Your Job Search: On Fleek

"On fleek." You see and hear that phrase everywhere, but what on earth does it mean?

The short answer? "On point."

When something is "on fleek," it is perfectly executed and looks great -- that's why you so often hear it associated with fashion and makeup. Now that you have an idea of what it means, here are some strategies to get your job search on fleek this year.

Landing the All-Important Entry-Level Position

Landing your first "real" job out of college or entering a new field can feel like an uphill battle. How do you get the experience you need if you can't get your foot in the door? If you've been spinning your wheels, here are some strategies to consider:

  • Connect with alumni. People maintain college spirit throughout their lives. Join your alma mater's alumni newsletter, forum, etc. Connect with and network with alums in your desired field.
  • Stay focused. Many entry-level job seekers apply to any job they see. Stick to positions in your field that you are truly qualified for -- and interested in. Your time is best spent working towards opportunities with real return.
  • Volunteer. See if you can find a small nonprofit that needs volunteers with your skills. This will give you real-world experience for your resume.
  • Work with a recruiter. Conducting a search on your own can be frustrating. A recruiter can help you polish your resume, perfect your interview techniques, and connect you with a job that actually matches your skills and goals.

Navigating the Changing World of Blue Collar Work

Blue collar jobs are changing as manufacturing and logistics become much more dependent upon computers. The jobs don't necessarily require four-year degrees, but they do require specific skill sets that can't necessarily be learned on the job.

Stay relevant in your field by using these tips:

  • Research good-paying jobs in your field. Read lots of job descriptions. Pay attention to the types of skills and certifications those jobs require.
  • Take classes. Enroll in classes at a local vocational school or community college that align with the skills and certs you found in your research.
  • Take a step down. See if you can get an entry-level position with a company that offers some form of tuition reimbursement to help you cover expenses.
  • Join a talent network. Staffing firms that specialize in blue collar work can be a great resource. They can connect you with positions that match your skill set to help you gain experience while you get certified.

Blue collar jobs have taken a hit over the years, but that's only because the landscape is shifting. Learn all you can about the new "gold collar" jobs that are gaining speed in the labor market. The right skills and certifications will help you land a job with a great salary -- and a great future.

No Degree? No Problem.

Degrees are important, and they are often listed as job requirements. However, if you've got the necessary skills and experience, but not the necessary piece of paper, don't fret. You can position yourself well through some simple strategies:

  • Rework your resume. Reorder your past jobs from most relevant positions to least relevant. Hiring managers want to know that you can handle the requirements of their jobs, so make it as easy as possible to see that you have the skills they need.
  • Get past electronic scanners. Be sure that your relevant skills are listed in your cover letter and page one of your resume. This will help you pass automated screening software.
  • Work with a ringer. A professional recruiter can help you overcome potential objections from hiring managers. They present your case to the employer ahead of time, acting as your own personal PR rep.

It may feel like the odds are against you if you don't have a degree, but if you work hard and demonstrate that you have the skills and experience to do the job, hiring managers will pay attention.

The economy may be recovering, but the job market is still a very competitive place. Knowing how to overcome common hurdles will help you get your job search on fleek in 2016.