How to wrap up a job hunt

January 6, 2010 at 3:20 am Leave a comment

You’ve signed the offer letter,  determined your start date and now are heading out to celebrate the end of your job hunt and the impending start of a promising new job! What’s left to do but order a round of drinks for your pals? Well, as one intrepid email correspondent inquired: What is the best way to handle all those contacts, and the resume and network that she worked so hard to build?

She’s on target; ending this particular job hunt doesn’t mean that you leave behind the tools and network you’ve established and that you will need throughout the rest of your career — even if this job goes well. And it it doesn’t, you’ll need them sooner than you might imagine. Hiring and recruitment experts offer the following tips for wrapping up a job hunt with an eye to the future:

*First, make sure everything is set for the new job. Sign your offer letter and keep a copy in your personal files. Review benefits information to determine if you’ll have any gaps  you need to fill — sometimes health care and and other insurance benefits don’t begin right away. If possible, figure out parking or commuting arrangements beforehand. And negotiate a start date that will allow you enough time to wrap up your current job, free-lance work or other projects, and give you at least a few days in between to clear your head. Try to meet some new colleagues in person — perhaps for lunch — before your start date, or at least start a correspondence with them online.

*If you’re leaving a  job for another job, do so with class. Even if you’ve been unhappy, there’s no reason to dwell on that when telling your soon-to-be-ex employer that you’ll be leaving. Focus on what you’ve enjoyed about this organization and what you’ve gained in this position. Tell them it’s just too good an offer to pass up. Leave the door open if at all possible; you never know when your supervisor or others in your workplace will cross your career path again. Just as a  job interview is an employer’s first impression of you, the exit interview is their last — and may be lasting. Leave a good impression behind. Give enough notice — two weeks’ remains standard, unless you will be leaving for a direct competitor and then they may ask you to clear out your desk or office sooner — so that they have time to plan for your absence, but don’t feel compelled to stick around a lot longer, especially if your new employer wants you  now (which they often do).

*If you’ve been unemployed and are wrapping up a job hunt, spread the good news and thank everyone who played a part in your landing your new position. Send notes to all who helped with your job search and specifically thank them for the role they played and the advice and support you received. Be in touch with organizations who were still considering you to let them know that you are taking a job and are off the market — for now. But if you remain interested in working there, tell them that, and ask them to keep you in mind for future positions. And pass along promising job leads that you no longer need to others who are searching — pay it forward!

*Update your resume with your new job and keep it current. Especially if you went to a great deal of trouble to bring it up to date and polish your resume during your job search (as many job hunters do), you don’t want it to get rusty. You should always have an updated resume and bio ready to send along to someone who asks for it. Keep your online resume — such as that on LinkedIn — updated as well.

*Communicate your updated contact information to your network and to your online social network. Your new job shouldn’t prevent you from staying in touch with contacts you’ve made in person, through networking or affinity groups and through social-networking sites. You have worked hard to build this network and I assure you that you’ll need it in the future. Find reasons to be in touch with those in your network and make it a point to update them on your career. That’s how you’ll find that next job — don’t wait until you really need it to activate your network.

*A few upcoming events to consider that could help with a job hunt:

*Even if you’re not an alum, you may want to consider phoning in on Thursday, Jan. 21 to  “New Year, New Inspiration: Tips on Reinventing Your Career Teleseminar” sponsored by Northwestern University’s Alumni Association. Information and links follow:

New Year, New Inspiration: Tips on Reinventing Your Career Teleseminar

It’s a new year, reinvent your career!

If you (are):

– Contemplating a career change
– Laid off
– Want expert advice on how to navigate your way to a richer, more fulfilling life
– Want to give yourself a new year’s present by starting to work through a process of change

Sign up now for “New Year, New Inspiration: Tips for Reinventing Your Career” led by career expert, speaker, author, TV contributor and founder of VocationVacations, Brian Kurth. Kurth will moderate a panel discussion with four career experts. Each panelist will offer their top three tips that a person should use when creating their action plan for career transition/reinvention.

Brian Kurth (moderator, University of Wisconsin)
Dave Corbett (WCAS60)
Alexandra Levit (WCAS98)
Martha E. Mangelsdorf (Yale)
Jason Seiden (KSM02)

Read each panelist’s full biography.

Watch Brian Kurth on the Today Show.

Date and Time

January 21, 2010
5pm PT/6pm MT/7pm CT/8pm ET
The program will last one hour and 15 minutes.

Teleseminar Information
A teleseminar is like a conference call, only the participants are muted while the presenters speak.  Call from a land line or mobile phone.  Please note long distance charges do apply.

The phone number to access this teleseminar will be sent to you in your registration confirmation.

$10/person for alumni and friends

Register Here!

Questions? Contact or 847-491-5648.

*And the following event on Martin Luther King Day (a federal holiday), Jan. 18,  from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Verizon Center in D.C. could be useful to those who are interested in careers in sports and entertainment and parents of high school or college students who may be interested in those fields or courses of study that could open up doors later on. Admission is $40 and includes access to the college/career fair and panel discussion, as well as a lower-level ticket to the Wizards vs. Portland game at 1 pm. See the link below to a flyer with more information:


*As always, some job leads to consider:

*The Center for Independent Media in D.C. has an opening for an editor to lead its political news site, The Washington Independent (the hat tip on this position and the two following is to

Company: Center for Independent Media
Editor, The Washington Independent
Washington, DC, District of Columbia
Job Status: Full-time
Salary: Not Specified
Ad Expires:
February 9, 2010
Job ID: 1140242

The Center for Independent Media (CIM) is looking for an editor to lead its national political news site, The Washington Independent. This organized, self-starting innovator will work with CIM’s national editorial team to manage the production of high quality, breaking news, covering Congress, elections, state and federal politics, national security and other key issues of the day.

The role’s key criteria for success is generating “impact journalism,” with reporting that demonstrably shapes the public debate and advances the common good. The Independent’s staff achieves this goal through a combination of aggressive reporting and tenacious, insightful blogging.

The ideal candidate will have at least 3-4 years experience in editing and reporting political news online and will be intimately familiar with national politics. Salary commensurate with experience.

Responsibilities include:

Drive an effective news agenda that captures the attention of elected officials, key decision-makers and other influentials.

Develop, assign and edit individual stories that speak to CIM’s mission of impact journalism.

Oversee editing of blog posts throughout the news cycle.

Manage team of accomplished, top-tier political reporters and track their story development.

Manage the functionality of the site, in conjunction with tech team.

Help promote the work and staff of the Washington Independent as needed with outreach team

Work with CIM leadership to develop and aggressively pursue plans for enhanced ad revenue and positive traffic trends.

This position reports to the CIM Senior Editor.

About the Organization: The Center for Independent Media investigates and disseminates news that impacts public debate and advances the common good.  To accomplish its mission, the Center operates an independent online news network.   An informed citizenry is a fundamental principle of civil society and American democracy; in the words of the Supreme Court in Garrison v. Louisiana: “Speech concerning public affairs is more than self-expression; it is the essence of self government.”  Our reporting emphasizes the positive role of democratically elected government in securing the common good and social welfare, and the continuing benefits of our founding culture of egalitarian government by the people, for the people.

For more about the Center for Independent Media, please visit

Please send resume and cover letter to Email Subject: TWI Editor

*The McLaughlin Group is looking for a part-time TV producer-writer in D.C.:

Company: The McLaughlin Group
Washington, DC, District of Columbia
Job Status: Not Specified
Salary: Not Specified
Ad Expires:
February 9, 2010
Job ID: 135323

TELEVISION PRODUCER-WRITER: National public affairs TV program seeks qualified part-timer for writing, research and back-stop administration. Wide knowledge of political/legislative issues and insatiable appetite for policy issues enhance candidacy. Full employment also possible. Please email cover letter and resume to

*The National Women’s Law Center in D.C. is seeking a media director:

Company: The National Women’s Law Center
Media Director
Washington, District of Columbia
Job Status: Full-time
Salary: Not Specified
Ad Expires:
February 8, 2010
Job ID: 1139881

The National Women’s Law Center seeks a Media Director to raise the visibility of the organization and advance the Center’s work on health and reproductive rights, education and employment opportunities, family and economic security, and judicial nominations through outreach to online and offline media outlets.

The Organization:

For over 35 years, the National Women’s Law Center has led the way in expanding the possibilities for women and girls. The Center uses the law in all its forms to advance the rights of women, from advocating for new laws to litigating ground-breaking lawsuits to educating the public about how to make the law and public policies work for women and their families. The Center focuses on major policy areas of importance to women, including education, employment, health and reproductive rights, and family economic security, with special priority given to the needs of low-income women and their families. The Center has a staff of over 50 and an annual budget of approximately $10 million.

Job Duties and Responsibilities:

The Media Director will focus, at least initially, on all of the Center’s key public policy and legal initiatives – health care, reproductive rights, education, employment, family economic security, and judicial nominations.

Responsibilities in these areas include:

Working with the Vice President of Communications to design and implement strategic communications plans and messages. Acting as lead writer and editor of communications materials, including press releases, op-eds, letters to the editor and editorial board memos. Conducting outreach to national and state media and bloggers. Organizing press conferences, teleconferences and other events. Working closely with legal and policy staff and the communications team. Reports to Vice President of Communications.


Applicants should have a B.A. degree, 5-10 years of experience in public relations or journalism, excellent writing and editing skills with the ability to write quickly under pressure, and a demonstrated ability to place stories in a competitive environment. Applicants also must have excellent verbal skills and attention to detail and accuracy.

Knowledge of one of the Center’s issue areas, along with communications/media experience at a non-profit public policy organization is highly desirable. Campaign or Capitol Hill experience also a plus.

Candidates also must have the ability to grasp complicated policy messages and translate them for a mass media audience. Candidates must be self-directed and have the ability to work well with competing priorities, meet deadlines, and manage projects involving multiple people from across the department and organization.


If you are interested in joining the NWLC team, submit a cover letter describing your qualifications, strategic communications abilities, media contacts, and salary requirements; resume; two writing samples, and three supervisory references. Electronic submissions are preferred. Please send materials to and include position title in the subject line. Hard copies may be addressed to: Human Resources Department, National Women’s Law Center, 11 Dupont Circle, Suite 800, Washington, DC 20036, FAX: 202-588-5185. Applications accepted until position is filled. No calls please. EOE.

*And today’s final lead is for an interesting, well-paying federal government job in Arlington — director of communications and external affairs for the Committee for Purchase from Blind or Severely Disabled:
Director Of Communications and External Affairs
: Committee for Purchase from Blind or Severely Disabled – Arlington, VA
the Director of Communications manages the Agency�s… the development of an active and comprehensive communications program which facilitates the mission of the… $105,211 – $136,771 a year
From Federal Government Jobs

Vacancy No. WA299462-JD Department Committee for Purchase from Blind or Severely Disabled
Salary $105,211.00 to $136,771.00 Grade 14 to 14
Perm/Temp Permanent FT/PT Full-time
Open Date 1/3/2010 Close Date 1/16/2010
Job Link Apply Online Who may apply Status Candidates
Locations: ( Help make everyone’s job search easier! Report incorrect job locations. Include a new Location)
Job Description (Please follow all instructions carefully)
Committee for Purchase from People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled
Job Announcement Number:
Job Title:
Director of Communications and External Affairs
Salary Range:
105,211.00 – 136,771.00 USD /year
Series & Grade:
Promotion Potential:
Open Period:
Sunday, January 03, 2010 to Saturday, January 16, 2010
Position Information:
Full Time Career/Career Conditional
Duty Locations:
1 vacancy – ARLINGTON, VA
Who May Be Considered:
Status Candidates (Merit Promotion Eligibles)
Job Summary:
As the nation’s leading employer of people who are blind or severely disabled, the AbilityOne Program is an example of government at its finest.  Our mission first and foremost is to provide employment opportunities for people who are blind or have other severe disabilities. This mission is achieved by providing our federal customers with high quality products and services, delivered on time and at a reasonable price.
The AbilityOne Program currently employs more than 43,000 individuals throughout the nation and has consistently proven that it is an effective and vital link in the federal procurement supply chain. As a member of the Office of Policy and Programs team, the Director of Communications manages the Agency’s public relations and external affairs program.  The incumbent is responsible for coordination and contact with the media and the Congress as well as the development of an active and comprehensive communications program which facilitates the mission of the Committee for Purchase and AbilityOne Program non-profit agencies.
Key Requirements:

  • U.S. Citizenship or National
  • Resume & SF 50 or Member 4 DD214

Major Duties:
• Develops plans, policies, procedures, and informational programs that support the strategic goals of the Committee for Purchase and the AbilityOne Program.
• Develops new methods, strategies, initiatives, and communication plans, which present complex information using electronic, written and oral presentation formats in order to inform and educate diverse constituencies.  Identifies communications goals, strategic messages, and target audiences.
• Evaluates the impact of proposed legislation and related activities as they impact AbilityOne Program goals and objectives and advises the Director for Policy and Programs and the Agency’s senior leadership.
• Orchestrates the preparation and/or dissemination of press releases, articles, speeches, reports, newsletters, fact sheets, photographs, and radio and television materials.  Recommends optimal methods of communicating information.
• Leads and oversees agency public affairs activities, conferences/conference materials, multimedia presentations, and other public/media events including the attendant logistical support.
• Guides the production of all outreach and education materials including electronic media (audio/visual production, website content, and other social media) and printed materials (brochures, annual reports, briefing books, and orientation materials).  Also oversees contractor support associated with website maintenance, publications, and event coordination.
• Responds to information requests from the media, Congress, and other stakeholders.  Promotes and maintains effective working relationships with customers, stakeholders, the media, Congress, and the general public.  Coordinates media interviews, press conferences, briefings, and other public contacts for top management.
• Oversees outreach, advertising and promotional campaigns and events.  Develops and executes ceremonies, tours, and other special events.
• Manages the development of communications archives as well as education and outreach databases as needed.
To qualify for this position you must have at least one year of specialized experience evaluating and developing organizational policies and procedures and independently planning, coordinating and disseminating public relations and news information materials (i.e. news releases, fact sheets, annual reports, booklets, and broadcast spots). Your work should have included developing new methods, strategies and plans for communication; presenting complex information using a variety of written and oral presentation formats and techniques; establishing and maintaining effective working relationships and achieving understanding with groups that may have opposing views; and analyzing the effectiveness of communication plans and developing recommendations for improvement. This experience is equivalent to the GS-13 level in the federal service.
All applicants must meet the qualifications by the closing date of the announcement.
How You Will Be Evaluated:
Once the application process is complete, a review of your resume and supporting documentation will be made and compared against your responses to the assessment questionnaire to determine if you are qualified for this job.  The numeric rating you receive is based on your responses to the questionnaire. The score is a measure of the degree to which your background matches the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for this position.  If, after reviewing your resume and or supporting documentation, a determination is made that you have inflated your qualifications and or experience, you may lose consideration for this position.  Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating.  Your qualifications will be evaluated on the following competencies (knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics):

Written communication

  • Written communication
  • Oral communication and interpersonal skills
  • Program and project management
  • Strategic program support and development

Benefits:  The Federal Government offers a comprehensive benefits package.  Explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees at
Other Information:
If you are a veteran with preference eligibility and you are claiming 5-points veterans’ preference, you must submit a copy of your DD-214 or other proof of eligibility. If you are claiming 10-point veterans’ preference, you must also submit an SF-15, “Application for 10-Point Veterans’ Preference” plus the proof required by that form.  For more information on veterans’ preference see

Males born after 12-31-59 must be registered or exempt from Selective Service (see ).

Interagency Career Transition Assistance Program (ICTAP):  For information on how to apply as an ICTAP eligible see  To be well-qualified and exercise selection priority for this vacancy, displaced Federal employees must be rated at 85 or above on the rating criteria for this position.
How To Apply:
To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package which includes:

1. Your Résumé

2. A complete Assessment Questionnaire

3. Veterans Preference documentation (Member 4 DD214) if applicable

The complete Application Package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (EST) on

Saturday, January 16, 2010.

To begin the process, click the Apply Online button at the bottom of this screen to create an account or log in to your existing USAJOBS account. Follow the prompts to complete the assessment questionnaire. Please ensure you click the Submit My Answers button at the end of the process.

Note: To return to a previously Saved or Incomplete application you may use the following link:

To fax supporting documents you are unable to upload, complete this cover page using the following Vacancy ID WA299462.   Fax your documents to 1-478-757-3144.

If you cannot apply online:

  1. Click the following link to view and print the assessment questionnaire View Occupational Questionnaire, and
  2. Print this 1203FX form to provide your response to the assessment questionnaire and
  3. Fax the completed 1203FX form along with any supporting documents to 1-478-757-3144. Your 1203FX will serve as a cover page for your fax transmission.

Required Documents:
The following documents are required and must be received by the closing date of this announcement:

1. Your Résumé

2. A complete Assessment Questionnaire WA299462

3. Other supporting documents:

Veterans Preference Documentation, if applicable

– College transcript(s), if qualifying based on education

SF-50, Notification of Personnel Action (if applying as a status candidate with current or

former Federal service)
Contact Information:
Phone: (202)606-2575
Or write:
Washington Services Branch
Please do not send mail to this address
Please call with questions for applying
Washington, DC 00000
What To Expect Next:
Once the online questionnaire is received you will receive an acknowledgement email that your submission was successful. Based upon your score, you may be referred to the hiring official. If your name is referred to the hiring official, you may be contacted directly by that office for a possible interview.

You will receive notice via email or by mail, if no email address was provided by you during the application process, once this process is completed (generally 4-6 weeks).
EEO Policy Statement:
Reasonable Accommodation Policy Statement:
Veterans Information:
Legal and Regulatory Guidance:
USAJOBS Control Number: 1751670
Control Number: 84959904

Happy hunting! I’ll be off to sunny Phoenix for a few days to help lead a training seminar for business journalists and professors so my next blog post will be on Monday, Jan. 11.



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