Job Seeker Toolkit

work desks

General Job Search Help

THE JOB SEEKER CHECKLIST

  • Resumes
  • Job Searching
  • Job Application
  • Cover Letters
  • Interview Preparation
  • Thank You Notes

Best Practices & Resources

WHAT TO INCLUDE IN A RESUME

  • Contact information. Include your name, phone number, & email
  • Job History: company name, dates of employment, job titles, description of duties, and supervisor’s name and contact information
  • Education: certificates, licenses, additional training
  • Summary of your strengths and experiences. This can include computer skills, transferable skills, language skills, leadership experience, and more

RESUME DO’S

  • Customize your resume to the job you are applying for. A good place to start is to carefully read the job postings that interest you.  Identify keywords and skills that show what the employer is looking for in an ideal candidate and use them to describe your own skills and relatable experiences
  • Keep it brief and easy to read. Try to limit your resume to one page, two pages at most. Use a basic font such as Arial or Times New Roman and keep the font size between 10 and 12 points. Be consistent throughout your resume sections
  • Include only relevant work history from the past 10 years
  • Include volunteer experience in the work experience section only if it is relevant to the job, you have little paid experience, or a resume gap
  • Be truthful. State your abilities accurately.
  • Proofread your resume for any errors before you submit it. Ask a friend or family member to review it
  • Make sure to save a copy of your resume using a flash drive, cloud storage such as Google Drive or OneDrive, or email yourself copy

 

CREATE A RESUME

Resume.com - This free, user-friendly resume builder allows you to print and download your resume as a PDF or .doc file.

 

Career One Stop - Resume Walkthrough: Career One Stop’s Resume Guide will walk you through each step of creating a resume and provides examples to help your resume stand out to employers.

 

Transferable Skills & Checklist – definitions, descriptors, and examples.

Indeed.com

ONetOnline

Purdue Online Writing Lab

  • Be clear and confident about what you have to offer
  • Use keywords and location to narrow your results
  • Research the company before reaching out
  • Consider joining a network group such as LinkedIn
  • Explore and use features on job search engines and job boards (i.e. notification, resume upload, and storage)

 

TEENS/RECENT GRADS

California Career Resource Network (CalCRN) - offers career and college readiness resources designed to help students develop an effective career action plan. Sponsored by the California Department of Education.

 

College Recruiter – niche job board for college and university students looking for internships, part-time employment and seasonal work. 

Regional Occupation Careers and Programs (ROCP) Regional Occupational Centers and Programs (ROCPs) - career and workforce preparation for high school students and adults, preparation for advanced training, and the upgrading of existing skills.

 

 

ADULTS

Job Search Engines resources aggregating job board postings from the web and company sites. There are many more, below are some suggested sites.

CareerBuilder.com

Indeed.com

 

Employment Development Department (EDD) - employment and training services in partnership with state and local agencies and organizations; benefits laid off workers, youth, veterans, and people with disabilities. Eligibility criteria may apply.

 

Government Jobs – job search engine aggregating federal, city, and state jobs for online application. Upload and save your resumes for future use.

GovernmentJobs.com

USAJobs.com

 

SENIORS

AARP Job Board – match your years of valuable experience with employers committed to an age-diverse workforce, narrow searches with easy to use filters to focus on what matters most – whether it’s where you work or how you work.

 

Workforce50career resources for boomers and seniors. Partnered with ZipRecruiter.

 

Senior Job Bank – service providing full range of employment types and disciplines for job seekers age 50+ and employers seeking their services.

 

WALK-IN LOCATIONS

Career One Stop - career, training, and job resources including veterans, laid-off worker, young adult, older workers, workers with disabilities or criminal convictions. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor and partner of the American Job Center network. Eligibility requirements may apply.

https://www.careeronestop.org/

    • Garden Grove location: 714-241-4900
    • Irvine location:  949-341-8000
    • Anaheim Workforce Connection 714-765-4350
    • Santa Ana Work Center 714-647-5340

 

Employment/Staffing agencies – businesses that specialize in matching job seekers with companies on a temporary / permanent basis. Search the web for office locations. Have a digital/hard copy resume ready on hand.

ONLINE APPLICATIONS

Collect all the information you need before you start the online application. It will be much easier when you have all the information you need in front of you. You may need the following.

  • Email address and password
  • Job site usernames and passwords
  • Save your progress on a flash or cloud storage
  • Driver’s License, Photo I.D., or Social Security Number
  • Resume and cover letter

 

If you do not have an email address create one using a free email provider.

Gmail - Google’s free web email service. This also gives you free access to Google Drive.

Outlook – Microsoft's free web-based email service. This also give you free access to OneDrive. 

 

  • Choose a professional looking email address that includes your name or initials. Avoid using any personal information like your birth date
  • Make sure to remember or write down your email address and password
  • As employers will likely contact you via email, check your email regularly to ensure you are not missing important information from potential employers

  • A cover letter is not always required, but it may highlight your strengths and help you land an interview
  • Cover letters are typically one page long and allow you to introduce yourself to the hiring committee
  • Cover letters are good way to explain anything about your resume or experience that you’re worried about like gaps in employment, switching careers, or lack of experience
  • Cover letters should be tailored to the specific position you’re applying for

 

OC Career Café - a well written cover letter can distinguish you from other applicants.  Watch this short video to get an idea of how to compose a cover letter.

 

GCFLearnFree.org - free online educational website by Goodwill Industries of Easter NC Inc. And the Goodwill Communication Foundation Inc.  See Crafting Your Cover Letters

  • Prepare for your interview by finding out as much as you can about the organization. Explore the organization’s website including mission and values of the company, presence on social media, key players, current news, and clients, products, and services (See Huhman’s article below) 
  • Dress professionally and be neat and clean for the interview 
  • Practice your answers to the most commonly asked interview questions 
  • Prepare questions that you can ask the employer 

 

GCFLearnFree.org - a free online educational website by Goodwill Industries of Eastern NC Inc. and the Goodwill Communication Foundation Inc. See Interviewing Skills YouTube playlist. 

Huhman, H. (2018, July 26). 7 Things to Research Before Any Job Interview

 Universal Class – free online courses subscribed by library.  Need OC Public Library card.  See Online Class: Interview Skills. 

 

  • Express your appreciation for the meeting and mention something specific from your discussion 
  • Reiterate your interest and excitement for the opportunity 
  • Briefly explain why you’d be a good fit for the job 
  • Thank the interviewer for their time and where you can be reached 
  • Don’t write a novel.  Don’t send a group email.  Don’t wait, send ASAP 

 

CareerBuilder -  A prominent job search engine.  See article Are post-interview thank-you notes still a thing? 

Background checks: credit, drugs, and your rights 

 

COVID19 Benefits – Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) FAQs. Includes links to Unemployment Insurance Benefits, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) FAQs, Disability or Paid Family Leave Benefits, and Employer Information 

 

County of Orange Senior Employment Program – a federally funded program to train, retrain, and prepare low income workers age 55+ for the workforce. 

Phone: 949-800-3267  

 

Drug Testing at Work 

https://employment.findlaw.com/workplace-privacy/drug-testing-at-work.html 

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/california-laws-drug-testing.html 

 

Earn Your High School Diploma - OC Public Libraries will offer qualified community members the opportunity to earn an accredited high school diploma and credentialed career certificate through Career Online High School  

 

Economic & Business Recovery Call Center - center offering information and resources to help Orange County businesses navigate through the current economic climate  

Phone: 714-480-6500  

 

Free internet and computer access 

OC Public Libraries, all branches 

Career One Stop centers 

 

Free online courses and training (computer & business competence)  

https://edu.gcfglobal.org/en/ 

http://learn.caconnects.org/container2.php 

Learning Express: Job & Career Accelerator – available through http://www.ocpl.org/elib with your OCPL library card 

 

Job & company research 

Occupational outlook handbook 

ReferenceUSA with OC Public Library card: 

 

Job Hunt – current articles and tips for the jobseeker 

 

Job resources for the Ex-offender  

https://secondchancejobsforfelons.com/ 

https://www.careeronestop.org/TridionMultimedia/tcm24-26393_PDF_Job-Search-Help-for-Ex-offenders.pdf 

 

Salary & benchmarking 

https://www.payscale.com/ 

https://www.paycheckcity.com/calculator/salary/california 

 

Transportation 

OCTA map and route schedule 

OCTA bus reduced fares

 

Unemployment benefits - Guide to applying for unemployment benefits. Learn what type of benefits you qualify for and how to apply for them. 

 

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Young Adult Program – offers tutoring, study skills, paid and unpaid work experiences, occupational skills training.  Out-of-school Youth ages 16-24 or In-School Young Adult ages 14-21.  See eligibility requirements on the website.  Facilitated by the County of Orange Community Resources/Community Services