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How To Kick Start Your Job Search In A New City

Posted on the 27 March 2012 by Classycareergirl @classycareer

Today’s post is written by Alex Summers. Having spent long and arduous hours learning about business, marketing, and writing from respected minds while attending school, she now feels an obligation to spread the knowledge along with a fresh perspective. 

As young working women we often find ourselves struggling to balance our careers with our personal lives. Sometimes our work limits our social opportunities, and sometimes our personal goals, plans, and dreams get in the way of our current employment.

This conflict is often most pronounced when a cross-country move is involved. For whatever the reason – perhaps we are following a significant other, wanting to be closer to family, or simply drawn to a city where we have always wanted to live – many of us have had the experience of dropping everything, loading up a U-Haul, and moving to a new area for personal reasons. Sometimes we have a new job lined up when we arrived. All too often, however, recruiters won’t want to talk until we’ve relocated and can speak face-to-face. Consequently, we arrive in a new city with no job upon which to fall back.

Thanks to the internet and the digital nature of today’s employment search, finding a job in Los Angeles requires many of the same approaches as finding one in New York. For example, a searcher can peruse popular sites such as Craigslist or, they can look for openings on company websites, and they can even get started by doing basic Google searches.

But the online employment search is an increasingly saturated and cluttered arena, meaning that one can still be much more productive in their quest by networking and communicating with people in a local area. How can this best be done when someone is new to a city? If you aren’t moving to a place where you have professional or familial ties, here are a few suggestions for breaking into the local networking world:

Reach Out to Alum

The college or university from which you graduated can provide an immediate first network upon arrival in a new city, even if you graduated many years beforehand. Contact the alumni association of your college and see if they have a local chapter or representative. Schools with a national reach can often provide regional newcomers with direct contacts in their field.

Use a Staffing Agency

Staffing agencies can be incredibly helpful when arrivals, overwhelmed by an unknown market, need help jumpstarting their job search. Keep in mind that certain lines of work are far more easily found through such organizations; for example, companies are far more likely to seek out it staffing than to request an employer with a drama background.

Be Social

Making friends and acquaintances in your new city is a crucial first steps towards laying the foundation for a professional network. Your new neighbors may have contacts in a local firm, and the same goes for the people you meet at a bar or at a laundromat. Always remember to be friendly and don’t hesitate to ask a short-term acquaintance for assistance.

Go to college career fairs

College career fairs are often open to the public and usually feature most of the major employees in a local market. If you want a chance to speak with recruiters in a less-intensive environment than one would expect at a standard job fair, this may be a worthwhile option to consider.

It’s never ideal to move to a new city without a job lined up. But, if personal reasons dictate such a decision, it’s crucial that you arrive at your new home and find ways to network right off the bat. Hopefully, these suggestions will provide some assistance in accomplishing just that.

Have you completed a job search in a new city?  What are your tips?

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