Sunday, April 19, 2015

SΩ8 - Exploring the Job Jungle

A new topic for me, yet one that most readers are familiar with: job searching. For over a year I’ve been job searching. While I’ve succeeded at freelancing, I’m still looking for the job that’s a ‘perfect’ fit. Here I give some insight into my job searching experience. In the future, I’ll write my ideas for improving the entire process! 

Problems and Suggestions
I believe most problems of the job searching process stem from the fact that it’s an imperfect puzzle. An employer searches for a ‘perfect’ candidate, which is near impossible to find. The employer must thus opt for the ‘best fit’. Here are a few problematic areas (left side) and suggestions to deal with each (right side).

Finding ‘The One’ 

Your Holy Document

Friendly Chat or Interrogation

Suggestions for the Job Post Factory
When looking through job posts, it seems most follow the same generic template:
  • Talk about how amazing the company is
  • List the tasks involved
  • List the requirements
  • List benefits and salary (sometimes)
Do these posts give a good idea of the job? I’d like some transparency and details of what the job truly is like. Perhaps a schedule of a typical workweek or for some jobs a video showing what the job and company is like. Better yet some examples of previous projects. Finally, make it crystal clear which 2-3 requirements are necessary and which are just bonuses.


  1. You clearly thought about this well and thoroughly! I'd like to add a third dimension to the chart you present. Namely, the z-axis should represent how "marketable" the skill or activity is, or relate to how much the company (or companies in general) value this skill and is searching for it!

    I believe that especially for junior engineers, starting off their first jobs or without many years in industry, more complex and developed skills such as Inventiveness and problem-solving are often redundant, because the employee must first focus a few years to master the more basic skills to even be able to function in a company. Senior positions might add those skills in bold letters in their CVs, as a complement to their already impressive list of not only skills, but accomplishments!

    I feel that what you are describing would help me as a process of soul-searching more than an actual guide to finding and choosing employment! The simplest and so far one of the best advice I got was to imagine a vague idea of what I want to be in 10 years and take the decision "right now" that takes me one of the milion required steps closer to that "dream job" or goal. Sort of like a bucket list, and next to it a list of things that you've done that take you closer to completing the bucket list! It might seem intuitive, the advice, and at first I didn't think much of it, but one time it really struck me! The result was a "man-up" kind of attitude towards myself and my job search, that dictates to just take something that's good (not the best or ideal, if it even exists), because it's better than not even knowing what is "best" for you! I believe that's when I really understood, that your "ideal, dream job" kind of evolves as you make life choices. So if that means, that I'll adapt and mold my expectations more towards programming, according to the skils accuired at my first job, than so be it! And if it makes me miserable, it also strikes one thing of the list of possible future employments, and I'm also one step closer to "the goal", the "ideal job".

    Anyways, I feel you've taken the right attitude by working "freelance" or part-time or whatever makes you happy and helps pay bills for the time in between "now" and "the perfect job". Kudos, keep up the thought process and the blog posts! :)


  2. Although I already responded to you directly, I'll respond for the sake of fellow readers.

    Hmm the marketability of a skill sounds interesting. Perhaps can make multiple charts for simplicity sake. However, how can you know the value of each skill, prior to work experience?

    There are many preferences and approaches to life. Being pragmatic in job searching is a rather popular option. My concern is getting stuck in a job you dislike. It often happens that someone dislikes a job, but due to financial security they just stay for years.

    Instead I suggest finding something you feel confident doing and has the potential for growth towards your dream job. Even if you're unsure of your dream job, perhaps focus on a skill you wish to learn/improve.

    I believe some sole searching (if done well) can help save many years of hopping from job to job!