When it’s down to the wire and you’re competing with the best, how do you give yourself that edge in job searching? Studies indicate there some new key insight to bear in mind while you search, apply and land your next dream job. Whether it’s a transitional job or a lasting career follow this advice to ensure relevance and credibility in today’s job market.
You’re strongest in the areas you have already mastered. It certainly doesn’t mean you can’t branch out into new waters but it the best advice centers around starting with your strongest skills first. If you’ve spent two years in an office as an administrator and now want to move into Computer Automation, don’t let your limited current skill set stop you – just lead with your strengths and focus in on areas you’re already strong. Simply searching for all jobs in ‘Austin’ will have your head spinning and your options narrower.
Craft Your Message Carefully
The average recruiter spends six seconds reviewing your cover letter and resume. That’s all the time you have to land yourself in the ‘maybe’ pile and possibly be contacted further. With these time frames in mind you really need to differentiate yourself in ways your co-applicants haven’t and that often comes down to formatting and style of your resume. A well appointed resume and cover letter can say almost as much as positive body language and great conversational skills combined. Use templates like these to polish your message and save yourself some time.
Studies show that the person who is referred by an employee is hired five times more often than the stranger who simply applies. So, focus that networking on your target employers and splurge for a premium Linkedin account. Former colleges and bosses that you have previously worked with will server as an excellent recommendation. Are they hiring? Is anyone in their network hiring? Ask!
Polish Up Those Interview Skills
Bring your ‘A’ game to interviews and expect to be asked ‘So what do you know about us?’ Come prepared with several printed copies of your resume and cover letters – at least one for ever interviewee and one for yourself too. Bring a pen, notepad and calculator as well since you never know what could be headed your way. The added preparation can also serve as a confidence booster and often comes across in interviews. Ensure that you account for gaps in your experience, and be prepared to discuss reasons for leaving jobs. You want to remain honest and as professional as possible.
And do it now! You never know who can see that night out in Vegas you had four years ago. Having a presence on social media is absolutely essential for many industries these days which really just accounts for relevance. Being online says more about how current you are with you knowledge and skills than it does anything else. Join Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram but ensure you maintain a level of professionalism. You want to give the reciter a glimpse into who you are and what your values are.