During your job search, you will generate lots of files. If you want to be more productive and keep your sanity, you need to use all tools at your disposal to track resume versions, contacts, cover letters, meetings, etc.

The following are easy suggestions to keep your job search organized:

  • Create folders on your computer, each with the name of the Company you are applying for a job. Within each folder, save all files that belong to the job search efforts with that company. Ensure you standardize the names, so within each company folder, names remain the same, such as coverletter10-14.doc, or resumeemailed10-14, myreferences.doc, peopleImet.doc, interview1-assessment.doc, etc.
  • Create a job search spreadsheet: you need to keep track of each job you apply for. The following are suggestions for columns you should include in your spreadsheet:

o Website where the job description was found, and if you needed to create a login/password for that website, you might as well include them here.
o The job title, job identifier number, employer name, date/time you applied.
o The file name of the resume and (if any) cover letter sent.
o Contact information for the employer or recruiter, if any.
o Interview, date of the interview, contact information of person you met, and a note column where you can assess the interview.
o Follow up information (phone calls, email, etc.), date, and next steps.
o Feedback received from the contact at the organization.

  • Create a networking spreadsheet with all your contacts. Record name, contact information, date of contact, reason for networking with that person, and outcome/next steps.
  • You could also create another spreadsheet to record networking events, association or society meetings you attended, when you attended, and who you met there.
  • Last but not least, use your email calendar to create meeting alerts, and create job search folders within your email to organize all email received/sent.