Here’s good news. The Labor Department’s employment report in December 2013 showed the job market is continuing to improve. Employers are gaining confidence about consumer demand, directly affecting job seekers. The jobless rate fell to 7% from a five-year low of 7.3% in October.

According to this report, there are 3.925 million jobs waiting to be filled (a 42,000 increase), the highest amount of unfilled jobs since May 2008.  It is predicted that these gains in the job market could drive wage growth and consumer spending.

What a lot of economists and job seekers are hoping to see is a self-propelled hiring cycle that is an outcome of better revenue and profits for businesses, and in turn generates additional hiring to meet demands. From January to November 2013, employers added approximately 188,600 workers, up from 179,500 for the same period in 2012, so we are starting to see the trend upwards.

From October 2012 to October 2013 the economy created 2 million jobs. However, almost 2.9 people are vying for every opening, up from about 1.8 when the last recession began in December 2007. The job openings that increased the most were professional and business services, construction, and manufacturing.

So with all this good news, what are you doing to maximize your success in job search?

  • Are you motivated to make a change in 2014?
  • Are you taking a fresh look at your job search strategies and goals for the New Year?
  • Are your career documents (resume, cover letter, professional bio, LinkedIn profile) up-to-date?
  • Are you actively networking?
  • Are you prepared to face obstacles that may stand in your way of getting another job?

If you need inspiration to get started, a great tool is to write yourself a letter from the future.  Yes, you read it correctly, write yourself a letter from the future. Starting your journey with the end in mind may be the vision you need to see a clearer path to your future.

In your letter, outline your successes, achievements, milestones, whatever is important to you for the next year. Set up S.M.A.R.T. goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-Oriented) that will be your stepping-stones to achieving success. And don’t forget to set aside time to work on these steps to your achieve your goals.

Make 2014 your best year yet!