Experts are feeling optimistic about the job market for 2017. Read what the experts have to say about how you can take advantage of the new strong market.
This article originally appeared on Forbes.com.
For years, the job market left people struggling to find gainful employment. But many experts on Forbes Coaches Council are optimistic about 2017’s prospects. They predict a strong job market with a subsection focusing on job agility and multiple side gigs, rather than life-long attachment to a particular company. Now more than ever, networking and skill groups are vital for pursuing your dreams.
So what should you do take advantage of the year’s vibrancy as you brush up your resume and get ready to hit the job sites? Experts have this to say:
1. Cross-Training Will Be Critical
If stock prices and the market as a whole is indicative of the job market, then I would say that 2017 looks very optimistic. This year you will see a large portion of the baby boomer workforce retire, and job seekers need to be active and ready to assume new roles. There could be a skill gap, so cross-training will be a critical area of focus for companies to keep operations going smoothly. – Daniel Rounds, Daniel Rounds, Millennial Career Coach
2. Get Involved In Talent Communities
“Healthy and growing” is the job market prediction for 2017, especially for experienced candidates. Start getting involved in talent communities that many larger organizations are building. It is a way to start interacting with your dream companies and learning more about them while giving them an opportunity to learn more about you. The key to job search success in 2017 is building relationships. – Gia Ganesh, Gia Ganesh Coaching
This year promises to be a year of disruption. Not only is technology changing the job environment, but as a new administration comes into office, you can expect changes that will ripple through industries from defense to health care and energy to the environment. New laws and regulations will shift what jobs are created and lost. Keep your eyes open and be agile to move where the opportunities are appearing. – Larry Boyer, Success Rockets LLC
4. Employers Are Hunting For Qualified Job Candidates Online
Recruiters are complaining about the “war for talent,” which is great news for job seekers! Like anyone contemplating making an investment (from pizza to a new car), employers search online for qualified job candidates (or to screen applicants). Create solid professional visibility on sites like LinkedIn. Make your accomplishments, skills and experience clear, visible and findable. – Susan P. Joyce, Job-Hunt.org
5. Clean Up Your Social Media
It’s a small world. Take a fresh look at your social media and see if any of your remarks or posts from the election year need to be removed. You have a right to believe and speak your truths. But be aware: for better or worse, your remarks could impact your future employment. The key: Take a good look; make sure your own posts represent you properly. Your social media is part of every interview. – Robin Blakely, Creative Center of America
. Plan For Job Automation
Young people need to be thinking long term. Jobs like banking, auto sales, and many others are being taken over by automation. Young folks need to focus on things that have long-term stability. Solar, real estate, technology, and even selling the very same robots that could replace their job. – Ryan Stewman, Hardcore Closer LLC
7. Showcase Innovative Work
Many industries, including media, telecommunications, and health care, will continue to see disruption. Job seekers should focus on what they’ve done in previous roles that was innovative or extended a company brand. By showing how you came up with new solutions to problems in light of changing business environments, you can prove you have the agility to function well in a new organization. – Barbara Safani, Career Solvers
8. Diversify Your Income Streams
The simple truth is that due to automation and higher turnover for millennials at work — plus a strong pull to do something “meaningful” — you’re always better off making an income from multiple streams (side hustles, consulting gigs, etc.). Shift your on-the-job mentality away from “staying in it for the long haul” to “learn-and-run.” Job stability is long gone, so diversifying income streams is critical. – Yuri Kruman, Master The Talk Consulting
9. Career Agility Is Required
The 2017 job market holds a lot of promise, yet job seekers need to approach a short-term job search with a long-term plan. Career agility is required for long-term stability as the new world of work shifts from permanent positions to shorter gigs and side hustles. Always be thinking two steps ahead and arm yourself with skills and opportunities that will help you succeed in both 2017 and beyond! – Adrienne Tom, Career Impressions
10. What Is Your Compelling Value To Any New Employer?
Before you read the macro headlines, look at your own value proposition, your LinkedIn, your specific achievements and set a clear time-based game plan. What can you offer your existing job or industry? Update your current skills, deepen current connections and look at yourself as a brand promise. Don’t market yourself as a job seeker. Answer this: What is my compelling value to any new employer? – John O’Connor, Career Pro Inc.
11. Do Your Homework And Be Ready To Market Yourself
All indications point to companies confident about hiring! If the past is any indication, people will test the waters in droves — so bringing your A game will be a must. This means you must do your homework around companies and industries worth targeting, have a robust networking strategy, and have career marketing materials (i.e, your LinkedIn and resume) that showcase your value at the ready. – Virginia Franco, Virginia Franco Resumes
12. Stand Out From The Herd
It doesn’t matter what the job market looks like in 2017 and beyond. What’s important is how you look to the job market and what makes you stand out from the herd of applicants. Identifying your target audience, then creating a niche with your target audience in mind, will help you stand out and be seen by companies who have, or may soon have, openings in your specialty. – Grace Totoro, TransitionsByGrace. LLC
13. Talk With People In The Market
Every region will have different opportunities and challenges. To make the most of your opportunities, get out and talk to as a many people in your target market and industry as possible. Make your search a full-time job, and take an entrepreneurial approach to identify where you create the best value. Think creatively and, if needed, propose a unique new role that’s unconventional! – Jenn Lofgren, Incito Consulting
14. Tell Your Network What You’re Seeking
Job searching in 2017 is still about relationships, but your network can only help if they know that you’re searching and what you’re searching for. Create a headline for your job search, a one-liner that conveys your goal, and find excuses to share it with everyone. E.g.: “I’m looking for an established startup that is interested in automating and scaling their marketing as they grow.” – Taylor Jacobson, Focusmate
15. Develop Six Critical Skills
Job markets going forward will be fluid and uncertain. Jobs and work will come and go. Develop and grow these six critical skills: curiosity, creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, conscientiousness, collaboration and agility. – Ira Wolfe, Success Performance Solutions