Ms. Clark has managed the administrative duties of several small businesses and has collected unemployment on occasion herself.
How to Meet Job-Search Requirements While Receiving Unemployment Benefits
Most people who qualify to receive unemployment benefits must meet ongoing requirements to continue to receive those benefits. One such requirement is to make a specified number of job searches every week. But what qualifies as a job search?
Is Submitting an Application the Only Thing That Qualifies as a Job Search?
Lots of people believe that only an application submitted to a prospective employer qualifies as a job search, but that is not true. There are many different activities related to your job search that are acceptable to your unemployment office as efforts to obtain full-time employment.
For starters, be sure to register for work with your state unemployment office. Being registered with this office is usually a requirement in order to qualify for unemployment benefits. Be sure to keep all information on your account (e.g., your address, phone number, and so on) current. Check the information regularly to make sure it is up to date as proof that you are seriously and actively searching for employment. Your unemployment office keeps a computer record of how often you review your information for accuracy, so be sure to do that at least once a month (or sooner if any of your information changes).
Each of the 12 activities listed below counts as one job search in the state of Texas. Each state runs its own unemployment office, however, so requirements, rules, and laws may differ somewhat from what is listed here. Most or all of these actions may count in your state as well, but be sure to check with your local unemployment office to confirm this. They should have a list either in print or online to guide you. Be sure to keep a good record of the date you engaged in each activity and exactly what you did.
12 Actions That Count as Job Search Activities
- Get Job Referrals and Follow Up on Them
- Attend Instructional Workshops
- Participate in Skills Assessments
- Access Labor Market Information
- Attend Job Fairs and Similar Events
- Register With Temp Agencies and Private Unemployment Agencies
- Apply for Jobs and Send Out Resumés
- Contact Potential Employers
- Keep Track of Your Interviews
- Use an Online Job-Search Site
- Visit and Talk With Potential Employers
- Check the Help Wanted Ads and Follow Up on Them
Note: Each of these activities is described in detail below. Read on to learn where to go, what to do, and what records to keep in relation to each of these actions.
Job-Search Activities You Can Do at Your Local Unemployment Office
Most state unemployment centers offer a variety of resources to help you find a job that meets your needs. The following four activities should be done at or in conjunction with your local unemployment office.
1. Get Job Referrals and Follow Up on Them
Be sure to register with your local state unemployment office as soon as you apply for unemployment benefits. Registering for work is usually a requirement for qualifying for these benefits. Once you have registered for work, many state unemployment centers will match your previous work experience and stated job skills with known available job listings. Job referrals will then be placed on your account so that you can follow up on them. Be sure that you do follow up on them and keep a detailed record of the results as proof.
Be aware that you are expected to follow up on all job referrals, and failing to do so can be detrimental to the future of your unemployment benefits. That does not mean you must apply for every job referred to you, but it does mean that you must act on each referral in some way. You may be expected to give reasons why you are not interested in certain referrals. Each referral you follow up on counts as one job search.
2. Attend Instructional Workshops
Take advantage of instructional workshops at your local unemployment center. Learn how to write a great resumé. Learn how to ace a job interview. Take advantage of all of the expertise your state unemployment job center has to offer. Every time you participate in one of these workshops or receive private instruction from one of the unemployment center’s specialists, it counts as one job search, plus you improve your job-search skills and your chances of finding a suitable job. Keep a detailed record of your workshop activities and any consultations or instruction you get from work center specialists.
3. Participate in Skills Assessments
Take advantage of skills assessments for the purpose of matching you with the best occupations to fit your skills. Each time you participate in one of these assessments, it counts as one job search.
4. Access Labor Market Information
Your state unemployment office has the most recent labor market information, and that information will tell you who in your local area is hiring, what positions are open, what job skills are required, and a host of other important information that can help you find a new job. Every time you take advantage of this information, it counts as one job search.
Job-Search Activities You Can Do Elsewhere
The following actions also count as job searches for the purpose of maintaining unemployment benefits, but they can be done from home or elsewhere instead of at the unemployment office.
5. Attend Job Fairs and Similar Events
Take part in job fairs and career club meetings and attend job-search seminars and job-related workshops that will help you improve your job-search skills and expand your professional skills. They may also inform you of job openings you would not otherwise hear about.
These events need not be sponsored by your state unemployment office. They may be sponsored by private employers and organizations or may simply be a group of unemployed people who get together regularly to share job-search information.
Networking with other people will often pay off better than cold calling or even answering ads in your local newspaper or online, especially if you can say you were referred by an employee that is already a valued part of their workforce. Each time you attend one of these events, it counts as one job search. Keep good records of any events or programs you attend.
6. Register With Temp Agencies and Private Unemployment Agencies
Register for work with temporary employment agencies or private unemployment agencies. The act of registering counts as one job search. Every day you contact one of these agencies to learn if they have any suitable leads, it counts as one job search. If you contact one such agency asking if they have found any job matches for you every single workday Monday through Friday, you will have made five qualifying job searches. If you contact two different temporary or private employment agencies every single day Monday through Friday to learn if they have any leads for you, you have made 10 job searches.
Be sure to keep good records. Include what unemployment or temp agency you contacted, the date and time of your call, the name of the person you spoke to, what the conversation included, and specific information about any job leads you may have received.
7. Apply for Jobs and Send Out Resumés
When you mail, fax, or email a job application or resumé to an employer as directed in a public job notice/help wanted ad/job-opening listing, that counts as one job search. Each additional resumé or application sent counts as an additional job search.
8. Contact Potential Employers
Contacting an employer who may be reasonably expected to have openings in work you are qualified to do—even if that employer has not listed any specific job openings—counts as one job search. Large employers often have several job openings at any given time. Be sure to keep a good record as to whether you contacted the employer by phone, mail, or email. Did you send the employer a resumé and cover letter? Keep a note of that along with all other pertinent details.
9. Keep Track of Your Interviews
There are so many applicants for most job listings nowadays that the human resources departments of many businesses choose to narrow down the most favorable applicants through a series of several interviews, often starting with a phone interview. Every time you have an interview, whether it is a phone interview, group interview, or private interview, it counts as one job search. Even if you interview with a particular company five or more times, each interview counts as one job search.
Keep good records. Take a notebook to your interviews and also keep a notebook near the phone where you can jot down important information like the names of the people who are interviewing you and their titles. Always record the date, time, and place of interviews and whether they were over the phone or in person. Sometimes, a company representative will conduct a short phone interview and then schedule you for an in-person interview soon afterward. That call counts as one job search even though it was a combination of an interview and the scheduling of a future in-person interview. The in-person interview also counts as a job-search activity.
10. Use an Online Job-Search Site
Register with online job search sites like Monster.com, Simplyhired.com, Indeed.com. or others. Registering for one of these sites counts as one job search, and each additional site you register for counts as well.
Every day that you go to an online job search site, it counts as one job search. If you have registered to receive notices in your email when new job listings that you are qualified for become available, then every time you open and examine a notice, it counts as one job search.
For example, if you are registered to receive new job-listing alerts with five different job sites similar to Monster.com or Careerbuilder.com, all five job-search sites send you a notice every day of the week (Monday through Sunday), and you open every alert notice and review the jobs listed, that counts as 5 job searches every day, or 35 job searches in a week!
If you apply over the internet for any jobs, whether they are on the website of a prospective employer or on a job-search site like Monster.com, it counts as one job search for each application sent. If you apply for three different jobs through an online job-search site, each application counts as one job search.
11. Visit and Talk With Potential Employers
If you walk into a place of business that might reasonably have a job opening that meets your job qualifications and needs, and you talk with the receptionist, an agent in the human resources department, or anyone who works at that place of business about whether there are job openings and what they are for, that counts as one job search. If you fill out an application on-site, as you might do at a fast-food chain or other similar business, that also counts as one job search.
12. Check the Help-Wanted Ads and Follow Up on Them
Every day that you check your local newspaper’s help-wanted section to look for suitable job listings, whether in a hard copy or online, it counts as one job search. If you check the help wanted sections of newspapers from nearby towns to which you could reasonably commute, that counts as another job search.
In addition, every time you follow up on one of the newspaper listings that fits your skillset, it counts as a job search. So you get one job search for checking the newspaper listings and another for each job you follow up on. Be sure to follow up with jobs that meet your requirements and job qualifications.
Good Job-Search Records Are Imperative and Cannot Be Overemphasized
Always keep meticulous records of all your job-search efforts. It is not a matter of if your state employment office will ask for those records but rather a matter of when they will ask for them (as a condition of continuing your unemployment benefits). To save yourself a headache and a lot of stress, keep good records from day one.
Do not take shortcuts. Do what you are supposed to do to obtain another job. I think the different job-search activities listed above are fairly easy to accomplish, so it shouldn't take a lot of effort to accumulate several job searches every week. Most of the time, the state employment office only requires five or six job searches per week to qualify for benefits, so there is no reason not to make at least that many, and it's often quite easy to make many more. Of course, the more job-search activities you engage in, the quicker you are likely to find another suitable job.
Keep in mind that falsifying job-search activity can mean losing your benefits and even being prosecuted for fraud, so never do it. There are usually so many different activities a person can engage in that count as job-search activities with their state unemployment office that there is really no good reason for falsifying anything.
If you are serious about seeking a new job, as you should be, it makes sense to treat your job search like a job itself. Put in the same number of hours searching for another job that you would normally spend if you were working for someone else. The more determined you are and the more effort you put in searching for a new job, the sooner you are likely to find one that meets your needs.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
Question: If I'm not able to go to a job fair, will I lose my unemployment benefits?
Answer: When you are receiving unemployment benefits, your local unemployment office may give you leads on jobs they think you may qualify for. You do not have to always follow up on every single lead, but you will need to give a reason why you aren't doing so.
Sometimes you may not have the necessary skills or requirements for a job or jobs your unemployment office has suggested. If that is the case, give that reason for not following up on the job. As far as the job fair is concerned, if you have a good reason for not attending at all, and it has been recommended by your unemployment office, make sure to have a good reason why you couldn't attend.
Do your best to follow up on as many job leads from your unemployment office as you can. Make sure to meet or exceed the number of job searches required each week so that if your schedule conflicts with the job fair, for example, you can show that you were not lazy and that you were involved in other activities that you hoped would lead to a job.
You need not follow up on every single job suggestion from your unemployment office, but do try to check out as many as possible along with your other job search activities, as proof that you are making a serious effort to find a new job. If you do that you should not run into problems with receiving your unemployment.
Question: What is the minimum home-to-job distance for rejecting a job offer without losing unemployment benefits in Texas?
Answer: I have driven as long as an hour one way to reach my job. For some people that may be too long. It depends on one's physical health and other obligations one may have. I use time as a measure because how long it takes to drive 10 miles depends on the traffic you must deal with on a regular basis, plus the terrain and the weather. I was driving on Texas Interstate 35E. On a slow traffic day, I could do the same drive maintaining the speed limit in 25 minutes. In rush hour it took 50 or more minutes. It was impossible to maintain the speed limit, and there was always at least one accident tying things up
To get your best answer call your local unemployment office and discuss this issue with the people you will be dealing with if you make a claim. They will have the most current information.
Question: What if I apply for several different positions for one employer? Is that acceptable?
Answer: You can certainly apply for as many positions from one particular employer as you wish. If it were me and I did that, I would still look for openings listed by other employers. I think if one truly wants to find a job that suits their wants and needs, it makes sense to do a thorough search so that one doesn't miss out on a great opportunity.
© 2012 C E Clark
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on July 23, 2020:
Peggy Woods, thank you for sharing your thoughts, and the conditions you have observed on this subject in your area. So many people have lost jobs and the ban on evictions is about to run out as well. I shudder to think how many people, including families, may be out in the street, homeless, unless our useless senate decides to do something to help people. Expect it's a strain on their brains to help other people when they're so used to just helping themselves.
Stay safe and cool . . .
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on July 17, 2020:
We have several neighbors who used to work for oil and gas companies who have had their jobs terminated. One was a highly placed executive, and the other, a lawyer. This pandemic is causing upheavals in so many people's lives! While the executive was about a year away from retiring and will be OK financially, the lawyer still had years ahead to work, so she is now looking for another job. It will be tough right now to find one.
Your article is evergreen and very timely right now. Stay safe!
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on April 23, 2020:
Peggy Woods, thank you for stopping by. This is one of my more popular articles, because there is always someone somewhere wondering how unemployment works. With millions of people unemployed, the government's website has crashed and keeps doing so, I have heard. Some people have been trying to get online to apply for unemployment for a couple of weeks with no luck getting through. Has to be very hard for the right now with no money coming in.
While Trump insists there won't be a second wave, doctors and scientists say there will. Best to be cautious and stay safe. Take care . . .
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 15, 2020:
With all the losses of jobs due to COVID-19, this article of yours will surely be more important to read than ever. Hope that you are doing well. Stay safe!
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 01, 2018:
Lee Jones, calling a prospective employer to learn if they are hiring or have any open positions is a valid work search. Be sure to record what day and time you called and the name of the person you spoke to for your records in case your state unemployment office asks for verification.
Lee Jones on November 29, 2018:
Call prospective employer but not theri hiring. is this a valid work search in texas
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on October 29, 2018:
Robert Bonner, thank you for your inquiry. Sending your resumé is essentially the same thing as applying for a job. Each job application equals one job search in the state of Texas, and presumably other states as well.
robert bonner on October 29, 2018:
is emailing your resume a method of job search
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 11, 2016:
Sarah, thank you for bringing your situation to my attention. Requirements do change from time to time regarding anything and everything to do with government. I checked TWC’s website and it seems to me that requirement has not changed. Check it our for yourself . . .
Visit the Texas Workforce Commission’s website at the URL below.
There is a list of activities on this site that count as job search activities. The 3rd option on this site: “Register for work with a private employment agency, or placement facility of a school or college or university, if one is available to you in his or her occupation or profession. This is an acceptable work search activity; . . .”
When you register with an online employment agency like Monster.com, or one of the many others, you can ask them to send you a daily list of new job listings. When you read through that listing looking for a suitable job it is the same as visiting a private employment agency in person or going to the TWC website or to their office to search for suitable jobs. Registering with the online employment website is the same as signing up in person with an agency in your area.
There are additional things you can do that count towards the number of work searches you are required to make in order to keep your unemployment benefits coming. I have listed several different things in this article and I would recommend you visit the above website because they have additional options listed.
I recommend you call your local TWC again and ask to speak to a different person than the one you mentioned in your inquiry, ideally a supervisor. Ask him/her to be specific about whether searching a new set of listings emailed to you counts as a job search. That is after all what you are doing, and so it would be odd (I think) if they have changed that requirement. However, in the end you must work with your local TWC and meet whatever requirements they have, so be prepared if they choose to interpret the above option differently. The most important thing is NOT to lose your benefits.
It has been several years since I was told by a TWC agent that perusing the daily listings I received in my email counted as a job search. I received 5 different job listing newsletters daily from 5 different online employment sites. Looking through each list from the different websites daily each counted as one search and so I always had at least 5 job searches daily. If I applied for a job that was a separate activity and made 6 (or however many I applied for).
I hope this will help you and that everything will go well if you are now drawing unemployment benefits.
Sarah on November 09, 2016:
Regarding this in particular, "Every day that you go to an online job search site it counts as one job search. If you have registered to receive notices in your email when new job listings that you are qualified for become available, then every time you open that notice and check out those notices it counts as one job search.
For example, if you are registered to receive new job listing alerts with 5 different online job sites similar to Monster.Com or Career Builder.com, and all 5 job search sites send you a notice every day of the week (Monday through Sunday) and you open every alert notice and check out the jobs listed on the alerts from every one of the online job search sites, that counts as 5 job searches every day, or 35 job searches a week!"
Not sure if I mis-understood or perhaps this is a recent change, but I called the Texas Unemployment center to clarify if this indeed counts and they said no. It only counts if I applied to the openings sent to me.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on August 23, 2016:
Paul, thank you for stopping by and commenting. It is important for job seekers to make an effort and always show up for job interviews (or call and cancel if they have in fact found employment). Applicants should always follow up on job openings that they hear about and qualify for. Finding a new job is a job in itself for most people, and finding a job doesn't happen with no effort.
I find that a lot of people are confused about what is expected of them. They don't really understand what their responsibilities are and often fear situations where they are uncomfortable due to their misunderstandings. Some people dislike discussing things they don't understand and fear they will look foolish or be put on the spot for something they don't understand.
While I don't doubt there are some people who just want to collect benefits with as little effort as possible, I think the majority of people fail to meet their responsibilities because of ignorance. I really think more effort needs to be made to make sure people do know their responsibilities and how to meet them.
In fact, an educational presentation covering these things about unemployment insurance that seem so mysterious and confusing could be made by state employment agencies to high-school students in their schools. That way they will know what to do and I think be more likely to follow through on their responsibilities. There could also be a weekly class at the state unemployment office that new applicants were required to attend in order to receive benefits. The class could be open to the public, but a requirement of anyone applying for benefits. That would end the confusion and increase compliance with people on unemployment, and would hopefully help them find jobs much sooner as well.
I think if people were better informed about their responsibilities and how to meet them that you would find far fewer no shows to your interviews.
I appreciate your comment all the more because I think it exposes a need in the unemployment application process. Educating people about what is expected so that they are not confused and fearful of looking foolish, or of being put on the spot, would not only mean better compliance, but more people finding work sooner.
Paul on August 10, 2016:
I work for a recruiting firm and so many people use us to keep getting benefits and don't show for interviews and I have to report to DES. I take pride in reporting lazy unemployment feeders to DES.. they are a leach on society.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on March 16, 2015:
Thank you for commenting on this important subject and for sharing. So many people think only a job application counts towards the number of job searches required by unemployment offices, and they don't realize that the application and the interview are 2 different things and so each counts towards the required number of searches.
Deborah Carr from Orange County, California on March 15, 2015:
This is such important and useful information that I want to re-share it again. People really need to know how to do a job search, especially when they are also trying to collect unemployment insurance. Well done!
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on February 01, 2015:
Peggy W, thank you for commenting on this article and for the G+ and share. Not enough information is shared by the unemployment office, although it is there if one makes the effort. So many people fail to file for unemployment benefits, often because they don't think they will qualify, and sometimes simply because they don't know what to do, where to start. It's so easy to apply online and I hope more people will discover that and collect the benefits they are entitled to. They can make such a difference in getting through until a new job is found.
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on January 30, 2015:
With the price of gasoline dropping many people working for energy related businesses are now getting laid off. Many will be eligible for unemployment and although most will receive some type of information regarding this, I will once again share this well researched hub. Will also share on G+. Unemployment insurance is an important safety net for those lucky enough to have it.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on July 26, 2014:
Ruby, thank you for your inquiry. So glad if you found relief from your frustration of what entails an acceptable job search in the information in this article.
The guidelines here refer to the state of Texas. Every state has their own. Most states have similar guidelines, but if you are not living in Texas call your local unemployment office and verify that the things you are doing are in fact acceptable job search activities that count towards the number of searches you are required to make each week.
Everything you have mentioned in your comment would count as a job search in Texas. Make certain you keep good records. If you call a company write down the name of the person you talked to, their position in the company, the day and even the time you talked to them. The more info the better when it comes time to verify that you made that call. Get documentation for your work searches whenever possible and keep it even after you have reported to your unemployment office.
I used to have various job search websites email me new job openings every day. Saved some time searching through all the jobs I had already reviewed on their sites. Keep those mailings in their own folder in your email account to refer to if you should ever be asked to produce them. If asked you could print out copies of the jobs listed including the name of the website and the date you received that notice. Keep in your records what day you viewed those listings.
Never fail to check out the jobs that you are referred to by the unemployment office itself, or anyone else. Short of actually finding a job, there is nothing you can do that is more important than keeping good records so that you can prove you have done the things you report having done in search of a job.
Ruby on July 26, 2014:
This answered so many of my questions! I had been scavenging through the internet and UE booklet to try to figure out if things I had been doing count as a work search. I spend countless hours a day searching online for jobs, checking my daily (sometimes, hourly) job alert emails and it never fails that days or weeks can go by without finding a job I can/should apply for. Just to confirm...the following activities DO count as legit work search? 1) calling prospective employers via PHONE to inquire about any job openings, 2) contacting prospective employers via EMAIL to inquire about job openings, 3) searching online websites such as Careerbuilder, Monster, Indeed, 4) searching websites of companies in your related job field. Question..do searches online as stated in numbers 3 and 4 above count even if you don't find anything to apply for?
Thanks so much for your help! The headache I had developed by worrying about this has eased since reading this!! : )
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on May 08, 2014:
Thank you Peggy W for pinning this article!
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on May 07, 2014:
Since many people are still currently looking for work, I am going to once again share this hub of yours and pin it to Awesome Hubpages.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on April 27, 2014:
Thank you Deborah-Diane for sharing this article!
Deborah-Diane from Orange County, California on April 24, 2014:
With so many people still looking for jobs, I thought this would be helpful information to share again.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on February 11, 2014:
Steph, very glad if I could help at all. Best wishes in our job search!
Steph on February 10, 2014:
Thank you for your advice. That and your article was very helpful!
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on February 07, 2014:
Thank you for your inquiry Steph. I always recommend you contact your state employment agency for advice on any question as there are differences from one state to another. In your case, you should be able to contact someone from Texas WorkForce by phone, and their phone is less busy from Wednesday through Friday, and in the afternoons.
Your job searches outside the state of Texas should count like any other job searches so long as you are seeking full time work and you are reasonably qualified for the jobs you search/apply for. Just make sure to keep good records as you should be doing anyway. Good luck!
Steph on February 07, 2014:
I am unemployed and just applied for benefits in the state of Texas. I have been looking at jobs out of state, in the hope that I may be able to relocate. Do all the same rules apply in this case? More specifically, can I document and use my work search activities outside the state of Texas to count for unemployment in Texas?
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on January 08, 2014:
Thank you Deborah-Diane for sharing this article along with your thoughts. Something everyone should remember is that all of us contribute to our state unemployment agencies through our tax dollars. Those agencies are there to assist us in every way they can to find a suitable job. They can be helpful not only in the search, but in writing a great resumé, honing our interview skills, networking, and so much more. This is a valuable resource for anyone needing a job so it should not be overlooked.
Deborah-Diane from Orange County, California on January 04, 2014:
So many people are still looking for jobs; some of them are newly unemployed. I am resharing this for the people who are unsure of how to do a proper job search when they are newly unemployed!
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on October 30, 2013:
I am choosing to answer the questions you emailed me through Hubpages so that if anyone else has similar questions they may find a helpful answer here.
Here is a copy of your inquiry:
Hi, I had a question about your article on what qualifies as a job search. Could you mail a resume and cover letter to businesses where you would like to work? do you need to call them first or just send it through the mail unsolicited? And how would I list that on the search log?
You may mail a resumé with cover letter unsolicited to any employer you wish regardless of where they are located or based. Keep in mind that if you do, you may be going to a lot of expense and trouble for nothing. Even when resumés are solicited through various employment websites (Monster, Simply Hired, etc.) you may never receive so much as a response from the company you applied to as to whether or not they received your resumé.
To better utilize your time and cost of printing and mailing resumés you might want to call the prospective employer's human resources office to find out what openings they have and whether any of them meet your skills and requirements. That's assuming you have extended calling on your telephone (landline) so that you will incur no long distance charges or that you will not incur the cost of additional minutes on your cell phone, depending on which you plan to use.
If the company you are considering as a prospective employer is very large, it will likely have a website and very possibly a listing of all the jobs available there. Those listings are usually updated regularly so that if no jobs listed meet your requirements now, there may be one listed later today or tomorrow that will, so keep checking back.
Just because a company is not located in your immediate area doesn't mean you can't find a list of their available job openings. You can check the online employment websites by specific company in some cases, and/or you can Google the name of the company you're interested in to find a list of any job openings they may have. Example: Verizon employment opportunies, or Everybody's Favorite Burgers Tombstone AZ
If you just want to find work of a particular kind in a particular location, Google the location and jobs. For example: Miami FL Jobs
By searching online through the search engine of your choice, you are more likely to find a job to your liking that meets your requirements and your job skills without spending a lot of money blindly sending out resumés. Instead of shooting out a bunch of resumés without knowing if there is even an opening at a particular company, do a little research, which is usually pretty easy online, and then you can target your resumés and tailor them to the specific company and job.
If you don't have a computer, go to the library where they should have several available to the public.
As for recording your job search, it is no different than keeping a record of any other job search. List the name of the company, the address/phone number of the company, the name of anyone you have spoken to at that company, their phone extension if applicable, the date you talked to them, the result of the conversation, whether or not you applied for a job, the date you submitted your application, what job you applied for, how you applied for that job (mailed a resumé, applied online, applied in person, etc.), and the results of your effort if and when you receive any communication from the company you applied to.
If you have mailed an application or submitted an application online (many companies require online applications and that is another reason simply mailing an unsolicited resumé may be a waste of time), allow a couple of weeks to pass and then call their human resources department to see if it was received and whether or not the job is still open, etc. Feel free to call them every week or so after that unless they have given a definitive answer, or they have warned you not to call.
Some companies warn applicants not to call to inquire about their applications because it will jam their phone lines. They promise to put your application at the bottom of the heap if you do call, so try to determine their feelings about this before calling them.
Other companies gage your interest in a job by how many times you call to inquire about what stage your application may be in or how close they are to making a decision, etc. So you will need to do your best to determine how each perspective employer feels about calling.
I don't know what state you live in, but in Texas every time you contact an employer, every time you send a resumé or submit an application for employment, every time you search a companies website for new jobs (once a day is recommended) if they list them there, every time you interview with a company -- all these things count as one job search for unemployment benefits purposes. These rules may vary according to what state you live in so check with your local state unemployment office to be certain what their rules are to be sure.
Thank you for your inquiry Cecilia, and best wishes for finding your perfect job in the location of your choice. If you have any further questions feel free to post them here.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on October 22, 2013:
Thank you Moonlake, for pinning and sharing this article!
moonlake from America on October 20, 2013:
Came back to pin this on my Hub Board. Also to share with followers.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on October 03, 2013:
Mrs. H., thank you for stopping in and reading my article and mentioning the temp agency issue. Generally unemployment is a state issue and every state has their own rules and requirements which may differ to some extent in other states.
Here is a reference regarding the issue of counting every single contact with a temp agency as a job search in the state of Texas where I reside.
As you can see, in the state of Texas, every single contact with a temp agency regarding obtaining a job, from registering with them, through contacting them daily or weekly, or going on interviews set up by them, etc., does in fact count as a job search.
I also checked with the Wisconsin state employment service online and you are correct. In the state of Wisconsin you may count registering with an employment agency as a job search, but no further contacts with that agency will count towards the required number of job searches. It would seem that the state of Texas does more to encourage job seekers to do just that -- seek jobs. Below is the reference for this information: http://dwd.wisconsin.gov/dwd/forms/ui/PDF/ucb_12.p...
I never even suggested than a job interview doesn't count as a job search. Of course it does. The point is that lots of things besides interviews and applications count as job searches.
I appreciate your bringing my attention to the fact that not all state employment offices have the same requirements regarding job searches. I will place a note in my text to this affect so that people will be sure to contact their employment office or check online for specific information regarding what is accepted in their state as a job search and what is not.
Mrs.H on October 03, 2013:
Not all of your information is correct. You can't call a temp agency every week asking if there is work and count that as a job search. I spoke with Wisconsin unemployment about that. You can only count it once when you apply there.
Also going on a job interview does count as one for work search.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on August 29, 2013:
Thank you Deborah-Diane for sharing this article! The unemployment commission encourages people to find work through different kinds of job search activities that some people might not think count towards a job search. The reason these different activities are encouraged is because they work. :)
Deborah-Diane from Orange County, California on August 26, 2013:
I'm resharing this important information. People need to know how to correctly keep their unemployment benefits while they search for a new job.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on July 11, 2013:
Thank you WCHOSS for your inquiry. You seem to have a good grasp of English so I wonder why you would ask what I meant when I said to "check out" the job alerts sent to you by Texas WorkForce.
Once you are registered with Texas WorkForce, which includes creating a resumé, you will be matched to jobs that require the skills you say you have or that you say you have done in previous jobs. Those matches will be listed on the Texas WorkForce website and they will also be sent to you in email alerts from time to time if you have requested that, letting you know when any jobs are posted on their site that you may qualify for.
When you receive those alerts from Texas WorkForce in your email or on your account on the Texas WorkForce website, be sure to open them and read through them carefully. Apply for them as directed if they are something that interests you and that you do in fact qualify for. That is what "check them out" means. Examine the alerts and follow through with applying for those jobs that interest you and for which you are qualified.
When you receive email notices from private online job search sites, you need to keep a record of when you opened them (it should the same day or shortly after), and if any jobs listed interested you. Ideally you will find at least one, but hopefully more, and you can follow through and apply for those jobs. Keep a record of jobs you applied for as well as times when you found nothing useful.
Generally your word that you received and opened the job alerts from the private online job search sites will be accepted. However if you never list anything else, never list any jobs you actually applied for, you will probably be questioned as to whether you really did open and view the jobs list that was sent to you.
So if it is your plan to defraud the unemployment program by saying you received and opened the job lists sent to you daily by private online job search sites, and in fact you did not, or never made any effort to follow through on any jobs listed, you will very probably be found out and possibly even prosecuted for misrepresenting your job searches.
I would advise that you make a real effort to find another job and that you genuinely look at the jobs recommended and apply for as many of them as you are qualified for and that are within reasonable distance from where you live.
It is never a good idea to try to misrepresent your efforts to your state unemployment agency regarding your job search activities. If it is discovered you have done that, you could be prosecuted, fined, incarcerated, and very probably banned from being qualified to collect unemployment benefits for the foreseeable future. It isn't worth it, so don't even think about doing such a thing.
Nowadays finding another job isn't that easy for most people. Even making your best effort to find another job, which is what you should be doing, is likely to take a while. There are dozens of applicants for every job at this time, so if you don't make your best effort, you could very well find yourself unemployed even after your unemployment benefits have run out.
When people abuse unemployment insurance by misrepresenting their efforts to find work, they hurt the program and everyone who depends on that program from time to time. Unemployment benefits are intended to help people get through a difficult time from a job loss. They are not intended to provide a paid vacation. Lots of people already would like to see unemployment insurance done away with. Do not fuel their efforts by abusing the program and fraudulently collecting benefits.
WCHOSS on July 03, 2013:
Great info! I live in Texas and have just recently applied for unemployment. I was told to keep good records of my job search contacts and I was wondering how you would prove, for documentation purposes, that you went to an online job search site or opened an email notice sent to you from an online job search site. And could you clarify what you mean when you say "open every alert notice and check out the jobs listed on the alerts from the online job search sites"? What does "check out" mean? Do you really get credit for just opening an email or visiting a job search site?
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on June 09, 2013:
Thank you Peggy W for pinning and tweeting this hub!
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on June 04, 2013:
Going to pin this helpful hub and also tweet.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on March 21, 2013:
Thank you for commenting on this hub, Deborah-Diane! When the state unemployment office requests verification of your job searches, good records are essential. They've very helpful to a person searching for a new job too. Sometimes you may not get a call after submitting an application for several weeks and good records can help you remember important details about the job and the employer.
Deborah-Diane from Orange County, California on March 20, 2013:
I have never collected unemployment, but my husband needed to once. This Hub provides helpful information to the many people who need unemployment benefits.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on March 11, 2013:
Thank you for stopping by Shyron. Always appreciate your taking the time.
Shyron E Shenko from Texas on February 25, 2013:
This is a very interesting and useful hub, even for people who are not out of work.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on January 26, 2013:
Thank you Millionaire Tips for reading and commenting on this hub and for sharing your experience on this issue. I know just what you mean because I've had that experience myself. I, too, was surprised that just job searching counted, but that is what they call it, yes? Job searches. An agent of Texas Workforce clued me in to this and it turned out I'd been under reporting the number of job searches I had been making!
Shasta Matova from USA on January 25, 2013:
This is great information - when I was on unemployment, I wasn't really clear about what classified as a job search, and sometimes it was frustrating to not find any jobs that were worth applying for. I didn't realize just searching counted! Voted up.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on January 02, 2013:
Such high praise coming from a true connoisseur of women! Yes, and even giving me compliments for my good work! I feel truly blessed, Bobby!
Unfortunately a lot of people really do believe that being on unemployment means lazing around the house. That's a good way for a person to lose their benefits. Sorry pointing that out made you grumpy-wumpy.
Sorry too, that I wrote a hub not to your tastes, but it does compliment my most viewed hub about unemployment benefits. I'm hoping it will help people not so fortunate as yourself to make the hunt for a new job easier, and finding that new job quicker -- hopefully before their unemployment bennies run out.
Mr. O did manage to get a bill including higher taxes for the wealthy through Congress, but I think it should have been higher taxes for anyone who makes more than $75,000 a year, or any married couple who make more than $100,000 a year. Those who can should, especially when our country so desperately needs all the help it can get and certain people are doing all they can to obstruct anything positive from happening.
Hope you will have a healthful and prosperous New Year, Bobby! xx
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on January 01, 2013:
Brett.Tesol, thank you for reading, commenting, voting, and especially for tweeting, pinning, and sharing this hub! I appreciate that so much! I've been toying with the idea of getting a Pinterest account for a while now, and one of these days . . .
A lot more people have been laid off since just before Christmas, and it's unfortunate for sure. I hope this information will help them and make being unemployed less tedious and speed up finding a new job for them.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on January 01, 2013:
Keeley Shea, thank you for reading & commenting on this hub. I have already written a lot about unemployment benefits and I know that lots of people think the only thing that counts for a job search is an application or resumé submitted, but that just isn't true. I hope this hub will clarify job searches where the unemployment commission is concerned.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 31, 2012:
Esmeowl12, thank you for reading and commenting. You should file for unemployment benefits the very next day after being laid off. Waiting can mean losing benefits. Glad this hub was helpful.
You might want to check out my hub on Unemployment benefits and how they work. Have a great New Year!
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 30, 2012:
Thank you moonlake for reading and commenting on this hub, and especially for the share! Yes, it's unfortunate when one must take advantage of unemployment benefits but very helpful to have then available when needed. Anyone who has ever been there knows what I'm talking about. They're never anywhere near the amount of a paycheck, but they're better than nothing at all.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 29, 2012:
HoneyBB, thank you for reading and commenting on this hub. I hope you found lots of useful information in it. I'm about to publish another hub on keeping good job search records that will go into more detail and hopefully be helpful for job hunters personally, and for when the state unemployment office asks for job search verifications as they always do.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 29, 2012:
Thank you Peggy W, for commenting and especially for sharing this hub! I too hope this hub will be helpful to people on unemployment and those about to be on it. I wish there had been a clear explanation of exactly what was included in a job search for unemployment benefits purposes when I was collecting it.
diogenes from UK and Mexico on December 29, 2012:
I bet you could qualify as sex kitten! Would that count?
Don't chide me!
Well written hub, but the subject of no interest to me...I see Obama is trying to get the congress to agree on a bill for taxing the rich (Ha!)
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 28, 2012:
Diogenes, good to see you again! Glad you could stop by.
If you apply for a job as a CEO for any company it will only count if you are qualified for that position in the first place. I could apply to be a pilot for an airlines, but it would not count towards the required job searches I would be required to make if I were on unemployment because I am not qualified for that job.
Finding a new job when you're on unemployment is a job in itself and the unemployment office checks up on you regularly to make sure you're not just lying on the couch . . . ;) Thanks for stopping by!
Brett C from Asia on December 28, 2012:
Very useful advice and an extremely detailed hub, nice work! Unfortunately unemployment problems are growing, so this advice is likely to help many.
Shared, pinned, tweeted, up, and useful.
Keeley Shea from Norwich, CT on December 28, 2012:
This is a very thorough and detailed hub. Really well written and I will share with friends that I have heard ask the question of what they need to do to show that they were searching for a job when on unemployment. Great hub!
Cindy A Johnson from Sevierville, TN on December 28, 2012:
Thanks so much for this valuable info. I was just laid off and will begin applying for unemployment benefits very soon. I appreciate these tips.
H Lax on December 28, 2012:
This article gave me lots of ideas to aid in my job search as well as to have for my unemployment records. Thanks for sharing this excellent well covered information. Voted ++++
moonlake from America on December 28, 2012:
Lots of good information. We have had times when unemployment benefits were needed.
Voted up and shared.
C E Clark (author) from North Texas on December 28, 2012:
Thank you billybuc for taking time to comment on this hub! You are lucky indeed never to have needed to rely on unemployment benefits. With the current economy and no real improvement in sight, a lot of people are lucky to have unemployment benefits -- lots of people have nothing coming in, and as I'm sure you know, lot of people are homeless.
My hub on unemployment is my most popular hub, not necessarily with other hubbers, but with people who access it through Google. Since a lot of people aren't clear on what counts as a job search, I thought I would write a hub about that. I hope it will be helpful, as you say, to lots of people who unfortunately find themselves unemployed. Seems like the layoffs never end . . .
diogenes from UK and Mexico on December 28, 2012:
I will read hub later...I always thought it was lying on the sofa and phoning the Fortune 500 companies asking them if there were any vacancies as CEO!
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on December 27, 2012:
Hopefully this will help many people who are currently unemployed and who are seeking employment. Voted up, useful, interesting and will share.
Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on December 27, 2012:
I saw the title of this hub and that got me thinking, and I just realized that I have never received unemployment benefits. Forty-five years of work and never once had to use them. That is amazing luck if you ask me. :)
Good information! I'm sure this will be very helpful for many.
Happy New Year!