The state's unemployment rate dropped to 9.8 percent in July — the first time it has been in single digits in more than a year. You can read more about that here.
It's a small sliver of good news and a reminder that as companies begin to hire - even if it's ever so slowly - you're more likely to get the nod if you're prepared. Ford R. Myers, a career coach and author of "Get The Job You Want, Even When No One's Hiring," (John Wiley & Sons,) says autumn is a good time to focus on your career.
"Hiring managers are back in their offices making employment decisions for the fall and early 2011," Myers says.
He offers these tips:
1. Create and control your Internet image. Whether it's LinkedIn, YouTube or Facebook, every professional should have an online presence. Most employers research job candidates on the Internet before making hiring decisions. Therefore, it is vitally important that you take control of your online identity, and carefully monitor the "personal brand" you're building on the Internet.
2. Tune into the network. Early fall is one of the best times of the year to make new connections and find new opportunities. With folks returning from vacation and refocusing on work, there are many fall networking events, planning meetings and group happenings. These are ideal environments for productive networking.
3. Perform an internal career audit. September is a perfect time to take an honest look at your career — where you've been, where you are today, and where you'd like to go. Identify new goals based on your own definition of career success, take action, and then follow through.
4. Update your career "tool kit." Most job seekers use only their resume as the cornerstone of their search because their other "tools" are weak or nonexistent. But there are many other documents you should have: accomplishment stories, positioning statement, one-page biography, target company list, contact list, professional references, letters of recommendation, and more. These items are important not just to land the next job — but also to maximize your long-term career success.
"There really couldn't be a better time than September to launch a professional job search. Hiring managers are back in their offices making employment decisions for the fall and early 2011," says Myers.