If you’ve conducted a job search before, you already know what to expect: lots of applications, forms, resume writing, and cover letters. Even if you’re incredibly qualified for a job, there’s no guarantee that you’ll get a response—let alone an interview. So if you want more callbacks for interviews, you’ll need to showcase your skills, demonstrate why you’re the right fit for the job, and impress employers with your cover letter and resume. Here are a few steps you can take to ensure your next job search is a successful one.
Showcase Your Experience In Your Resume Many job applicants fail to impress hiring managers because they’re writing a resume that’s too rigid. These candidates find a simple template online, and then copy the structure like a Xerox machine as they fill in their own resume with information about themselves.
Unfortunately, having an identical resume to everyone else is an easy way to have your application go ignored—not to mention, completely forgotten. Your resume should be concise, informative, and unique, and it has to highlight your best individual skills and experiences. Also, your resume shouldn’t drag on for multiple pages (unless you’re applying to a senior or C-level position). Even if you’re incredibly proud of your previous achievements, you should almost always try to condense this information into one page. Use concise language and don’t waffle on about what you did at each job. Only mention your best achievements instead of listing them all, and don’t highlight previous jobs that are irrelevant to the job you’re applying for. Remember that your resume isn’t just an advertisement for your talents, but a document that should tick the boxes set out by an employer. Think long and hard about the type of company you’re applying to, and look to add information they would find useful and interesting. Write a Memorable Cover Letter Writing a cover letter is similar to writing a college essay, and it shouldn’t be treated as a regurgitation of facts already on your resume. No one is going to spend 10 or 15 minutes reading an elongated version of your resume. Your cover letter should start off with a few interesting lines that hook the reader into reading more. Within the letter, it’s important to draw a connection between your abilities, past experiences, and volunteer work to the job you want. This connection should be clever and innovative, not something obvious and boring. Your cover letter should also be concise. Writing two or three pages is a mistake. By no means write more than four full paragraphs, and sometimes you can wrap it up in just six sentences. How to Ace the Interview Confidence and a complete knowledge of the subject matter will ensure success in 99 percent of interviews. Researching the company, practicing, and reviewing sample answers make a difference, but you won’t last a minute in the interview chair if you’re lacking confidence. After all, if you can’t make your work background sound exciting, why should the interviewer be interested? Conversely, if they see someone who’s firm in their convictions, knows what they’re talking about, and answers with authority, the hiring manager’s confidence in your abilities will immediately increase. Ultimately, there’s no foolproof way to go out and get a job. Everyone has their own methods of preparing for interviews, writing resumes, and creating cover letters. But following the tips above will give you the best chance of success. It’s understandable to conform to a rigid structure when applying for a job, but make sure your creativity, unique qualities, and personality shine through.