When you are searching for a new job, it can be easy to get lost in the latest and greatest job search tips and tricks. But it is only the basics that will get you past the first round of an application. Don’t forget the importance of your resume, your cover letter, your application, and how you show up as a qualified professional. This post will go back to basics and address the obvious job search tips that many seekers tend to forget, but which you should hold close to your chest for a winning job search strategy.
Tip #1. Make Yourself the Obvious Choice
When a hiring manager is reviewing hundreds of resumes, you can be sure they are quick to throw out any who don’t fit the bill right from the start. It might be obvious to you that you would be capable of meeting the needs of a role, but that doesn’t matter in the end. You need to convince the manager (or more likely, the applicant tracking system) on the other side of your resume that you are the obvious choice for the role. This is based on keywords that you will find written into the job description that you are hiring for. If you are not clearly stating the skills and experience that are required, you might as well be throwing your resume out yourself. Make sure you are studying the job description and any available information you have on the position, then write your resume specifically to fit that job.
Tip #2. Think Outside of the Box (the computer box that is)
When applying for new roles, of course you’ll want to spend a good deal of time filling out online applications during your job search. These online databases are a powerful tool for employers to find and weed out the qualified candidates for their open positions. But to really make a personal impression, don’t limit yourself to just online applications. To do so is doing yourself quite a disservice. If you really want to get your foot in the door, you need to get out and do it in person. Schedule informational interviews with would-be peers. Approach an internal recruiter and learn a thing or two. Find out who the people you need to connect with would be, then get out there and do some networking.
Tip #3. Every Job Opportunity Requires a Fresh Perspective
Similar to Tip #1 above, Tip #3 is all about being flexible. You need to be continuously updating your resume (and your LinkedIn profile) to stay relevant to each job you are applying to. While there are ways to make each a good general recommendation for the variety of jobs you are interested in, it’s much more powerful to make them a custom fit for those jobs that you think will be the next best step in your career path.
Tip #4. Don’t Be Boring
Boring people don’t get hired. They get overlooked. Try to find what it is that differentiates you as a person, and incorporate that into your professional branding. The things that make you most memorable are the things that will make you the most hirable.
Tip #5. LinkedIn Matters
Whatever you may think about social and professional networking online, the fact is that recruiters (and even managers) will be looking you up and developing an opinion of you based on your profile, whether you like it or not. With that in mind, make sure they are seeing what you want them to see and that you are presenting yourself in your best, professional light.
Tip #6. Thank You Matters Too
There are few things more powerful than a handwritten and thoughtful thank you note. By putting in that little extra effort, you show that you are committed to the role in ways that others probably are not. Make your thank you and your follow up just as impressive as your application and you’ll be sure to shine.
Ready for new opportunities?