Finding a job continues to get more and more difficult as a number of qualified candidates flood the market, all vying for the same few jobs. The professional sphere is insanely competitive, which means that it has become even more important for candidates to find ways to set themselves apart from their competitors. Making yourself stand out from the crowd can feel challenging at times, especially when all the other candidates are as qualified and experienced as you, but it doesn’t have to be. Read on to learn more.
The saying fake it until you make it certainly does hold some merit. Being confident whilst job seeking can be difficult. Especially if you let doubt feed you mind about other candidates being better suited for the roles or in some cases, if you’ve had a few knock backs which is all perfectly normal. It is important to ensure that, despite our own personal feelings, you put your best self forward when you are job seeking. Often people are hired on their ability to ‘network’ per se. The easiest way to do this is ensuring that you are confident. Practise certain elements before hand and try to perfect them, this includes offering a firm handshake. Think of some standardised interview questions that may be on the horizon and what your bullet pointed answers would be. You’ll want to avoid creating a direct script as that cane sometimes lead to you sounding robotic. Being confident in yourself and in your abilities is certainly a fool-proof way to becoming the best candidate.
Ensure That You Are the Most Qualified
Most people tend to apply for a job that they are directly qualified for; of course, there are instances when you might apply for a job that you are tangentially or almost qualified for. Therefore, ensuring that you are the most qualified candidate for the position can be tricky, as all other candidates will have similar qualifications and experience as you. A lot of businesses will also offer on-the-job training in one form or another – in fact, online training, like the courses available from iHASCO, is one of the most popular ways for an employer to educate their workforce. Why not pre-empt this and shore up your application with additional qualifications or learning?
Build a Stellar CV
Before you even apply for the job, you need to ensure that your CV is tip-top. While you are often given the chance to elaborate during the application itself, a lot of recruiters will use your CV -and cover letter if you have submitted one – to learn more about you. Your CV needs to be well-written and formatted correctly. However, most importantly, while it is a professional document, you should also do your best to showcase your personality too. There are a huge number of templates available on the internet which can help to ensure that you have hit every element needed in your CV, as well as create more visual interest to help it to stand out.
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You’ll want to consider tailoring aspects of your CV to certain roles that definitely need that extra push. A good place to make those custom changes may be in your CV summary section where you can alter the paragraph slightly depending on the role you’re aiming to go for. Think of facts and figures from previous experiences that will appeal.
Consider Your Social Media Presence
A lot of recruiters today will take your name from your application and look you up on social media sites. There are several social media sites dedicated to working professionals, like LinkedIn, that they are likely to check, and for the most part, your presence on there is likely to be professional. Ensure that your LinkedIn account is up to date with your education listed and any previous experiences. You can also ask previous contacts to leave reviews and share a fair bit. For example, if you are looking to join the marketing industry you can post case studies of your work or showcase your ideal social media plans for potential clients. This way if a recruiter is looking you up, they might feel assured that you are the right fit for the role. Double benefit to this is that you’re building your own personal brand which is invaluable whilst working on securing a new job opportunity.
Beyond the space of professional social media sites recruiters may also choose to look up your personal accounts, and what they find can impact whether you are offered the job or not. We’ve all heard of countless celebrities or influencers having old Tweets resurface that catch up with them. You can mitigate this by making your accounts private and limiting what strangers can see. It is also worth cleaning up all elements of your social media account and potentially getting rid of those photos from College or University that may not look as appealing to a recruiter. You could also choose to use social media; why not list your accounts on your CV and use your social media presence to display examples of your work – this obviously won’t work for all forms of jobs. Still, for creative industries, this is a great way to create a portfolio of your work.
Confidence is important; you need to believe that you are the best candidate. Although it is worth pointing out that there is a line between confidence and arrogance, it is important that you are on the right side of that line. Giving yourself a competitive edge is necessary for today’s job market. Remember, if you don’t get the job, it isn’t the end of the world; collect yourself and try again.
Working on the above together means that if the first job isn’t the right fit. You’ll definitely be more prepared for the second or third. Experience is key in the industry and getting yourself comfortable in uncomfortable settings is what will allow you to grow in the long run.