To many, the aim in job hunting is to get the job, for us the key is getting an interview! Here are some tips on how to get in front of the interviewers, so you can get that job.
1. Phone the interviewer
You really do need to stand out from the crowd, and one way to do this is right at the very start of the process. Many candidates simply email their CV (CV=Resume), or apply on line. These days the 'screening' process is often done by scanning into a software package, as opposed to a 'human'. So let's think about ways of making you stand out. As a recruiter I would definitely look out for your CV if I'd spoken to you in advance, or been made aware of your application.
Out of 100 candidates, I wonder how many will phone? Zero, 1? To stand out you must call!! So what to say then? Here are some suggestions of things to discuss/ask the interviewer:
i) Pick a key responsibility from the job advert to discuss, eg 'I have experience in ...., I just wanted to ensure that you were looking for someone that had ...'
ii) 'Is it possible to speak to someone that currently holds the role'
iii) I just wanted to check something from the job description, (pick a neutral topic to discuss, eg location, qualification etc)
2. Remember you are recruiting them, as much as they are recruiting you!
You could end up with this job for a number of years, so make sure the role is right for you. Research the company, call or drop by to speak to someone in the role at this moment. (NB Remember to drop this in when you speak to the interviewer). Find out what the company and role is all about, so you can choose whether this is really the right next career step.
3. Tailor your CV/Resume
By tailoring your CV we mean highlight significant achievements, which match the specific role you are applying for. Drop in similar words, for example, if the role is looking for looking for business to business experience, make sure if you have that experience that your CV mentions it. By the way, we do not mean copy and paste the exact same words from the job description here, you will need to be creative! how to write a CV tips for candidates
4. Tailor your covering letter
A key way to get an interview is to ensure your covering letter explains your experience, relevant to the specific role you are applying for. So here highlight key achievements, that match the recruiters requirements. For example, 'This year I have worked as project lead on a customer experience pilot which increased our Net Promoter Score by x%' would match someone looking for Experienced in customer service initiatives. This may sound obvious, but remember it may be a computer, not a human reading the CV, so remember to promote your achievement, so there is no doubt on what you can do. It's surprising how many people send in a 'bog standard' covering letter.
5. Sell yourself, don't assume
It may seem blatantly obvious again, but you will surprised how many assumptions people make in writing CV's and covering letters. The recruiter cannot read your mind, or make assumptions that because you have been a manager that you have completed certain tasks. You need to spell out what you have achieved, in terms of size, scale, scope. Let's demonstrate:
A - I am a manager working for ABC Company, specialising in fabrication of widgets.
B - Responsible for leading a team of 12, in the manufacturing of widgets. Key responsibilities are to ensure the quality.......Coaching and performance management of the team..., Accountable for weekly management report presented to the senior management team....,Managing budget of £X etc etc.....; Key achievements. Lead team to increase productivity and cost reduction, beating targets set. Nominated for Manager of the year by my peers. etc etc*
I am sure you can clearly see that candidate B will get the interview, but the shy, bashful candidate A will not. The truth though is that candidate A and B are the same person! Remember no one will sell you, you have to sell yourself. This can be done without compromising your values, but the fact of the matter is as they say in the North of England "Shy bairns get nowt!"
Once you have got that interview, here are some preparing for interview tips
*do not abbreviate, use ....... or use etc, etc, this is for demo purposes only!!