5 Powerful Ways to Stand Out to Employers When Job Hunting
Job hunting is a nerve-wracking process, and sometimes it may feel like no matter how qualified you are for a position, there is always someone out there with even more accolades.
When it comes to landing your dream job, you’ll need to get creative to find ways to separate yourself from the field of applicants. Updating your resume and writing a strong cover letter are important aspects of the application process, but there are more things you can do to stand out to employers that you may not have thought of before!
Keep reading to learn our top tips for standing out to your potential employer in bold and unique ways.
1. Showcase Your Skills With a Portfolio
A surefire way to help your application stand out while job hunting is to include a portfolio that showcases some of your best and most relevant work.
For example, it’s one thing to tell an employer that you have excellent writing skills on your resume and/or cover letter, but showing them that you have these skills and demonstrating how you have applied them in past work is sure to get their attention.
In the past, applicants who wanted to show a potential employer their portfolio might have waited until an interview to bring in a hard copy. Today, you can seamlessly include a link to your online portfolio with your resume and cover letter. This helps you to immediately stand out from the other applicants and can give you a better chance at landing an interview.
2. Use LinkedIn to Boost Your Credibility
If you’re like me, you might not be the biggest fan of social media. While the online world has its downfalls, it is an undeniably important part of modern life, and job hunting is no exception.
LinkedIn has continued to surge in popularity in recent years, and it is now a fundamental part of the hiring process for many employers.
You can use LinkedIn to boost the credibility of your application and make it easy for employers to verify that you are who you say you are and you have the experience that you say you do.
Strong LinkedIn profiles have references, endorsements, and plenty of professional connections. You can include a link to your LinkedIn profile with your application materials to add a layer of credibility and depth to your application.
Not having a LinkedIn profile in today’s job environment could be a dealbreaker for some employers. Google likes LinkedIn, so when an employer searches for your name, your LinkedIn profile is likely to be one of the first things to appear.
3. Customization Is Key
A strong resume and cover letter are no less important today than they were in the past, but it takes more to make these basic application materials stand out in today’s competitive job hunting market.
A critical aspect of a strong application is a customized resume and cover letter that have been fine-tuned with a specific job opportunity in mind.
It may be helpful to think of your resume and cover letter as an advertisement for yourself. The most effective advertisements aren’t “one size fits all.” Instead, they target a specific audience and make a strong argument for convincing them to buy the product.
Similarly, when job hunting, your resume and cover letter should target the potential employer and make it clear to them that you are an outstanding candidate for the position.
Tailor your resume so that the professional experience that is most relevant to the job you are applying for is listed first. Write your cover letter with the position in mind and be sure to include information about the value that you would bring to the hiring company and how you could help the company grow in the position you are applying for.
4. Interviews Are a Two-Way Street
It’s perfectly natural to get nervous before a job interview, especially if the position is something you’re really excited about. A key tip to successful interviewing is to remember that a job interview is also a chance for you to interview the employer.
It’s always a good idea to study and prepare for interviews by researching the company and dialing in your answers to common interview questions. However, few applicants realize that another key element of interview preparation is to bring your own set of questions for the employer.
By asking clarifying questions to ensure that the job is a great fit for you, you demonstrate to the employer that you are not just a desperate job-seeker, but an applicant that is committed to finding the best fit to let your skills shine through.
5. Start the Job Early
It might seem like a gutsy move, but one way to leave an impression on employers is to show up to your interview with a detailed plan for how you will start adding value to the company immediately.
Remember: Employers are looking to hire someone who can help their business grow and/or maintain success. If you can lay out a plan for exactly how you will help them achieve their goals, you are sure to stand out from the bulk of interviewees.
Crafting such a plan takes careful research on the way the company conducts business and the ways they are yet to grow. Conducting this research will prepare you to share a plan that highlights the value you will add to the company, while also preparing you for basic interview questions.