Job hunting has become very competitive lately with a myriad of candidates with skills never imagined in yesteryears. Employers too are becoming increasingly demanding in their search for the “best” talents in the job market. This leaves job-seekers or job-hunters no other option but to become more savvy or “job-smart” as in street-smart when searching for career opportunities.
· Update your resume
The foremost priority of all job-seekers would be to have an updated resume with the latest information, especially remuneration details. Set aside at least 15 minutes a day to update your resume and scan job-sites or the traditional print media for suitable openings. Opportunities can fly by in an instant!
· Build a network
All the hype about social media and professional networking is just that – in today’s business world where everybody and everything has gone online, it is also highly necessary for job-seekers to create a prominent presence online. Search consultants often use LinkedIn profiles to reach out to candidates and make the right connection. So, create an appealing LinkedIn profile and market yourself online.
· Background check on the company
As much as organisations see the importance of checking on the background of a potential candidate, it is also highly necessary for the candidate to check-out the background of the company, in terms of, financial stability, working culture and benefits. How do you do this? By talking to friends and scouring the internet for information.
· At the interview
Prepare yourself for the interview. Read through the job scope advertised and anticipate questions that the interviewer might ask you during the interview session. Prepare answers and practice them. Practice introducing yourself and explaining your current job scope as well as your experiences in the job market, if any. Be honest! Potential employers hate surprises or even cover-up excuses when they stumble upon a discrepancy.
· Dressing for the interview
As much as Hollywood publicises seductive or alluring behaviour to get that dream job, stay clear of these sleazy tactics and always remain professional. Hope to get the job based on merit, professionalism and suitability – only then it will work out for you nicely. Dress in warm colours for corporate positions and add more cheery colours for jobs in advertising, entertainment or the leisure industry. Colourful shirts or fluorescent blouses are a definite no-no for the normal everyday interview session, unless of course you will be meeting up with Britney Spears or Christina Aguilera.
As much as you do not want to appear as a pest or nagger, it is important for a candidate to send a follow-up message to an interviewer seeking for a status update. This will enable the candidate to stand out from the rest of the competition. Interviewers and potential employers welcome a candidate that has initiative and is proactive about even little things such as this.
Job hunting can be exciting yet tiring but always keep an open mind with positive thoughts. If one interview does not work out, look out for another one. The sea is full of fish, you are sure to net one sooner or later.
by Christina Thomas
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