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How long does it take to find a job?

There are many things that can go wrong or delay the job hunt process. Use our guide to find out how long it takes to find a job and speed up the process.

How long does it take to find a job?

When it comes to applying for a new job, we’d all like to think this is a smooth process that takes place seamlessly. In reality, finding a new job isn’t an overnight process. There are many complications and delays that can take place along the way.

Let’s walk you through a typical scenario to show you how long it can really take to find a job in the UK.

How long can a job search take?

The length of time it takes to find a new job varies from 3-6 months, although in some circumstances it can often be shorter or longer than this. The job search process depends on a number of factors including the type of position (seniority and rarity), the economic climate, and the company’s interview process among other things. 

Average length of a job search

Week 1 – gaining clarity and updating the CV

The moment you decide you want to find a new job isn’t the moment you start applying. Once you make the decision, you’ll need time to think about your next step and which direction you want to take your career. It’s good to have this period of reflection. Once you’ve decided on the direction, you’ll also need time to update your CV to incorporate your latest work experience and tailor it to the types of jobs you’ll be applying for.

Weeks 2-4 – applying for jobs

You’re likely to spend at least a couple of weeks applying for different jobs before hearing back. Applying for jobs can be a time-consuming task in itself. It’s not something that takes place in a single evening. Depending on the type of job you’re looking for will impact how many job applications you should send per day. Often you’ll need to send out numerous applications each day to keep the ball rolling.

Weeks 4-6 – arranging the telephone interview

By week 5 of your job search, you could start hearing back from some of the companies to arrange the first phase of the interview process. Different companies have different ways of structuring the hiring process. They may invite you to carry out an online assessment, or it may be a telephone interview or even a face-to-face interview. But for this example, let’s assume it’s a telephone interview. Either way, there’s likely going to be a 1-2 week waiting period to find a suitable date.

Weeks 6-7 – the face-to-face

During weeks 6-7, you’ll be waiting for feedback from your first interview, and you may also experience a delay if the company has other candidates to interview first. Following the feedback from the telephone interview, you’ll (hopefully) arrange a date for the next stage of the interview process: a face-to-face interview.

Weeks 8-10 – the final stage

Things are hotting up in weeks 8-10. This could potentially be the final stage of the interview process with a second face-to-face interview. Again, you’ll be waiting for feedback from the previous interview, and then you’ll need to allow time to arrange the next stage. 

Weeks 10-11 – waiting for the final decision

Once the final stage of the interview is complete, you just have to wait for the other candidates to complete any other interviews and for the hiring team to meet up and discuss who they’d like to hire. 

What are the quickest jobs you can get?

There are some jobs that will have a much quicker interview process. This tends to be jobs where there is a high demand for staff or where there is usually a high turnover of staff.

  • Care work
  • Warehousing
  • Drivers
  • Hospitality (waiters / waitresses)
  • Sales
  • Manual labour

How to speed up the job hunt process

  • Ensure your CV is of a high standard
  • Apply for several jobs daily
  • Take advantage of the auto-apply and 1 tap apply features on the SonicJobs app
  • Set job alerts
  • Follow up on every application after a week

Patience and persistence

Although you’re keen to land a new job as soon as possible, remember that it takes time. If you’re going to succeed in your job hunt, you need to remain patient to the fact that it could take 6 months, but also keep in mind it will be worth it in the end when you find your ideal role.

Looking for the quickest way to land a new role? Hop onto the SonicJobs app for a speedy way to find jobs!



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