1. Set up your voicemail greeting. Personalize your voicemail to help HR professionals know they’ve reached the right person. Use a friendly, professional greeting that includes your name.
2. Create a business card. Consider investing in business cards. They make sharing your contact information easy. (And a business card is more professional than writing your info down on a napkin.)
It’s also easier to network with business cards on hand. You can use an all-purpose business card with your name, contact number, email address and LinkedIn profile URL. You may want to use a broader occupational title instead of a specific job title (unless your skills and knowledge are in a very specific niche).
3. Coach your references. After you’ve asked your colleagues or mentors to be references, remember to stay in touch with them, especially when you’re in the final stages of the interview process.
You can give them a heads-up by sending them an email that details the job posting. Include all the skills the job requires, as well as the job description. Your references will appreciate your effort and professionalism.
4. Respond to inquiries as soon as possible. Reply to emails quickly and prove that you’re responsible enough to send a message back. Responding with a short acknowledgement email is better than not getting a reply at all.
5. Follow up with a thank-you note. After a networking exchange, send a thank-you note in appreciation of the person’s effort to meet with you. (This is important, especially if the person went out of his or her way just to meet you.) Thank-you notes at any point in a job search are a great way to express your gratitude.
6. Update your network. After getting a job, don’t forget to close the loop with all the contacts you’ve made during your job search process. Thank them for their assistance and keep in touch with them, especially if they need help. Doing this will build strong relationships as you continue to reach your career goals.
Job hunting is competitive, and the smallest kind and professional gestures can make a big difference in your search.