How to Make Yourself Stand Out As a Jobseeker
As the employment market is fairly challenging and it seems a little harder to grab the attention of a prospective employer these days, we review some clever ways to make yourself stand out as a jobseeker.
Get it right on paper first
It doesn’t matter what position you are applying for, make sure you apply for all jobs with a tailored and well written professionally presented resume and cover letter to demonstrate to your prospective employer that you are a worthy and serious job applicant. Submitting both documents together also ensure that your employer knows exactly which or what kind of position you are applying for directly. Make sure that you also carefully follow any application guidelines and if you are not sure of any requirements, ring the employer or recruiter directly and clarify everything. Also be wary of any application due dates and times and always plan to ensure that have adequate time to prepare your employment documents.
Practice before your interview
Before you attend any interview, make sure that you are well prepared. Always anticipate key questions which your employer may ask you and prepare possible responses and work examples which relate directly to the job you are applying for. Popular questions which you can expect early in any interview include:
- Tell us about yourself.
- What are your major career goals?
- Why did you leave your last job?
- Why do you want this job?
- What are your strengths?
- What are your weaknesses?
- What are your achievements?
- Why should we hire you for this job?
Overall, the best policy when answering such questions is to be honest and to be relaxed at all times. The more you relax, the more your employer will feel comfortable around you. Additionally make sure that your responses are clear, thoughtful and demonstrate that you are genuinely interested in working for the actual company you have applied for.
Know your employer inside and out
It would be well worth your time to really check out and do your research on your employer. Using the company’s corporate website and/or utilising any internal contacts you may have, find out and commit to memory the following information:
- What services and products the company offers
- Who are their key customers
- What are the values of the company and their employers
- Why the company exists and any key achievements
- What good things the company offers to employees
- What good things the company does in the community
- What career paths are available to employees
By knowing these elements you can then present relevant questions to your employer at appropriate times to demonstrate that you have taken an interest and are familiar with the company.
Another strategy in making yourself stand out as a jobseeker is to work your network. Many first-time or inexperienced job seekers want to get a job on their own to prove that they can do it themselves. However the best way to beat the competitive job market is to go out and do some networking and make yourself known. Courteously find out from family, friends, business contacts, existing employees and alumni from your university whether they have any direct contacts or know of any positions available and ask for any key names, titles, phone numbers and email addresses. Also consider going to any industry related meetings or events to find your way directly to employers. Also consider asking your contacts to make recommendations for you as your application will look a lot better when it comes along with a personal recommendation than it does by itself.
Develop a personal pitch
During any stage of the recruitment process you will be required to pitch your strengths. Therefore start thinking right now – what do you excel at and what key areas do you pride yourself on. Your strengths may relate to your abilities to complete certain tasks or they may relate to your personality and ability to relate to others. Therefore consider what strengths would be relevant to the jobs you are applying for. Next focus all of your written and verbal communications on just 3 key elements. Mention them in your cover letter, resume and during your interview. The more effectively you stay on message, the better your chances of landing that job.
Overall, as knowledge is power, make sure you know yourself, your employer and the company you are applying for you and this will indefinitely help you to make yourself stand out as a jobseeker.