On the lookout for a new role? We asked Andrew Fennell, the founder of StandOut CV, for his tips on how to maximise your job hunting results…
When you’re applying for roles amongst thousands of other candidates, getting noticed by employers can feel impossible.
But the truth is, applying for advertised roles isn’t the only way to secure a new job – there are several other savvy job-hunting tricks you can use to attract a recruiters’ attention. Plus, they’re far simpler than you may have first expected!
Below are 6 little-known CV and job search tips that will seriously boost your chances of getting hired:
1. Identify your target
When it comes to your job search, quality should always come above quantity. Sending off hundreds of generic applications might be the quickest approach, but it definitely isn’t the best!
Instead, put forward a tailored application. Pinpoint your focus towards the job you’re applying for and note down all the skills, qualities and experience the employer is looking for.
Next, edit your CV to reflect your findings. Researching your chosen company’s goals, values and missions will also enable you to further showcase why you’re the ideal candidate. This process will leave you with a CV that is perfectly matched to the job!
2. Be ATS friendly
More employers than ever are using an ATS (Applicant Tracking System) to reduce time in the hiring process. This means that before you even have a chance to impress a human recruiter, you need to get past a computer-automated system.
These systems are designed to highlight the best and most relevant candidates, and they do this by focusing on a set of keywords. So, if you’re sending out generic CVs, you’ll be rejected at the first stage.
This further heightens the need to focus on the keywords and skills listed in each job advert and incorporate them into your CV. Don’t cram your CV with keywords, though – try to incorporate them as naturally as you can, with real-world examples.
3. Be Results Driven
Your CV is an opportunity to impress employers, so don’t just document your experience and skills. Make your value clear by making your results and achievements a focal point throughout your application.
Quantify each of your accomplishments by adding applicable facts and figures. Prove your value by detailing specific examples and giving hard facts.
For example, an administrator CV would be far more effective and believable if the candidate stated they “increased productivity by 20% by implementing a new filing system”, rather than just mentioning that they’re organised.
4. Pimp up your LinkedIn profile
Your LinkedIn profile is basically a public version of your CV, so it needs to be employer ready.
Employers are regularly searching LinkedIn for suitable candidates – and often use it to check up on applicants in the final stages of shortlisting. It’s vital to optimise your profile for the job hunt, ensuring it’s up to date and packed with your key selling points. You should also aim to present a strong first impression with a professional headshot and punchy summary.
For even more job-hunting impact, ask past or present colleagues to endorse your industry-specific skills, or politely ask your managers, customers and/or clients if they’d write a testimonial for you. If you offer to write one back, they’ll usually be willing – and it gives employers another perspective on your skills and experience!
5. Upload your CV
Applying for job adverts isn’t the only way to get a response from recruiters. Why not allow recruiters to come to you by having your CV available online?
Recruiters are searching through job boards daily, so by not having your CV uploaded, you might be missing out on a chance to interview for a role that isn’t otherwise advertised.
All the major job boards will now enable you to upload your CV, which ultimately gives you access to hundreds of recruiters – it’d be silly not to!
6. Send speculative applications
Just because a job isn’t advertised, it doesn’t mean that an employer isn’t looking for potential talent. When you’re searching for roles, consider compiling a list of top employers you’re interested in working for – and reach out to them!
Make your CV unique to that organisation and write a thoughtful cover letter, detailing the type of role you’re looking for and stating that you’d love to be considered if a suitable position comes up. Research the name of the company’s recruiter or HR personnel and address them by name, to give your submission a more personal touch.