Level 6, 11 – 31 York Street
Sydney NSW 2000 Australia
‘Standing out from the crowd’ when job hunting is a sentence filled with cliches but is the biggest roadblock for most job seekers.
The age-old question comes up time and time again – How do you stand out? How do I get ahead of other candidates? How can I make a memorable first impression?
In a surging market with a multitude of roles available, there is a lot of movement, and in turn, a lot of applications for these positions This means companies who are advertising are still having to wade through sizable piles of resumes so majority end up as ‘just another resume’.
To jump to the top of pile, you need to proactively ensure you stand out, normally via hard work, planning and research. To get you moving, here are five ways to approach the process and boost your chances:
Showcase Relevant Skills and Experience
How many people apply with generic resumes for jobs? Too many unfortunately, and it’s a sure-fire way to land yourself in the NO pile. It’s the first thing a hiring a manager will spot.
Job advertisements outline specific skills, characteristics and experience they want to find in a candidate – so it’s vital you tailor your resume and cover letter to talk to how your meet these criteria.
A significant component of standing out is updating your resume and cover letter to address the relevant skills and experience you have and how it applies or is transferrable to the specific role you apply for. Part of this is providing tangible top line examples or results to when you have used these skills or experience in a practical sense.
YES, it takes more time to research and tailor a resume for every application, but it will be noticed and importantly showcases energy and effort, in addition to you meeting the required criteria.
Also, don’t forget to be prepared to elaborate on these noted examples in an interview!
Social Media is a big part of building your professional brand – and LinkedIn is the most common platform to do this in Australia.
We highly recommend you have a profile, ensure its public and take the time to populate the content to both match your resume and reflect your skills & experience. It’s also worth including the profile link on your resume for quick reference. Make sure the image you select for your profile looks professional – don’t use a picture with friends or when you’re out partying.
It’s also standard practise now in Australia that recruiters and hiring managers will look at your profile during the hiring process, so ensure it’s there and up to date.
LinkedIn and professional platforms also provide you many opportunities with the most important being the ability to network. From connecting with recruiters, companies, staff members and industry contacts, it can open up doors and play a role in building your professional brand.
Research the Organisation
Another tip is to research key information about the organisation to help tailor your application. This sort of information may be found on their company website, annual report, in articles or news stories, or via the company or staff’s LinkedIn pages.
Where possible, weave in the knowledge to the cover letter – it could be anything from the hiring manager’s name, how your skills can help that company work towards the 10-year growth goal or by referencing the company’s mission or values and how you want to contribute to it.
Always Ask Questions
The opportunity to ask questions of your potential employer may come at the phone screening stage (if there is one) or at a formal interview. It’s imperative to be armed with tailored questions about the role, the business and even their culture.
Not only does it show you’re prepared and proactive but will again allow you to show your knowledge of the organisation based on your research.
Importantly, you also want to ensure this organisation is the right fit for you, so going in with a list of questions to uncover information should be a given!
To Go Above and Beyond – Preparation is Key
To get ahead, you need to put in the extra effort. It’s as simple as that.
A hiring manager will quickly recognise someone who has gone above and beyond with their resume, cover letter and or interview preparation making them stand out.
This will instantly set you apart from other candidates as it shows you’re willing to go the extra mile and work a bit harder for this company, which reflects your work ethic.
Tailored approaches, research, planning, strategic examples, and even mock interviews are all part of the process to get ahead – if you go into job seeking half-hearted, cut corners or take the lazy option, it will show.