Has it been awhile since you’ve been on the job hunt? There have been a lot of changes over the past few decades, so if you want to be considered a viable candidate, you’ll have to adjust to the new rules.
Today, it’s all about social media and digital resumes and – well, before you get too nervous, let’s talk about the biggest differences between then and now, and how you can compete in the new era:
1. It’s more complex than just sending out resumes. Which, by the way, can be longer than one page, but should also be readable by applicant tracking systems. More on that later.
2. Your experience doesn’t really matter like it used to. Employers no longer want to hear as much about what you did in the past; they want to hear what you can do to help them now.
3. Certain courtesies no longer exist. You shouldn’t expect to hear back when you apply for a job, unless you’re getting contacted for an interview. Sad but true, even in this digital age where so much is automated, very few companies even bother to let you know your resume or online application has been received.
4. Your resume shouldn’t be just a summary of your work and education history. You need to emphasize recent accomplishments, certifications, and training.
5. Your resume needs to be digital-friendly. What does that mean? It should be easily uploadable, downloadable, and scannable. In other words, it should be saved in a common format with no bullet points, boxes, boldface, unusual fonts or indenting. And it should contain the keywords or buzzwords that employers in your field are looking for.
6. If the terminology in #5 was intimidating, you’ll want to become a little more computer literate. You need to be comfortable with applying for jobs online, and you need to know how to research target companies on the Internet. Look around for free classes—your local library or community education program are good places to start.
7. The old saying “it’s all about who you know” is more true than ever. Finding employment these days is not always about applying for existing open positions but often about identifying needs potential employers have and demonstrating to them that you can fill these needs. Networking is more important than ever before.
8. Create your story. Be able to explain what makes you different, special and unique and create a clear and compelling picture of what you have to offer. Practice your message, including key talking points and what you would want to emphasize as your strengths.
Still feeling unsure? You can call or contact Synerfac anytime you have questions about interviewing in today’s IT, engineering or scientific job markets. If you come on board with us, we can work with you on your job search and interviewing skills, as well as targeting your dream company.