Very few people are working in their “dream job” – and the majority of those who are currently employed are thinking about leaving for a new job.
If you’re struggling to get hired into your dream job, the reason is likely more about what you’re not doing than about what you are doing. The following five actions are very simple, but they’ll give you an edge when it comes to landing the job of your dreams.
Brush Up Your Resume
Your resume is likely to influence your job prospects more than anything else, yet recruiters spend a measly six seconds on the average resume. In other words, you have about six seconds to make an impression.
Here are some tips to spice up your resume to increase your job prospects:
- Understand the “four key areas” recruiters focus on and pay special attention to them. These four key areas are: education, job titles you’ve had, companies you’ve worked at, and the start and end dates of jobs you’ve had. Put special focus into letting these sections reflect you in a good light and you automatically increase your job prospects.
- Edit your resume for grammar and spelling errors. Research shows that 59 percent of recruiters will reject job candidates due to spelling or grammar errors in their resume. If possible, ask someone else to put an extra eye on your resume to root out grammar and spelling errors.
- Don’t try to be too fancy. Research shows that recruiters are more interested in the content of your resume than its design. In fact, 40 percent of recruiters reject job candidates due to too much design.
Work on Your LinkedIn Profile
While there is no doing away with the resume just yet, it is also important not to ignore LinkedIn… which is effectively a resume online.
Just how important is LinkedIn to your job search process? Very important, apparently. Recruiters are paying more attention to LinkedIn, and a particular study found that a massive 94 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn for hiring. But interestingly, only 34 percent of job candidates are active on LinkedIn.Just how important is LinkedIn to your job search process? Very important, apparently. Recruiters are paying more attention to LinkedIn, and a particular study found that a massive 94 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn for hiring.Click To Tweet
More likely than not, a recruiter will use LinkedIn to decide whether to hire you. Take charge of your LinkedIn profile by doing the following:
- Ensure your LinkedIn picture is professional. Statistics show that when taking a look at candidates’ LinkedIn profiles, recruiters spend an average of 19 percent of their time just viewing the candidate’s picture. This is your opportunity to let your picture speak a thousand words.
- Use relevant tags and keywords to ensure your profile is discoverable in the LinkedIn search engine.
- Just like with your resume, ensure that your LinkedIn profile clearly identifies the “four key areas” recruiters pay attention to when reviewing resumes. These are: Education, Job title, companies you’ve worked for, and start and end dates of your jobs at these companies.
Work on Your Online Presence
If you haven’t cared much about an online presence, it might be in your best interest to start working on it.
Exactly why is an online presence so important? Some quick facts:
- 73 percent of companies have used social media to successfully recruit a candidate.
- 70 percent of employers have turned down job candidates due to something negative they found online.
If you don’t have an online presence yet, or if you haven’t paid attention to your online presence, this might actually be getting in the way of you getting your dream job. The effort you put into your online presence can be something as simple as sprucing up your social media presence and being active in a few forums related to your industry or it could be something more elaborate like creating your website (which means choosing a web host, building an actual website,and using your website to demonstrate your expertise to potential employers).
The more elaborate your online presence is, the better. While there are many case studies demonstrating the importance of having a solid online presence, a very notable one is that of Allison Hitz, who runs The Book Wheel blog. According to Hitz, during her job search process, employers were more interested in her website than the fact that she had a Master’s degree.The more elaborate your online presence is, the better. According to Allison Hitz, during her job search process, employers were more interested in her website than the fact that she had a Master’s degree.Click To Tweet
Get Relevant Job Experience First
When you’re fresh out of college and need a job, it can be very frustrating realizing how difficult it is to get a job due to lack of experience. Nobody wants to take a chance on you because you don’t have relevant work experience — in fact, it’s so bad that research shows that 66 percent of hiring managers view new college grads as “unprepared for the workplace.”
But how do you get relevant job experience without first getting a job? Here are some ideas:
- Start gathering experience while in college: this can be done through a part-time job or a nonprofit job. Every little experience adds up and will speak for you once you’re out of college.
- Work on part-time gigs relevant to your desired job. Something as simple as starting a blog, working as a freelance consultant, doing part-time freelance writing gigs, etc., can be used to garner experience you can reference when applying to a job as a recent college graduate.
Focus on the Unadvertised Jobs
The most important jobs won’t be advertised. How do I know? Because the statistics say so:
- 80 percent of jobs will not be listed online.
- More than a third of all hires come through referrals.
To get your dream job, you have to go beyond looking where the job ads are posted. Instead, try connecting with key people at the organization where you are interested in working and have them give you a referral. This way, not only are you likely to be aware of job posting not made available to the general public but you will significantly increase your chances of getting hired.
TELL US WHAT YOU THINK
Have you landed your dream job? How did you do it? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.