If you are unsure about your position with your company, it’s time to update your resume. Rewrite it to play up your accomplishments. If you need two pages, use them—recruiters no longer believe that everything should be communicated in a single page. List yourself with Web career sites as well as search firms. Since companies use keywords—job jargon—when reviewing job listings on the web, write your cover letter and resume with those in mind before listing yourself at a career site.
Tailor each resume and cover letter to the specific opening or situation you are applying for. Also, mail letters to firms that you would like to work with. Be aware that only about 4 percent of unsolicited resumes are answered (but one of those answered could lead to a job). Even when the people who receive unsolicited letters don’t answer, they often keep them on file. Companies would rather hire direct than pay a fee.
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Don’t limit yourself to these avenues. Mention your interest in a new job to friends and family. Ask them to tell others of your interest. They may know about an opening that would interest you. Networking should include contacts on lists from professional associations or colleges attended as well.
Whether you are still employed or have already been terminated, you should ask yourself whether you want to continue to do what you have done or whether you would prefer to change careers. The problem with this approach is that you may discover, once you have made a career move, that it isn’t really what you wanted after all. A better approach is to ask yourself, "What do I do well?" Market yourself accordingly, focusing on your strengths. If you have past experience in the field, you may find a job sooner.