To start with, you will agree with us that the way firms hire now is different from the way of the past. They have evolved from looking for generic skills and qualifications to searching for the right candidate that will bring value to the team, meaning you must stand out in your job search.
That is why you also must go from being just qualified to being able to demonstrate to hiring managers that you are qualified.
Let’s face the truth. Even if you are the best person for the job, but can’t show this well enough, the job will go to someone less qualified than you are. The difference, you ask? They did their homework which placed them above all others.
Before you reach out to apply for that next job, look at these nuggets on how to stand out in your job search.
Before the Interview
1 Use Referrals
If you want to make the hiring manager notice your application, make sure you have quality referrals. If you know someone that’s able to get you talk time with the hiring manager of the firm, work them towards that effect.
Getting a referral doesn’t automatically give you the job, but you now have a foot in the door.
2 Update your LinkedIn
LinkedIn has proven to be a top haven for hiring managers. That being said, you are doing your career growth a great harm if your LinkedIn is not optimized to show you as a top performer.
What you want to do is research the keywords that are specific to your industry, then sprinkle them in your profile. Of course, make sure you have a solid portfolio to back up your profile.
To get the most out of your LinkedIn experience, you should look at one of our resources on the subject
3 Get Recommendations
Either online or offline, ask a few key people to write quality recommendations for you. If you have a good relationship with them, tell them what you want your recommendations from them to reflect.
You shouldn’t be telling them to write something false as that would be unprofessional. Rather, let them know the areas where you want them to focus.
4 Use a ‘Pain’ Letter
Hiring managers get a ton of cover letters with the same templates. If you want to stand out, according to Liz Ryan, be ready to write a pain letter. Instead of the conventional cover letter, identify a challenge of the company, and write out how you can help them overcome such with your position.
During the Interview
5 Research the Company
Hiring managers expect you to have done some research, but it is to at what extent that they care most.
Instead of going for the company’s name and line of products, research into why they feel the need to hire you. Relate your position to a problem they are having and be prepared to let them know you’re already in sync with them
6 Relate Your Skills
Before you tell the hiring manager that you have a Masters or Doctorate degree in your field, pause and think how many other applicants have used that same line. Lots, right? So, take a mild diversion.
Instead of just throwing your skills and qualifications in their face, let them know how it relates to the position you’re applying for. Don’t be another liability on their hands. Be an asset they can’t refuse!
After the Interview
7 Send a Thank-You Message
In most cases, you won’t be the only one called for an interview, but you might just be the only one that thanks the hiring managers for their time. On the off chance that you are still not the only one in that category, do it differently.
Instead of sending a generic mail, use video to stand out. The thing with a video message is that you can connect emotionally with the recruiter, and make a better, lasting impression.
We have one last tip, and we’re adding it for free. It’s this – Start doing, NOW!