How to Save Money During Your Job Search

If you are in the process of looking for some new work, chances are, you may be a little more conscious about your finances.

Unfortunately, many individuals seem to spend a lot of money with the intention for looking for a job. In efforts to present yourself best or stand out from your competition, you may be tempted to spend a little extra cash on something that ultimately won’t make a difference in the hiring process.

How to Save Money During Your Job Search

Here are just a few ways you can limit your spending while still giving it your all.

1. Don’t pay for hiring agencies if you can avoid it.

Many hiring agencies will charge you a fee for their services, however, there are also many other job hunting methods that are inexpensive or completely free. You should be doing some independent searching, no matter you professional profile or skill level.

There is always the old-fashioned way of checking the classifieds or showing initiative by contacting desired workplaces directly. It is also a great idea to reach out to your possible connections and take advantage of networking.

It’s also good to take a look at job sites that are either specific to your industry or geared to your area. These sites are less frequently used and the competition may not be as fierce as the large aggregators or more general sites.

2. Don’t go crazy with the wardrobe.

Certainly, it is true that you should try to dress up for your job interviews.

However, this does not mean that you should shop for new outfits or rush over to dry cleaning every time you get an interview. Unless you will be expected to really dress up if you get the position, you really won’t need to come in with a pricy suit or expensive dress.

There are many appropriate outfits that will make a great impression without breaking the bank.

3. Don’t try gifting anything.

Especially when you are applying to a highly-competitive position, you may want to try to find a way to get the interviewers to like you a little bit more.

Giving gifts to the hiring managers, or even the entire office, is not unheard of, but is definitely something that’s incredibly unnecessary. While you have good intentions, these actions often do more harm than good.

Your gifting may come off as desperate or even bribery. There are many other ways to earn the favor of the hiring team. Just stick to handing out copies of your resumes.

4. Control What You Can On the Internet

One way to get a huge leg up on the competition without spending any money is by doing some basic things online to get yourself noticed.

Almost all hiring managers are searching candidates on Google these days. Make sure that your online reputation is up to snuff. As long as nothing super negative is out there about you, this should be a relatively straightforward process.

Basically, you’re just pumping up the good things about you and trying to bury the negative things. Don’t assume. Most people have both positive and negative mentions in search results and on social media.

5. Don’t show up to interviews for jobs you won’t take.

When you are looking for a job, you may feel morally obligated to attend to every interview your offered, even if you don’t like the job.

Sometimes, we have to take on jobs we don’t like until a better offer finds its way. In these cases where you really need work and will take just about anything, invest your all in these interviews. However, if you know you would ultimately never accept the job offer, you may want to rethink this. Sure, every interview is an experience.

However, in cases where this interview is far away or long and you end up costing a lot of money in transport or lost time, you might be better off skipping the interview. Know yourself and how to pick your battles. If you end up showing up to a lot of interviews you don’t want, you end up wasting a lot of resources.

6. Don’t forget this is all tax deductible

The IRS will formally recognize most of your job-hunting related activities as tax deductible. While it doesn’t necessarily cover everything, you can always check its information site to see what exactly you can mark back as deductible on your tax forms.

Hunting for a job is certainly a costly experience. There are many simple things you can keep in mind in order to limit your spending until you get the job of your dreams.


Susan Ranford is an expert on job market trends, hiring, and business management. She is the Community Outreach Coordinator for New York Jobs. In her blogging and writing, she seeks to shed light on issues related to employment, business, and finance to help others understand different industries and find the right job fit for them.


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