Seeking another job almost always demands time, effort and perseverance. But it seems that candidates are in favour of keeping their options open until they find the right role, after a new report from recruiter Advanced Resource Managers (ARM) found that more than four out of ten job-hunters apply for five or more roles in their typical job hunt.

Fewer than an eighth of candidates who responded to the survey had only applied for a single job, indicating that for most job-hunters it is better to spread their bets. In a competitive job market where success does not necessarily happen overnight, it makes sense that jobseekers are not all placing all of their hopes on a single vacancy.

Many are seeking advice and guidance through the process of finding and applying for roles, with 38 per cent saying that recruitment agencies were the best way for them to find jobs. Just under three out of ten said they preferred to look for vacancies themselves via job boards.

Interestingly, for all the press attention given to LinkedIn and Twitter as a means of finding jobs, social media are still not widely used in some sections of the labour market. In fact, 12 per cent of job-hunters said this was the best way for them to find work, slightly fewer than said they would go directly to employers to hear about vacancies.

But it is clear that the traditional image of the jobseeker poring over the small ads in newspapers and magazines is fading fast – fewer than one in ten said that they now find opportunities through these media.

Unsurprisingly, the top priority for respondents was the actual type of work they would be doing – its relevance to their industry and skills, for example. Yet there were plenty of reasons people sought new roles that were not just about the jobs themselves.

Some 23 per cent said that a short commute was paramount for them, while 21 per cent said that pay and benefits were the most significant factors that influences their job search. It appears that many candidates are unwilling to trade distance for higher pay.