There's a saying that "if you do the same as you've always done, you'll continue to get the same results you've always got". In the realms of your career, this is particularly important for anyone trying to land a job. Whilst it's true that persistence pays off, there also comes a point where you have to recognise that what you're doing to land a job simply isn't working!
In recent months I've read some great examples of candidates having been hired by running an advert campaign on LinkedIn, targeted at only being displayed to key decision makers from their desired employer; and of candidates securing jobs based on relationships and reputations formed on Twitter. These approaches aren't for everyone - and certainly I'd recommend that you gain a fuller understanding of how employers are hiring today before you decide that a more unorthodox route is appropriate.
But with that said, I was delighted to have the chance to share with you these ideas from Val Matta on new ways you might consider trying to land a job. Genuinely hope they prove helpful!
As a job seeker, you’ve probably heard the following quite a bit: In order to land a job, you have to be different, you have to be bold, and you have to stand out from the sea of other job seekers. But apart from having a well-designed resume or stellar references, what are some fresh new ways to land a job?
Sometimes, your best bet for landing an open position doesn’t mean simply emailing your resume, where it often goes unanswered or gets lost in the job seeker black hole. Putting in the extra effort to use new tech trends in a creative way or reach out on a more personal level can be just what you need to get your foot in the door. Check out these fresh ways to land a job:
Visuals are a great way to stand out in your job search. For example, a woman recently landed a job using a Vine video resume, which highlighted her skills and accomplishments in fun way — and in just six seconds! Although a video resume isn’t as in-depth as a paper one (and should probably be accompanied with a traditional document), it gets your point across in an engaging way while positioning you as someone who’s willing to differentiate themselves by going above and beyond.
Quick tip: Keep your videos short and sweet, and shoot in a well-lit, clean area. Create a script to highlight your accomplishments quickly and succinctly — don’t rule out the help of props or animations! Always include links to outside resources that can further explain your credibility, like a LinkedIn profile or PDF resume.
It’s certainly a sign of the times to think of hand-delivering your resume as a standout tactic, but the truth is, many job seekers only use technology to apply for work. Hand-delivering your resume not only picks you apart from other job seekers, it also allows you to meet hiring influencers in the flesh.
Quick tip: To go along with your hand-delivered resume, try sending a handwritten thank you note to follow up. This piggybacks on your initial tactic, showing your appreciation for the employer or recruiter’s time while maintaining you as an out-of-the-box thinker.
Creating an infographic resume is another visually appealing tactic that can help you to snag attention. Think about it from the hiring manager’s perspective. If all else is equal, which would you gravitate towards: A candidate with a standard black and white, bullet-pointed resume, or a candidate with a colorful infographic resume? The infographic resume offers a fresh take on something that’s been done over and over again.
Quick tip: Be creative! Think about a theme to enhance your infographic resume, such as “Top 10 Reasons to Hire Me.”
Job search software aggregates millions of open positions from employers around the globe, pulling from recruiters, newspapers, employer websites, and job boards. Most programs include tons of resources that are completely customized to your needs, allowing you to filter jobs and search specific to your industry, education, location, or years of experience. In addition, many also house helpful resources, like up-to-date employer contact information or tools for storing your job search history.
Quick tip: Although you may want to use a million software programs, keep your search targeted by tapping into just one or two. This will help you to stay organized.
Who says you can’t control your own job search? Be bold and set an informational interview with an employee who works at your dream company — pick their brain about what they do on the day-to-day and how they landed their position. Or, contact the hiring manager and ask if you can meet with them one-on-one to gather more information about the company or job. This does a few things: First, it allows you to get a foot in the door by establishing a professional connection. Second, setting up an interview on your own terms shows your interest and initiative. The combination of the two puts you on a higher playing field than your competition and helps you to stand out.
Quick tip: Work with the employee or hiring manager on their terms — if they only have 15 minutes, they only have 15 minutes. Keep your eye on the clock and don’t push it. And always bring a copy of your resume!
Taking a fresh approach to your job search will increase your chances at getting noticed and getting hired. Try the above tips to make it happen.
What do you think? What are some other fresh ways to stand out and land a job?
Val Matta is the vice president of business development at CareerShift, a comprehensive job hunting and career management solution for university career centers that gives students and alumni complete control over their job search. Connect with Val and CareerShift on LinkedIn.
Photo: Christian Holmér
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