How Long Does It Take To Find a Job in 2023? (& How to Speed It Up)
Flexjobs says 3-6 months.
The Mom Project says 8 weeks.
And yet, none entirely answers that burning question: how long does it take to find a job? That’s exactly what we’re going to tackle in this post.
First, we'll look at why the definitive answer to this question is always, “it depends.” Then we’ll look at how some factors influence job-hunting timelines.
Finally, before we’re through, we’ll share five simple steps you can take to speed up the job search process.
Let’s dive in!
How long does it take to find a job?
As you would imagine, the amount of time it takes to get a job depends on many factors, like the :
- Strength of the economy
- Growth or decline within your specific field
- Qualification requirements for the role you want
- Quality of tools you use in the job search process
The sad truth is that there is no “one-size-fits-all” solution to this question. This can make it difficult to set reasonable expectations for how long it takes to finally land a job.
For people entering the current job market, finding a new job can be an overwhelming endeavor.
And for those laid off from the workforce, it can be intimidating to jump back on that horse. In those cases, the U.S. Bureau of labor statistics showed the median unemployment duration was nine weeks as of January 2023.
Some job seekers may be able to secure a new position quickly, while others may face longer waits and multiple rejections.
Since it’s such a nuanced question, let's look at some of the most common factors that influence how long it takes to get a job.
Factors that affect job hunting timelines
The strength of the economy
The strength of the economy has a significant impact on your job search timeline. When the economy is strong, more opportunities are available, and competition for jobs can be less intense.
And here’s some good news: while the U.S. Chamber predicts a slight recession at the start of 2023, they’re more optimistic about the economy's strength as the year continues.
Growth or decline in your specific field
More opportunities are typically available when an industry grows, and employers are more likely to seek new hires.
But, as you would expect, fewer opportunities will be available when a field declines.
The most recent example is when the world watched as the “big tech” bubble burst near the end of 2022. In 2023, according to Crunchbase, 77,000 workers have already been laid off in the tech sector, along with large companies announcing hiring freezes (Google, Microsoft, Twitter).
Openness to in-house vs. remote work
With the rise of remote work due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s been an increase in businesses that allow employees to work from home.
For many job seekers, this is excellent news.
More remote jobs mean you can find more opportunities in your field from anywhere – if you’re willing to work from home.
If you prefer in-house work, though, the job-hunting process might take longer as it is limited to the job opportunities available in your area.
Quality of your tools in the job-hunting process
Generic job boards chock-full of positions that have received thousands of applications will only get you so far – which is to say not very far at all. If you don’t invest in the right tools to set yourself apart from the competition, it will take longer to get an interview.
At the end of the day, plenty of solutions are available to help you find a job more quickly.
With that in mind, let’s look at how to approach the job-hunting process as efficiently as possible.
How to find a job more quickly in 5 steps
1) Set realistic criteria for the job you want to land
Before you begin job hunting, it’s best to know which types of jobs are worth the chase. In other words, you should be crystal clear on the jobs you’re interested in and qualified for.
Common questions to ask yourself at this stage would include:
- What industry or field am I hoping to get a job in?
- Do I have the skills for the job I want, or do I need to develop new skills?
- What level am I aiming for (entry-, mid-, or management-level work)?
- What is my desired salary?
- Am I willing to work in-house, or does it have to be remote?
- If I am willing to work in-house, am I willing to relocate?
Your goal is to figure out the roles you should be applying to before the job application process has even started.
That way, as you begin your job search, you can efficiently filter out positions that won’t interest you.
2) Update your LinkedIn account
You’ve got an idea of the job you want (and you’re qualified for, of course). Now, it’s time to update your public image.
And by that, we mean giving your LinkedIn profile a much-needed makeover.
Having an up-to-date profile (using Teal's LinkedIn Profile Review tool) allows job hunters to showcase their skills and experience to potential employers and increase their visibility to recruiters and hiring managers. It also allows job seekers to connect with professionals in their field, which can help them find job opportunities.
But the most important reason? You want to start on the right foot with potential employers.
This is especially true as employers often check an applicant's LinkedIn during hiring.
Need a bit of help getting started? Check out this post on five ways to optimize your LinkedIn profile.
3) Start looking for job openings that fit your criteria
There are three main ways you can go about job hunting:
- Reaching out to your network
- Hiring a professional or “reverse recruiter”
- Searching online job boards
Let’s look at each method individually.
Reaching out to your network
According to Zippia, “85% of jobs are found through networking, and 70% of jobs are never publicly published.”
In other words, networking is important.
Reach out to your network, let them know you are looking for a job, and ask for their assistance in any way they can.
While it can be uncomfortable to ask friends, family, and colleagues for help, networking can significantly reduce the time it takes to get a job.
Hiring a reverse recruiter
You know how recruiters and headhunters work for large companies to find top talent?
A reverse recruiter works for the top talent (a.k.a. YOU) to find top companies.
This can be a huge temptation to job seekers who want benefits like:
- Expanded resources with a professional who has the right tools
- Increased visibility through a larger professional network
- Career guidance from someone who has already led others down this path
The only problem with reverse recruiters? They’re not cheap.
But if that small investment leads to a larger salary in your dream job, it’d be hard to argue against the value of these unique consultants. If you’re serious about getting a quality job quickly, reverse recruiters are an option worth exploring.
There are many websites where you can search for roles by filtering the criteria you determined in step one. These are websites like:
You can find more examples here.
This can be a cost-effective alternative to hiring a career coach or reverse recruiter to place you with a company.
Many of these tools are free to start and will help you find the type of job listing that meets your location, qualifications, interests, and salary requirements.
4) Personalize your resume and cover letter
First, let’s chat about your cover letters
Cover letters are a thorn in the side of job seekers everywhere. For many of us, they’re mind-numbingly tedious to create from scratch – let alone trying to personalize them for each application.
And yet, that level of personalization matters.
The good news is that you don’t need to be a professional writer to create a custom cover letter.
With the help of generative AI, like ChatGPT, you can write a personalized cover letter with just a few clicks. For a detailed breakdown of how that works, check out this guide: How to use ChatGPT to write your cover letter.
But now you can use AI directly in your TealHQ dashboard to generate a customized cover letter in seconds:
This matches your cover letter content with the specific job you want, so you’ll have a tailored message to each hiring manager who views your application.
What about your resume?
For that, we recommend trying out Teal’s AI Resume Builder:
You can upload your resume directly or import data about your work history from your existing LinkedIn profile. Then, you can modify the results to showcase your achievements and qualifications.
Not a confident writer? Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered.
With the help of AI, Teal gives you access to the latest in generative AI. That means you have a built-in writing assistant to get the first draft of your resume sections started:
Use the AI integration feature within Teal's AI Resume Builder to generate achievements. To get quality, metric-driven achievements, make sure to attach a job description to incorporate relevant keywords.
Then polish the writing and you’ll have a high-impact resume in a fraction of the time it would’ve taken you to write from scratch.
From there, easily create a duplicate of your resume from the main menu:
Then customize the language you use in the duplicate and the achievements you showcase depending on the job you’re applying to.
You’ll see how fast you can create a highly personalized resume and cover letter that resonates with the hiring manager and get you into the interview process – and, hopefully, a job offer.
All that’s left? Keeping track of all those outbound applications.
5) Send, track, and follow up with applications
Lastly, there’s a step that most applicants forget (or ignore): you need to track the applications you’ve sent so you can promptly follow up with companies.
Need some help sending follow-up emails? Use this guide to learn how to follow up with an application (an email template is included).
The problem is that you’re likely sending out dozens of resumes simultaneously. That means it can be difficult to track which companies have responded and which need a friendly reminder that you exist.
Teal built a tool to help job hunters stay organized. You can use our Job Tracking platform to keep all of your applications in a centralized location. This allows you to:
Save job searches
Add your job title, the original posting URL, company name, and job description below. Then save your job and track how it progresses through the hiring process:
Organize your job searches
Keep all of your applications organized in a user-friendly dashboard:
Optimize your applications
Make yourself ultra-competitive by optimizing your resumes and cover letters with Teal’s AI-driven insights:
A final word of encouragement… for the impatient
Look, job hunting can be tough. But it doesn’t have to be.
And while there isn’t a cookie-cutter answer to know how long it takes to get a job offer, we can promise you this: if you use the tips and tools suggested in this post, it’ll take less time than it otherwise would have.
So try Teal 100% free today and watch the powerful AI-driven platform that helps you secure your dream job fast!