Improve your odds of finding a job
The first contact in a job search occurs in one of two ways – the hiring organization reaches out or you do.
When identifying potential candidates to reach out to, hiring organizations search their own candidate databases or public job sites like LinkedIn or Monster.
On your part, you can reach out to potential hiring organizations through your contact network which works there, recruitment firms, or responding to a job posting.
Be found by hiring organizations
Through their candidate databases
Most organizations have databases of past job applicants - professionals who thought they were a good fit for specific roles and also conveyed an interest in working for the organization. Whenever you apply for a role on a job site, or through a referral, your resume will likely go into an internal database and be available for searches not only then but in the future as well.
When seeking new hires, these databases are searched to identify potential candidates.
A well written resume enhances the odds of your profile showing up for the right fit roles during the database search.
Role type and sector or functional specializations are keywords most used in searches run on databases. Ensure that the role scope (e.g. client partner, sales director, practice architect) and specialization (e.g. insurance, telecom, or analytics) are mentioned against each role in your resume.
When writing content under the roles, bear in mind that a recruiter may have to read through many resume’s when shortlisting candidates. Keep the content succinct and outline key accomplishments in each role. These will enhance readability and make best impact.
Through Job boards
The other sources which hiring organizations and agencies search when looking for potential candidates are external databases like LinkedIn, Monster, and Dice.
Here too, the search is on specific keywords which describe the role which is bring searched for e.g. Client partner – Insurance or Solution architect – Analytics. Mentioning the role type and specialization against each role on the job site profile will enhance the chances of your name showing in the right searches.
If you are shortlisted through a job site, and discussions commence, it is very likely that the hiring organization will ask for your resume too. Ensure that there is consistency between the job site profile and the resume. Inconsistencies can throw up a red flag and diminish the credibility of the content which you have mentioned in either profile.
Think of the job board profile as a condensed version of a resume. Use the same chronological job sequence. The content under each role can be shorter than in the resume, perhaps highlighting only the most significant accomplishments, and being extra diligent that no company confidential information is divulged.
There is one very important difference between the resume and a job board profile.
While a resume can be updated and sent when seeking a job, the job board profile is always available for viewing. A current and well written one presents you in good light. One which is not well written or dated always raises a question - If you are not current or quality conscious about your profile which is visible to the entire world on a job board, how diligent and up to date will you be at work?
You found them – your outreach
Through company or public job boards
Most organizations will post roles requiring low to mid experience on their company job site. Many will also post these roles on public job boards like LinkedIn, Monster, or Dice. This is the starting point when investigating if the companies which you are looking to work for are hiring for positions which match your interest and professional skills.
Through your network
In addition to researching company and public job boards, investigate who you know in the relevant group(s) in the companies where you intend to seek a role. These contacts can be very valuable sources of insight into job opportunities within their groups.
Recruitment agencies which work for the industry and roles which you are seeking are another resource which can help in identifying and positioning you for roles. If you have worked with and had a good experience with one in the past, this is the time to give them a call. If you do not have past experience with any recruitment agency, talk to those in your trusted network working in similar jobs and check if they can recommend or refer you to a relevant recruitment house.
A connection in the relevant groups, directly or through a recruitment firm can be particularly helpful in two situations.
Many mid & senior level positions are not publicly advertised. There may be nuances in the role, specific personality traits, or the need to keep the search confidential. Hence, if you are looking for a mid or senior role, connecting with your direct network and recruitment firms can be even more important.
There may also be roles which are likely to come up in the near future and not yet posted on job sites. An outreach to your network may put you in the queue for these positions even before they are publicly advertised.
Whether reaching out to your network or a recruitment agency, communicate clearly what job you think you will do well, in which industry, and why. This will help your network in their search to check if the appropriate role is available within their group(s).
You can be reached out to by companies looking to fill a role which matches your skills and experience. Improve your odds of being found for the right job searches by ensuring that your resume & job board profile are current, clearly mention the role type & specialization against each role, and are succinct & focused to enhance readability.
The other path to approach a job search is to reach out to your network and search agencies. When doing so, approach those which are engaged with the relevant industry & function in which you are looking for work. Clearly articulating the role(s) which you are seeking & why you will be a good fit will help them in identifying the right roles and positioning your candidature.
If you are currently seeking a job, you can use the Valenco job search checklist tool to assist you in approaching it methodically. Click this URL to access it, Valenco job search checklist