Summary: Use an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of all your job hunting research. You never know when you might need it again or when it can help a friend out.
Being prepared is very important when job hunting. Using an Excel spreadsheet can help you stay organized so you don’t keep sending your resume to the same place every week. It can help you keep the addresses and contact information handy so that you can resend applications when the time is right.
There is a lot of research that must happen to prepare for interviews by learning the mission statements, the hiring manager’s name, and other information. The best part of an Excel spreadsheet is that you can personalize it. There is no right or wrong number of columns to organize the criteria for a job by.
A column you might want is for the name of the contact that referred you to the job. This will make it easier to know who to send a thank you card to. Another column can be the source where you learned of the opening, whether on the company’s webpage or on a search site like Granted.com. Add columns with the date the application was sent and another for the interview date. You can learn trends about how long a company takes to review applications before scheduling an interview. Knowing the dates will also help you when you call to follow-up on an application you submitted.
A spreadsheet will allow you to rank the open positions by things specific to you such as salary, commute time, benefits, size of company, etc. When the time comes and you receive more than one job offer, having all this information will help you pick the offer that best fits your needs.
An Excel sheet can be used years down the road even after you find a job the first time. It may need to be updated, but at least you won’t have to start from scratch after getting laid-off. Think of the spreadsheet as the place to keep all professional resources such as contacts and leads, plus you can always help a friend out if they are the one looking for a new job.
Photo: taringa.netExcel Makes Job Searching Easier by Amanda Griffin