EFFICIENCY IS KEY: MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR JOB SEARCH
Planning to begin a medical coding job search, or any job search, can be daunting; there are so many avenues to pursue, so many different types of coding jobs available. To complete an effective search and find the perfect job for short and long-term goals, organization and research are key elements to the process.
Internet and database searches have changed dramatically over the years. Gone are the days of the very first internet search tools; some of you may remember entering a search term only to receive a message that no results were available. I remember thinking, bewildered, “across the entire internet, there is ZERO information that can help me?” Luckily, today’s search engines and job sites make the search process easy and very rewarding.
In fact, some search results can be TOO rewarding, yielding thousands of jobs, some of which may what you’re looking for, and some of which may be commercials and advertising disguised as a job listing. I hope that none of you experience the disappointing situation of being very excited about a position, and submitting an application, only to hear back that the position isn’t ACTUALLY available, but they’ll keep your resume on file. I’ve been through that process, and the disappointment is enough to make someone want to give up on the entire process.
On that note, in order to prevent lost time and discouraging results, let’s talk about how research plays into preparing and executing an effective and efficient job search.
As is true in many stages of your career, research will prove one of your best friends. Beginning your job search process with research in several areas can give insight into your interests, and into the companies and organizations available who offer positions in your area of concentration. The results of research can save time and energy in several areas of your job search:
- Opportunities in the Field of Your Choice: We talked in the “Finding Your Passion” section about concentrating on finding a career that will leave you fulfilled and happy with your work. Conduct research into companies or facilities in your geographical area, or remote positions that offer work in the subject areas that interest you. Don’t limit yourself, really branch out! Have you driven by a building and noticed a company sign? Look into it! Do you have a friend who works in accounting of a company that handles medical supplies? Explore the website; most likely there is a department that might interest you! Don’t discount governmental departments and jobs, either; the application process for governmental work is definitely more complicated than private sector, but the opportunities are innumerable!
- Keywords to Limit Search Results: Use what you’ve learned to create keywords for your job search. For instance, if you’re interested in Cardiology, add “Cardiology” to your usual search terms. Does contracting interest you? Use “physician contracting” to your search for jobs in your area. The addition of these keywords will narrow the results and save you time and energy. And who can argue with job search results that are a concise list of jobs that relate to your greatest coding interests?
- Information on the Best Companies: Every coder knows another coder who has had a bad experience with a company or department of coders. Everyone can recite a rumor or two about companies that interview candidates and then are never heard from again, or companies who have incredibly quick turnover of their staff. Rumors are rumors, but it never hurts to research the companies and departments in which you have some interest. Ask around about the team and company culture. Is management supportive? Do they encourage continuing education? A company who completes short-term coding projects could be more likely to lay-off coders during their down time. A company who keeps coders long-term may have a reputation for being very strict with time off. Neither of these characteristics are negative, at least not for every coder. Every environment is different for every coder. However, research into the way companies and department operate is imperative to find the right job and the right environment for you.