

Maybe the company felt that somebody else was a better fit for the job. Or maybe they liked you, but they fell short on funds to hire people. These things do happen, and it’s crucial to be aware of them.

You must understand that sometimes whether or not you get the job is out of your control.

Yet, there will also be times where it is in your control. Many job seekers make a few common mistakes when applying for work. If you are making these mistakes, it’s vital to recognize and avoid them right away.

In this article, I will help share which errors you could be making in the job search and how to get around them to get your dream position.

I Can’t Find a Job, and I Don’t Know What To Do

Before we discuss the potential mistakes you could be making, I want to address a few concerns.

Looking for a job can become overwhelming.

Don’t worry if you’ve reached a point where you feel stuck and don’t know what to do. It’s completely normal, and everyone has felt that way before.

But, you must understand that the worst thing to do is nothing. You must keep working on your skills no matter what. That’s the only way that you’re going to land a job.

For example, what helped me when I struggled to find work was to write this blog. Creativefinancialhelp is like my outlet. It’s also a way to brush up on my writing, blogging, SEO, and social media skills.

I don’t make a ton of money blogging, but I still do it anyway.

You must never stop working, even if it means doing work and not getting paid.

I Can’t Find a Job, and I Need Money

If you can’t find a job but need some cash, I’d suggest getting anything you can. Even now, with Covid-19, there are plenty of places hiring. It’s not beneath you to find a temporary job at a grocery store, or as a delivery driver.

There’s nothing wrong with using one of these jobs as a boost when you need it. In the meantime, continue working on your skills.

It’s not the time to get comfortable and start watching YouTube all day. Always have some kind of side hustle, even while you’re working full-time. Blogging and freelance writing is a good start. You can do them from home, boost your skills, and make some money.

The idea is to use the side hustle as a way to enhance your skills and transition into a better job.

1. You’re Not Applying To Enough Jobs

How many jobs are you applying to?

The quantity of applications is more important than you realize. You can’t expect to apply to one, two, or even five jobs and get hired.

That’s not how it works.

It’s normal for job seekers to send at least 100 applications before they find something. Yes, you read that right, 100. That is even more true if you just graduated from college.

College graduates don’t have a lot of work experience.

So most of them are forced to send at least a hundred applications. There’s no excuse for being lazy. You can’t expect the world to hold your hand in this. Job hunting is competitive, and only the most dedicated will prevail.

A pie chart depicting why most college grads can't find a job. The reason is because employers think they are unprepared for the workforce.
Ere.net has an unfortunate reality for some people looking for work. The data shows that 66% of employers look at new graduates as unprepared for the workplace. That leaves them at a disadvantage.

Most of your applications will get rejected or ignored.

However, it only takes one to get the job. Keep applying and never give up. It doesn’t matter how many times you hear a no.

You must keep at it.

But I Can’t Find a Job Due To Covid

Covid has indeed hit the job market pretty hard.

People can't find a job because of the coronavirus. This chart shows the staggering losses of jobs due to COVID-19.
These appalling numbers are a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic.

If you’re looking for work in the restaurant, retail, or hospitality industry, it’ll be more difficult. Those jobs suffered the most during the pandemic.

But even with Covid, there’s still opportunity.

There are plenty of other jobs out there.

Other businesses like Amazon, grocery stores, and Home Depot are all hiring. Even some restaurants still need workers, despite the pandemic. I’ve seen places adjust to corona rules by focusing on takeout and outdoor dining.

It’s going to be harder to get a job with Covid around, no doubt. But it’s not impossible.

Keep looking, and don’t give up until you find something.

2. Companies Hiring Right Now Require Experience

Okay, so this concern has been around for a while.

The issue comes from the idea that companies today require too much experience for entry-level jobs.

The notion that you need years of experience for an entry-level position sounds ludicrous to many.

I know it’s frustrating.

Most companies aren’t even willing to train workers anymore. It’s getting harder to find work because of that. However, it’s not all doom and gloom. There are many ways to get around this problem.

Remember when I said that blogging helped me build my skills? Think about that as a way of bypassing the experience problem.

For example, let’s say I want to become a freelance writer.

How would I start if I’ve never written anything in my life?

Well, the simple answer is to start writing.

But how?

Through blogging! That is the best way to build experience as a writer. There are also other ways like volunteering, guest blogging, and interning.

The problem is that you’ll likely not get paid for this. Blogging takes a while to make money from. Plus, volunteering and internships will most likely be unpaid as well.

Yet, you’ll still get the experience without having to get the job first.

The point is that paid and unpaid experience makes no difference to employers. If you can do something for free and do it well, then that counts as experience. Nobody is going to refuse someone offering free work.

It’s an opportunity to add experience to your resume when you have none.

3. Your Resume Writing Needs Work

The resume is the most crucial tool of your job application. It tells your employer many things about you as a professional. So this means that your resume writing needs to be top-notch.

But what if it isn’t?

Have you had your resume read by a friend? Did you look to see if there were any spelling or grammar mistakes? Does it seem like a third grader wrote it?

Let me make this clear: If your resume is not perfect, you are shooting yourself in the foot.

How To Write a Good Resume

The resume is the first thing a hiring manager sees. They expect it to be free of errors and a good indicator of your skills.

Here’s what you need to make a great resume:

  • Microsoft Word Draft
  • Run It Through Grammarly And Check For Spelling and Grammar Mistakes
  • Have a Friend or Family Member Read It
  • Link To Your Portfolio or Website
  • Keep it One Page
  • Make The Final Edits
  • Publish As a PDF
A good resume can help if you can't find a job.
Put your name, email address, LinkedIn, phone number, and house address all at the top. Then put your education so that the employer can see it right away. Follow that up with your most relevant experience and continue until the page is filled.

It’s important to have a good layout when writing a resume. You want to show people that you’re a professional. I suggest writing your resume in word as a draft.

Then clean up any mistakes as you proofread.

After that, run it through Grammarly to catch any errors from the first round of edits. Make sure to add links to any websites or portfolios you want the hiring manager to see.

Likewise, try to scrunch it on one page. Nobody is going to read a two page resume.

Once you’ve done that, make the final edits and publish your resume as a PDF. The PDF will ensure that your resume will maintain its’s format once it’s delivered.

4. You Have No Network

Have you ever heard the expression, it’s now what you know but who you know?

Well, there is a lot of truth to that.

This is a chart showing the most peope find work through a network. One of the reasons why people can't find a job is because they have no network.
CNBC wrote an article stating that 70% of jobs are not published or advertised. They also state that nearly 50%-80% of jobs are taken through a network.

Finding a job is more about networking with people than anything else. Hiring managers are really looking for a person they like and can relate to.

Humans are social animals, and we crave that satisfaction. Of course, it’s important to hire a person who knows what they’re doing. Yet, it’s just as vital to hire somebody who gets along with you and the team. Because if they don’t, then the business can be held back by it.

The first step you should do to start networking is to hop on social media.

Websites like Linkedin are a gold mine for networking opportunities.

So are Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Go on these platforms and start following people and businesses you want to work for. Consider cold pitching and introducing yourself right away.

This kind of aggressive networking does work. You just have to do it right and not piss people off in the process.

But I Can’t Find a Job, and Now I’m Depressed

Ok, so you can’t find a job and now suffer from depression.

But are you actually depressed?

I’m no psychiatrist, but I know the difference between depression and just being sad. If you’re down from being unemployed, then that’s normal. However, if you actually think depression is the problem, see a psychiatrist.

Everyone gets sad from time to time. Yet, depression is a much bigger issue. Most people who are out of work are not depressed. If that’s the case, then it’s 100% okay to feel that way.

However, you can’t let it stop you.

It’s necessary to find a way out of that emotional pitfall and get back in the job search. Watch a movie, eat a pizza, or go for a walk. Doing those kinds of things helps me get over feeling down.

Furthermore, think of the end goal. You need to be determined to land that job no matter what.

Whatever glory or riches that you crave is still waiting at the finish line. Keep thinking about them in your head.

Those thoughts can help push you forward.

5. You’re Not Showing Enough Enthusiasm

Have you ever finished an interview thinking that it went well? Did you then realize that the employer never called you back?

How could that be?

How can everything go right in an interview and still go wrong? The answer is most likely enthusiasm. Or should I say a lack thereof?

You see, it’s possible to have all of the knowledge, qualifications, and network to do a job and still get rejected. The biggest reason why this happens is due to a lack of enthusiasm. If the employer feels like you’re not passionate about the job, why should they hire you?

Fortunately, there are many ways around a lack of enthusiasm.

Here are some things you should consider:

  • Smile
  • Know The Company
  • Keep Eye Contact ( For In-Person Interviews)
  • Show Excitement
  • Put That Excitement In Words

I’d say the biggest pro is to focus on your communication skills. If you can communicate your ideas with enough passion, then the hiring managers will like that. They want to feel like you really want the job.

If it doesn’t seem so to them, they’ll give the position to somebody who wants it more.

6. You Aren’t Qualified For The Job

The last and final reason why you can’t find a job is that you aren’t qualified.

Yes, this happens a lot. I’ve seen people applying to the wrong types of jobs all the time. You must pay attention to the type of job and the title. Some job titles are only for senior employees.

Others are for entry-level candidates.

The title of the job does matter, and it tells you how much experience is required. For example, don’t apply for a senior management role if you just graduated college. Instead, look for jobs titled “junior” or “entry-level.”

Do not apply for jobs that require over three years of experience compared to what you currently have.

For instance, if I have 3 years of experience, and the job is asking for someone with 7, I won’t apply. It gets much harder to convince a hiring manager of your qualifications beyond that point.

However, if they asked for four years of experience and I had three, it would be worth applying.

The Best Online Job Search Strategy

A job search strategy is vital to avoid applying for positions in which you don’t qualify. This strategy will be how you tailor your job search to more relevant work.

The first thing you should do in your job search strategy is to find the right places to look for work. There are a few websites that list the best jobs for entry-level workers. Find these websites, and use them whenever you’re looking for work.

Some of these sites include:

Pick a website and then go to the search. It’s a good idea to use all of these sites. You might find jobs on one but not the other, so it’s good to diversify. You need to search for terms that are synonymous with your skills and experience.

All of these titles are considered entry-level:

  • Coordinator
  • Associate
  • Specialist
  • Junior
  • Analyst
  • Assistant
  • Intern
  • Copywriter

You need to be searching for jobs with the above keywords in the title.

A digital marketing coordinator job on LinkedIn. Only 1-2 years of experience is required.
If you can't find a job after trying, specific job sites help.
Make sure to check the experience level to weed out other senior-level job postings.
Google is such a fantastic way to find a job since it posts job postings directly from a company’s website, even if they haven’t posted it themselves.

Finding the right job that fits with your qualifications and experience is important. You’ll find it faster if you properly weed out the jobs that you aren’t qualified for.

Conclusion

The bottom line is that finding a job can be tough. Especially now during a pandemic when millions of people are out of work. However, it’s not impossible. Many people are still finding and securing jobs, even now.

You need to have a plan and stick with it. Focus on improving your writing and networking skills. Those are really the two soft skills you need to get a job.

Secondly, make sure you’re applying for enough jobs. One or two applications are not going to cut it. The job market is competitive, so you need to apply for as many positions as possible.

Thirdly, get some experience in your field by either doing internships or some free work. Remember that sometimes it worth doing work for free, if it means more networking and experience opportunities. At the same time, work on showing more enthusiasm for interviews.

You want to show your interviewers how badly you want the job. Doing so will make you stand out from the competition.

Lastly, don’t get beat up after getting a rejection. Sometimes it takes one hundred nos before receiving a yes. Keep your head high and follow the steps I listed.

Eventually, you’ll get the job you want.

Hey there! I'm Alex, a freelance writer, and blogger. I started my journey towards FI in 2018, when I created this blog. I love talking about blogging, writing, personal finance, and internet entrepreneurship. If you enjoy my content, stick around, and we'll share ideas for reaching FI together!

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