It's no secret that in recent months there has been a surge in job seekers to the market. There are now large numbers of highly skilled and qualified candidates applying for roles across almost all sectors. What does this mean for job seekers?
The obvious one is that there is more competition. The market has now become more employer-driven, meaning that employers are in the position to be more selective. It also means that there is generally very little in the deciding factors between candidates as many will have similar work experience and education.
So how can you set yourself apart from other job applicants?
To help you get noticed and stand out in your sector, I've compiled a list of my top tips for job seekers of all levels.
1. Utilise your LinkedIn profile
LinkedIn is an extraordinary platform for jobseekers to gain insight into a business and connect with other professionals.
Long gone are the days of the company director being hidden away in the top floor office. Now you can learn about your peer's careers with just a simple request.
When applying for jobs, a great way to stand out is to connect with industry professionals. Engage with others on posts through comments and likes and take part in discussions on topics relevant to your industry. Remember to always try and add value and share your own insights via posts too.
By doing this you'll be able to connect with new people and broaden your opportunities. You can find lots of other great ways to attract recruiters via LinkedIn in this blog.
2. Customise your CV & cover letter for each job you apply for
A red flag for a recruiter is receiving an application for a store manager role and the first line of the CV reads “I’m interested in applying for the role of Accounts Executive”.
This straight away shows a lack of interest and lack of attention to detail. While you may have great experience to back up your CV the opening statement is very important.
I would recommend that all job seekers include a bio on their CV, and customise this for each role they apply for. This is a great way to pick out key skills in the job description and highlight them on your CV to show how relevant your experience is.
3. Be specific and selective about what you want
Employers are interested in hiring candidates who are genuinely passionate about the company or the role they are applying for.
Rather than filling out every job application you see, narrow down your search to the roles that are most relevant to your skills and experience.
Think about what industry you are most interested in and what job function you excel at. Through doing this you will focus your attention and send out fewer applications but your response rate will increase.
4. Find your unique selling point
What are you passionate about? What can you do better than anyone else you know? What is a struggle you’ve overcome and what did it teach you?
Many job seekers are afraid to market themselves and as a result, end up blending in with everyone else. Some great ways to stand out are to work on a personal project, take part in volunteer work in your field of interest, write blogs or make videos.
Again, LinkedIn is a great platform to share your content and work. Doing this shows prospective employers what you can bring to the table before you even get to a job interview.
5. Work with a recruiter
Working with a recruiter is a great way to stand out in the market. Recruiters can help you refine your search and present you with the most relevant opportunities. They can also help you update your CV, prepare for job interviews and educate you on specific market insights.
Recruiters have strong relationships with hiring managers and can get your CV in front of the right person rather than getting lost in an inbox of applications.
The job market is tough at the moment and there is a lot of competition, but if you market yourself in the right way, ensure your CV has the right information on it you will find opportunities.