If you’ve been blaming the depressed economy for your lack of job search success, maybe it’s your strategy that needs a boost. Amit De, CEO and co-founder of CareerLeaf, suggests it might be time to take you game to a higher level. Here are six areas that he says are essential to be a top contender in the job market.
Attitude: Much of your job search is related to composure and attitude. While the process can be frustrating, degrading and many other adjectives, stay positive. Your attitude will be reflected in applications, emails, online presence and, most importantly, the interview. Remain confident no matter what it takes.
Social Media Presence: More and more employers are scanning social media profiles as a standard part of their applicant screening process, so your image on social media could make or break your chances for an interview or job offer. You should establish a professional profile on at least one of the major sites, like LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter, and make sure it is sparkly clean. Google your name to find out what others will see. Check your Facebook privacy settings and have friends un-tag you from any photos that might compromise your candidacy for employment.
Job Boards: The lure of major job boards can derail your job search, wasting time and energy. The high traffic to those site means your resume will compete with thousands of others and probably wind up in a tower-sized stack of never-seen applications. Niche job boards within your industry have fewer candidates and increase your chances of interacting with hiring managers, who are more likely to provide contact information on industry-specific sites.
Network: Turn your job search around by creating a network of cooperative professional connections. Networking does not mean asking somebody to find you a job; it’s about building mutually beneficial relationships in which you can learn more about companies, positions, industries, and even your own career path.
Resume: Hiring managers might take only a few seconds to review your resume before deciding which pile it goes in. Too much text, poor formatting, inappropriate content, and grammatical and spelling errors are common reasons recruiters toss resumes into the recycling bin. Create a professional resume that showcases you in a concise, easy-to-read format.
Advice: Asking for job-search and industry-related advice is not only acceptable, it’s necessary. Utilize your networking connections to develop relationships with mentors. Ask questions and learn from their experience.