If you have been job searching for a while, or just starting out, there are certain things you can do that will greatly increase your chances of landing that perfect job. These things all require a little effort on your part, but the payoff can be HUGE. These three things will separate you from the competition, put you in a position to ask for more money (if you so choose), and give your potential employer a sense that you are a professional person who has their act together. So without further ado, here are three ways to greatly increase your chances of success:
1.) Submit job specific resumes and cover letters to every job you apply for – Single-handedly the greatest mistake people make when job searching is not tailoring their resume and cover letter (you are including a cover letter with EVERY job application… aren’t you?) to the job posting. This means looking at the job posting and making sure that your relevant experience for that job is highlighted in both your resume and cover letter.
You have at the max 2-3 minutes of a hiring manager’s time when they are reviewing your resume and cover letter. If those two items are not tailored to their company and how you can help them, you lose their interest VERY quickly. Simply Great Resumes considers this so important that we offer a Job Seekers Package (one of a kind in the industry) that includes this custom tailoring of resumes and cover letters for up to 5 job postings. We have seen TIME and TIME again, the success rate of individuals who tailor their resume and cover letter vs those that don’t. This is a no brainer!
2.) Show up to the job interview 5 minutes early and be prepared – I hope that it goes without saying that you NEVER want to be late to an interview, but you also don’t want to be too early. The perfect time to show up for a job interview is 5 minutes early. This shows the employer that you are conscientious of their time and prompt.
In addition to being 5 minutes early, you also want to show up prepared! This means bringing with you at least 3 copies of your resume, wearing a suit (yes, a suit! It is absolutely required for most jobs, and can almost never hurt you), and having 3-5 questions ready to ask your interviewer (see our blog post ‘5 questions to ask in your next interview’, if you are struggling with what you should ask).
3.) Send a thank-you note – Within 24 hours (at the most but honestly it should be within a few hours) of an interview (phone or in-person) you should send or e-mail a thank you to the interviewer. The thank you note serves two purposes. First, it brings your name back to the attention of the interviewer. Second, the thank-you note tells the interviewer that you are a serious candidate who values their time and truly wants the job. If you and another candidate are ‘neck and neck’ for the position, this one step is likely to tilt the decision in your favor.
There you have it, three things that will separate you from the crowd and get you noticed, interviewed, and hired!