Career advancement in a fast-paced changing world is fraught with challenges. `Standing out’ rather than `blending in’ is the key to creating a marketable profile for yourself.
Recruiters maintain that to have your CV stand out among the clutter, it must be a hard sell. In many ways, it is like a sales pitch, where you must catch the recruiter’s eye is probably less than 10 seconds.
On an average, every job posting receives around 250 applications of which only 25 CVs are sifted out to be seen by the hiring manager. Of these, only 4-6 get invited for an interview.Recruiters have very little time to spend on CVs and therefore ensuring that your qualifications and experiences are presented in an impactful way is crucial to increasing your chances to get into the next round.
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Creating a winnable CV:
Zero error CV: In the first stage, when recruiters are sifting through a maze of CVs, a single grammatical error is enough at this stage for the recruiter to dismiss the CV. Your covering letter and CV must be immaculate. Get to the point sooner on your skill sets and what you can bring to the table -don’t make the recruiter take an effort to read through your entire CV to figure out -because you can be mostly sure they won’t. Make your CV tech and key word friendly, these days CVs go through machines before it reaches the recruiter.
Importance of covering letter:
A covering letter sent along with the CV will help highlight the key aspects of your work experience or qualification relevant to the role applied for. A well-written covering letter could just be your gateway to landing that job. At times, the recruiter may make the decision merely on reading the covering letter itself and just skim through the CV for a quick confirmation.
Well-formatted CV: A visually pleasing resume in a format that is quick to open and read.
Relevance to the job:
There is a tendency among candidates to randomly apply for jobs without even checking if the job description maps on to what they are qualified to do.This may not be entirely the fault of the candidate as many employers tend to flood the job posting with a large list of qualifications that one person would be unlikely to possess.Make sure that you understand the actual duties and challenges of the job, and if you can make a significant contribution in the role, then go ahead and apply.
Use lateral thinking:
Lateral thinking is applying of different creative techniques to catch the recruiter’s attention. It could be through humor or impressing recruiter by sharing some piece of information which shows that you have gone the extra mile to research about the company. This immediately holds the recruiter’s interest.
In addition, once you zero in on the company that you are applying to, seek out an employee who knows you enough to refer you. If the company’s own employee recommends you, it makes your CV more credible and has greater weightage over the ones that come through regular routes.
Lastly and most importantly, every job seeker should endeavor to leverage multiple social media platforms. Your engagement on social media will help market yourself. Recruiters spend around 20% of their time viewing your social profiles to gather more information to supplement your CVs and to also assess your social leanings and network.
Remember that good old adage -first impression is the best one -still holds true in the first few critical steps of getting recruited. In a protean world, where jobs are scarce and individuals must take responsibility for creating their own career paths, constantly innovating your profile will give you the edge over the competition.