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Planning your next career move for 2015? Beat the new year rush....

It’s coming to the end of the year and you may be starting to think about a new challenge and a job for the new year?  If you’re thinking about changing jobs in 2015, now is the perfect time to get ready to beat the rush for the inevitable scramble for new roles in the New Year.

Many savvy companies get their roles advertised before Christmas as they know potential applicants will have extra time over the Christmas holidays to reflect upon their year, start job hunting and have the time to apply!

Here are nine steps you can take now in preparation to start a new and satisfying job in 2015.

1. Set goals and know your worth

Whether you’d like to move into management, increase your salary, move in a new direction, stop commuting or simply improve your work life balance. Now is the time to set goals to prevent yourself from applying for roles that could destabilise you and your career. Keeping those goals in mind as you perform your job search will help prevent you from being tempted by unsuitable jobs.

2. Broaden your spectrum

Your main experience might lie in one sector, but is there an opportunity to transfer your skills into another area? Consider your other options. When job hunting time arrives, although your dream job might not be available, you might find your skills are suited to something unexpected.  Read job descriptions even if you have never heard of the job title before, you may be surprised about how many transferable skills you have.

3. Choose the right company culture fit for you

  • Are the company’s values in keeping with yours?
  • Do company leaders prioritise issues you deem important?
  • Does the company emphasise training, mobility, and promotion from within?
  • What kind of personalities seem to thrive within the company?

4. Update your skills and knowledge

If you start by reading some current job descriptions and you note that there are one or two skills/areas you could improve upon, or don’t have the experience, improve them by stepping up. Consider some volunteer work or improving your skills through a hobby.  If you have skills that could do with a refresh, you could use online tutorials such as or attend something like the Brighton initiative Codebar to bring your knowledge up to date. Keep an eye out on the Wired Sussex Calendar for events that could help you improve your current skill-set.

5. Polish your CV

We all know CVs should be tailored to the employer, but that shouldn’t prevent you from having a good look at your old CVs and editing them now so you’re prepared. Does that personal statement sound a bit cheesy a few years on? Are there new skills you’ve acquired? Small or large achievements in the intervening period that aren’t listed anywhere? Have you included social media accounts

6. Professionalise your contact points 

It may sound obvious, but make sure your voicemail and e-mail account is professional and your contact details are up to date.

7. Tidy up your social media profiles

Whether you like it or not, employers will look to social media to get a bit more information about your character.  Figure out how to raise security settings to their highest level on your Facebook & Instagram....

With Twitter and LinkedIn, ensure your profile picture is a clean head-and-shoulders shot, link with some key people & maybe get some recommendations.

8. Buy a new interview outfit

Buy something that makes you feel fabulous, relaxed and that you’ll wear again and again. Whether it’s a cool new suit, a pair of new shoes or dress to impress, feeling comfortable and like *you* at your interview is really important.

9. Practice your interview technique

Write a list of your achievements and talk about them with friends and family to test  and improve your confidence about sharing your worth. Brush up on your knowledge of the history of companies where you want to apply for roles and find out what’s going on in your sector.

What are the questions an interviewer is likely to ask?  You can’t predict exactly what an interviewer is going to ask, but you can prepare yourself to answer the commonly-asked questions, such as “why do you want this job?” and “what are your strengths and weaknesses?”.  Once you have an interview, read the job description and your application again pre-interview to help you prepare.

AND have some important  and interesting questions ready to ask the employer that show you are interested in what they do and your potential career there.

Read my blog about how to write a great CV.  It's titled Graduate CV but it applies to everyone.

Check out the latest jobs on our Jobs Board now to start you research, you never know your next dream job could be there already.

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