If you’re determined to land a new job or score a promotion this year, you’re in luck. Workplace experts predict 2013 offers the best chance for career enhancement in more than five years, especially if you’ve got skills.
While overall unemployment hovers under 8%, the jobless rate in specific fields — such as accounting, advertising, finance, law, marketing and technology — is much less, ranging from 2% to 5%. Plus, salaries in these industries are expected to jump 3.7% this year, compared to the average 3% increase across the broader job market.
But no matter what your occupation, it’s possible to boost your paycheck in 2013 with these new “secrets” from researchers at Money magazine.
Don’t Be Afraid to Switch it Up
As the saying goes, in order to really grow you have to abandon your comfort zone, and now more than ever that means switching companies. If your current employer can’t provide you with a raise or promotion, it may be a sign that it’s time to jump ship.
Employee turnover is up 30% nationwide, and businesses are increasingly seeking talent outside their own firms. Sixty percent of businesses have hired externally, up from 50% two years ago. If you want to stay with your current company, an outside job offer could give you the leverage to get that salary bump.
Identify Expanding Companies
If you do want to make the switch, increase your chances of getting hired by applying for gigs at companies in growth mode. Pay attention to employers with numerous postings on general job boards, such as Monster, Indeed and CareerBuilder. Job boards are relevant again, accounting for one in five new hires. Also keep an eye out for local news stories about companies moving into the area or announcing commitments to hire additional workers.
Target Industry-Specific Sites
General job boards are ideal for getting a snapshot of the labor market. But for more in-depth insight, check out sites specific to your industry. For instance, explore Dice.com for tech jobs, Bridgespan.org for nonprofit careers, or SchoolSpring.com if you’re interested in working in education. Employers say niche sites are a better way to connect with qualified candidates.
Build Your Online Brand
Increase your exposure to potential employers through popular social media sites like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. According to CareerBuilder, nearly 40% of companies screen candidates through social media. By sharing relevant articles or offering thoughtful commentary, you can create a reputation as a valuable resource in your industry, allowing you to move up the ranks quickly.
Expand Your Network
Work every angle. A whopping one-third of hires still come from referrals, so connect with as many people as possible. Contact friends, former coworkers, and make new connections through social media. Ask for introductions or advice from people working at your target companies, but don’t ask outright for a job. Keep your name in front of people who can help your career. Let them see you as an intelligent, qualified candidate through the social capital you’ve cultivated online.
What’s your best job search tip for 2013? Connect with me on Twitter @Farnoosh and use the hashtag #finfit.