Looking for a job can be a frustrating and challenging experience, especially when a person has been out of the job market for several years. Having help and guidance to get a job can be a tremendous blessing.
Knowing the importance of being self sufficient, the Church offers an online resource for job hunting at ldsjobs.org. Michael Anderson, Senior Manager of Field Operations for LDS employment said, “LDSJobs.org is a great resource for members who need to obtain a job, find better employment opportunities or get more education to improve their current line of work.”
LDSJobs.org is not a website to help job seekers find a job working for the Church, it provides members with resources that are current and relevant to finding work in the general job market. It allows users to create an online profile that can be viewed by potential employers, access to a giant database of open job positions, research articles that contain tips and proven techniques relevant to finding a job and testimonials from job seekers that have found jobs using the tools on LDSjobs.org.
“The hope is that individuals will come to the site and build a profile, search the site and find content that is relevant as well as connect with an LDS employment or self-reliance center near them,” said Brother Anderson. “There are so many things on the website that can assist job seekers. There is information that can help people sell themselves to an employer and become more marketable. People can also request personal coaching from staff at the center and enroll in the accelerated job search program. This program helps job seekers identify contacts and get face-to-face interviews so they can have a better chance to get employment.”
Creating an online profile is easy. Members can log in using their LDS account and complete a resume providing job experience, skills and previous employment. Users are also prompted to create a “Me in 30 Seconds” statement. Basically this statement is a short and simple way to let potential employers know who an individual is and why he or she should be hired.
Next users can customize their account to flesh out the specific details of their profile. For example, if a user wants to find more educational opportunities or start a business, he or she can set one of those categories as a personal area of focus. The system even allows a person to set personalized goals and action plans, as well as create a list of desired job titles.
Once a person’s profile is 90 percent complete, it can be made visible to potential employers who are looking to hire employees. Job seekers will also be able to locate an employment resource center (ERC) (in the U.S. and Canada or self reliance center (SRC) (outside the U.S. and Canada) near them. “At an ERC or SRC, job seekers can meet with missionaries who are called and set apart to coach and assist others through the job process,” said Brother Anderson. “These missionaries carry the Spirit to assist them in their work. It’s a wonderful advantage for helping job seekers.”
Additionally, there are job-related activities such as self-employment and career workshops at the centers to help gather information and insight on how to start a business or improve current employment status. Even if job seekers are unable to come in to a resource center and meet with somebody in person, they can receive information, coaching and help over the telephone or through email.
Potential employers use the online job database to find employees because it is networked with more than 300 offices in 53 countries. LDSJobs is a worldwide site that supplements brick and mortar facilities with online resources. Employers can meet with representatives of LDSJobs.org to discuss their staffing needs and find good, qualified candidates. “Job seekers can search for jobs based on their own criteria or even save their specific searches so they can be notified later of new jobs that meet their specified criteria,” said Brother Anderson.
Another great resource on the website is a large collection of articles that contain valuable information for job seekers. For example, here are a few of the articles listed on the site:
A Beginners Guide to Social Media is intended for individuals with little to no social media experience. It outlines the current popular social media channels, and how each one can be used to enhance a professional network. Even for those who frequently use one or two social channels, this article might be helpful to help them identify other opportunities for networking that they aren’t currently taking advantage of.
How To Network Through Social Media is for individuals who use social media for personal social interactions, and aren’t sure were to start when using them professionally. It has a brief outline of a few popular channels, but also teaches basic principles of how to reach your social network in valuable ways.
5 Things You Can Do On Social Media Today to Find a Job is designed for job seekers who are looking for immediate action steps they can take to find employment. These tips can help those looking for employment become aware of more possible job openings and have the advantage during an interview.
The site also contains testimonials from real people who for one reason or another needed help in finding a job. For example, the site tells the story of Ben Peterson who lost his job the day after Thanksgiving in 2008. On the site he said, “I found out on Monday of that week that Friday would be my last day. I had a family of six kids, and it was just before Christmas.”
Even though it was during the holidays and the pressure of providing for a large family were present, Brother Peterson kept a positive attitude and got to work finding a job. “I felt pretty positive at first, he said. And thinking to himself, he said, “The economy is kind of in the tank right now. There’s probably going to be more job layoffs here in the future. I’m getting a head start on this.”
Brother Peterson’s strategy started with a goal to apply for 10 jobs a day but as time passed and he was not finding work, he applied for fewer jobs until he was only applying for two jobs a week. “It was really discouraging,” Brother Peterson said. “You get placed in a situation like this, and it’s how you come out in the end that defines who you are.”
The website explains that one day, after more than six months of searching for work, Brother Peterson was reading to his children from the Book of Mormon. They were reading about how Nephi and his brothers returned to Jerusalem to get the plates. Nephi and his brothers tried to obtain the brass plates from Laban a couple of times before they were successful.
“As I was reading this with my kids,” Brother Peterson said, “it began to dawn on me that I was just like the brothers. I was trying to obtain a job, or trying to obtain the brass plates, and I was going about it using my own wisdom, using my own understanding, and using my own skills, my own knowledge.”
For Brother Peterson it was the realization that Nephi didn’t obtain his goal of getting the Brass plates until he followed the Spirit. It was at this point that Brother Peterson decided to attend a career workshop and networking group at a Church employment resource center near him to see if he could get additional help.
At the workshop, Brother Peterson learned some great tips for his job search. Staff members helped him transform his three-page résumé into one page. He developed a “Me in 30 Seconds” statement and additional power statements that he could use in his job search.
The result was getting an interview with a company looking to hire, a follow-up interview four days later, and two more interviews with the company a week after that. Four weeks after the interview process began with the company, Brother Peterson was working again.
The LDSJobs.org website said, “In the same way that the Lord led Nephi to obtain the brass plates, Brother Peterson felt the Spirit led him to the employment resource center where he learned more about job seeking so he could get a job.”
More than 58,000 people worldwide were assisted in finding employment in 2014 through the help of LDSJobs.org and the Church’s employment resource centers and self-reliance centers. For more articles about finding employment and succeeding professionally, visit LDSJobs.org.