Take a look at your resume, is everything in place? You have the education, the requisite skills, and have detailed your job history and outlined the pertinent duties for your search. On the outset it appears you have a polished vitae guaranteed to wow any personnel director or recruiter, but take a closer look. Does it seem like something is missing from your list of accomplishments?

If you have not devoted any time to volunteer work in your community, you may wish to consider looking into what is available for you. While volunteer work doesn’t pay monetarily, the benefits you stand to receive may come to yield a steady paycheck.

You might ask, “Why should I devote time to volunteering somewhere when I need to find a job?” Think on this: it is not uncommon for a major company to offer manpower and other services to neighborhood non-profit organizations in order to foster a sense of community. The next time you attend a town festival or charity event, take note of the sponsors – local businesses dedicated not only to succeeding, but helping those around them thrive. Volunteering for a local shelter, service group, or church may put you in touch with valuable business contacts, which can lead to future employment.

It’s no secret, either, that HR and staffing directors look at volunteer work when screening candidates. Your efforts not only display a strong drive to do good, but it let employers know you have a generous nature and a willingness to foster positive relations in the community.

As you move forward with your job search, budget time to explore volunteer opportunities that match your skills. Volunteerism could mean a few hours a week answering phones or handling correspondence, light manual labor, or even assisting an organization with its website. The time you put in is as valuable to the community as it is to your future.

Kathryn Lively is a freelance writer specializing in articles on Virginia Beach jobs and Virginia Beach condos.