Searching for a career can quickly become overwhelming. However, it doesn’t have to be so difficult. Preparation and research can make your job search much easier.

There are a few ways you can go about making your career search easier. Here are seven tips to get you started.

Use Social Media to Connect with Friends

An updated resume only goes so far and the classified job ads rarely contain the best jobs. Using social media sites, such as Facebook and LinkedIn can help make your career search easier. Put the news out to the world and you might know somebody with a job available.

Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date and check your Facebook page for professionalism. Then, put the word out and you might just get referred to someone or introduced to the right person by a friend, co-workers or former classmate.

It’s All About Numbers

When you send out resumes or fill out applications, you can’t take things personally. You will likely not hear back from many of them, but it’s a numbers game. Recruiters and those in HR often receive hundreds of applications every week. This can make it hard to get back to everybody. However, when you are the right person, you will be contacted.

The Best Jobs Won’t Be Advertised

Keep in mind, the best jobs are rarely advertised. You have to just contact the company, even when they say there are no jobs available on their website. If they like what they see, they will find a job for you. Sometimes, you can send your resume to companies you’d like to work for and get on their radar. You never know when an opening may come up and they contact you because you made an impression.

Don’t Spend Forever Fine-Tuning Your Resume

Most hiring managers won’t spend forever looking at every detail of your resume. They will give it a quick scan and put it in the pile of those to contact or those to reject. You don’t want to devote your job search time to making your resume perfect. Spend a few hours updating it and proof-reading it, but after that, move on to actually searching for a job.

Create an Online Portfolio

It’s the digital age and if you don’t have an online portfolio, you may struggle to find a job. Companies want to see that you know how to use certain online skills and won’t waste time with those without certain skills. Create a free or low-cost website with one of the many platforms out there as your online portfolio. You can list the URL on your resume to help hiring managers find out even more about you.

Figure Out Your Talents and Use Them

The key to any job search is setting you apart from the competition. If you stand out because you’re good at something specific, it needs to be highlighted for hiring managers. Confidence is a big deal to many companies and your resume needs to show confidence in your skills.

Avoid Wasting Time

If you think you’ve found the right job for you, but you don’t meet the qualifications, you don’t want to waste your time. Apply for jobs you’re qualified for or miss the qualifications by just a little bit. This will help you to focus your job search better and waste less time.

Make sure you use these tips and prepare yourself for the job search process. Look into each company you plan to interview with and understand who they are, what they are looking for and how you can shine in the interview. With the right preparation, you’ll make your job search less stressful