We all know the economy is tough, meaning job hunting is even tougher. Though it is easy to just follow the simple path for job searching, as you may have always done in the past, it’s time to differentiate yourself. If you are on the prowl for a new job, use these tips to stand out from the rest of the pack!
Make Your Resume Streamlined
Recruiters do not want to read long, wordy resumes… in fact, very few actually read the whole thing, they skim it…so make sure the important pieces of data stand out to their browsing eyes! Be concise on your resume, especially in work history. Find simple ways to state accomplishments and use numbers to your quantify your achievements where possible. Some organizations use an applicant tracking software for finding applicants, and so recruiters at these companies may be looking through a large volume of electronic resumes attached to applicant records in the ATS. As a result, it is advantageous to the job seeker to upload a more concise resume in this scenario, as well. As an added bonus, include a link to your up-to-date LinkedIn page on your resume. If the recruiter is interested in knowing more about you, he/she can then go to your page and see more job details, references and organizations with which you are involved. (NOTE: As I mentioned, this only works if you keep your LinkedIn profile updated!)
Be Prepared for the Interview Process
And, I don’t mean that you should practice answering questions like “what are your strengths and weaknesses?” You need to have something prepared to present to the interviewer to make sure you are remembered in a positive light. This could be a portfolio of your past work if you are in advertising, or blogs you have written about your past job experiences, or even a presentation about why you are the best person for the job. Do your research about the company and find out what makes you the best fit for the job and the company’s culture. This will leave a lasting impression, as it will be evident that you have spent time learning about the business and what makes the organization attractive to you.
Creativity is Essential, Especially in Follow Up
In this day where everything is technology driven, do something special to follow up with your interview…. A hand written note! I know it sounds old fashioned, but write one and send it immediately after your interview. Hiring managers get 100’s of emails every day – imagine if the subject line says “Thank you” they probably barely read it and immediately forget who sent it. You will stand out in their minds when your name is on a handwritten note. If you know that the hiring process is going to take several weeks or even months, follow up after the handwritten note with a phone call. This will let them know you are seriously interested in their company and the job.
Making sure you stand out amidst the crowd of applicants and resumes is easier than you think. One warning though, make sure not to stand out in a negative way.