In today’s world, where everything’s in ‘the cloud’, the recruitment industry has become largely conducted online. With so many qualified people competing in the job search, it’s more and more difficult to make an impression with potential employers and recruiters.
The global workforce is steadily increasing, and job roles are rapidly changing with the times, making it more important than ever to find a way to gain an advantage and stand out.
This may seem a difficult challenge, considering the huge growth of talent looking for work, but there are some things you can now do to get noticed.
Optimise your online presence
Start by ensuring that all of your active social media profiles are complete. Upload your CV to online career sites and targeted brand recruitment portals. Create professional profiles that showcase your strengths and what you can offer employers.
Make sure your online profiles contain relevant information, including your skills, experience, and personality.
Consistency is key too, conflicting social profiles with differing skills, attributes and qualifications will hinder, if not destroy, your chances of attracting employers.
43% of recruiters extended an offer to applicants as a direct result of the professional image they portrayed online.*
Many recruiters and employers are looking for an overall good fit for their team and company culture. This means they’re also looking for someone who will integrate with the teams they have in place and someone that fits in with the overall brand vision.
As an example, if your goal is to work for a marketing company, then showcasing your experience and skills in the field of advertising to potential recruiters as well as demonstrating your outgoing and creative personality can be a winning combination.
Utilise career sites
With more recruiters than ever using online resources such as LinkedIn for employing new talent. It’s extremely important to have a strong and well defined presence on a popular professional network like this.
To start, create an engaging profile. Make sure your summary section is completed accurately and with relevant and individualistic details. Consider this section to be your first impression.
This is one of the first things recruiters will notice and read about you, so it’s extremely important to compile a strong statement of who you are, what your goals are and why you would be a valuable addition to any brand.
Don’t be generic
Telling potential recruiters or employers that you’re “ambitious” and “dependable” might be true, but they’re also the kind of descriptions that will be on thousands of other profiles.
Many people like to use generalised statements such as “I’m a team player” that it’s quickly become a cliché. The point is to stand out. So try using a more creative way to tell recruiters your story.
Are you a journalist? Why not create your summary like a news piece? Use the summary space to showcase your writing talent as well as a place for listing your qualifications.
Maybe you’re you trying to find work as a graphic designer? Be sure to use your summary as a place to showcase the kind of designs you specialise in and explain your artistic approach. Use your unique ideas and specialised skills to make the kind of impression that will excite recruiters with your potential and leave them wanting to find out more about you.
Promote your diversity
Also make sure that you list all the organisation’s you’ve ever been a part of and any certifications or qualifications you have, even if it is not directly related to the field you are looking into entering.
Expand further on the reasons why you would be a great fit for the field you’re interested in by using the experience you have in other areas. Many recruiters like to see fresh ideas and diversity in their potential candidates. Recruiting diversity in the workplace has become a popular strategy among many top companies, and highlighting your diverse background might be just the kind of details they’re looking for.
Choose your words wisely
Keywords can be a make or break for your exposure to recruiters and potential employers.When you create an online presence with your LinkedIn profile, be sure to use numerous and relevant keywords that indicate the field you want to work in and the experience you already have.
Use appropriate keywords in the summary and specialities sections that are relevant to the jobs you are applying for. It’s well known that many employers will search with relevant keywords of the positions they’re trying to fill.
Recruiters will perform many varying searches every day for a vast array of keywords. Ensuring that you’re including relevant and searched for keywords in your profiles will benefit you in two ways:
- It will increase your chances of appearing in the search results
- It will improve your chances of appearing high up in the search results
Obviously just being in an employer’s search results is important but making all efforts to appear high up is crucial for visibility and to avoid missing out to those above you.
Research relevant keywords
Keywords are not only an important part of finding results of general inquiries on search engines, they’re also an important element of keeping your profile high on the lists of those who are searching.
Research and use the key search terms and phrases that recruiters use when looking for the backgrounds and experiences they need, and insert those terms into your profile.
Adjusting your profile summaries accordingly is an ongoing and organic process. As you become more au fait with which words and phrases work for you you’ll be consistently optimizing your profile(s) accordingly.
On LinkedIn, clicking on “Who’s Viewed Your Profile” and finding the list of top keywords used to find your profile, you can perform this check. This is an excellent way to find out how successful (or not) your keywords have been in bringing traffic to your page.
Connect beyond the obvious
While it’s important to make direct contacts and interact with the people who make the decisions in hiring, there are other areas you can make relevant interactions as well.
40% of recruiters extended and offer to a candidate as a result of their communication skills on social media.*
Try joining company LinkedIn groups and maintaining a strong presence in the areas potential recruiters are openly accessing. Follow the company, and the various branches of the company, through social media outlets like Twitter.
Writing and keeping a blog can also be a great way to open new doors. When you have interesting and relevant things to say in your field, job seekers may notice, and it may just give you an advantage.
Use other social media too
Facebook, Pinterest, and even Instagram are also becoming exceptional social media tools for many job seekers, allowing you to directly communicate and engage with the companies you wish to work for, often offering an easier and more personal way to connect.
46% of recruiters say that obtaining a good feel for an applicant’s personality through social media led to them extending an offer.*
Try engaging with professionals you look up to and sending them a message of interest. While this may not be the best approach for all companies, it’s worth checking how common it is for their staff to interact on these platforms. Many professionals have admitted that connecting with them through these kinds of social channels can offer a big advantage.
Make yourself available for opportunities
Another important aspect of making new connections is to remember to always be easily and readily approachable. Maintain your online presence regularly and always respond promptly to inquiries.
Even if you’re not immediately looking to replace your position or move on to a different company, keeping an open line of communication and continually increasing relevant connections can mean more opportunities down the line.
Continue to nurture connections and keep the windows of opportunity wide open.
Use your network of friends
It’s also helpful to build relationships beyond your direct circle and connect to others through friends.Your friend’s acquaintances, and even previous co-workers, can be great connectors to potential recruiters. Networking among friends has become a viable way to broaden your social and professional footprints.
Referrals from your friends can be one of the most effective ways for you to find job openings and obtain interviews for the open positions you’re interested in.
While being referred by a friend has proven to be a great advantage to people seeking new positions, giving them an edge in the interview process, it’s also important to ensure that your friends know exactly what your goals are and how relevant your experience is.
Do they understand your professional goals? Are they referring you to the right kind of position? It’s important that you make your professional desires known to those in your social circles so they can be more effective connectors.
Make sure all of your personal connections are aware of your experiences and the qualities you can offer an employer, so they’ll be able to accurately convey that to their professional connections.
With the competition for employment rising and job seekers utilising career sites and improving their personal branding more and more, it’s increasingly important to find a way to stand out from the crowd.
So while online recruiters are continually searching for the qualities they want in a job candidate you need to be prepared. Promote your uniqueness, what you have to offer and find a way to showcase your talents.
Make your online profile shine with optimised keywords, consistently and carefully build your network of personal and professional connections, and stretch beyond your social media comfort zone to include other outlets that may help bring you closer to being recognised by a recruiter to land the job of your dreams.
Keep an ear to the ground
It may seem like a daunting and often impossible task, but ensuring that you’re personal brand is visible and optimised doesn’t have to be a never ending task.
There’s plenty of apps, websites and tools readily available (and often free) to help make sure you don’t miss updates from targeted brands.
Remaining current and making sure that you’re notified the minute an opportunity is published is a very real way to get ahead of your competitors and land a role with a preferred brand.
To find out how to set up everything you need to monitor the web for your next job take a look at this article we’ve previously written on Social Hire.