Customize Your Cover Letter and Resume
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to use the same resume for every job application. Now, this doesn’t mean that you have to completely rewrite your resume each time you apply for a position. It simply means that you need to customize your resume according to each company. Each job has a unique set of requirements, opportunities, and values. Before applying, make sure you do your research on the company and what they’re looking for, then make adjustments to your resume accordingly, highlighting your skills that best apply to this particular job. Also, be sure to read the entirety of the job description to make sure you meet all of the qualifications.
Do Your Research
Before sending your resume for review, take a few hours to do some thorough research on the company you’re applying to work at. Focus on finding out about their core values, their ideals, and their company mission. Ask yourself not only if you are a good fit for the company, but what skill sets you have that you can bring to their team. Once you’ve identified those, use them as the framework on which to base your resume around. Highlight your strengths and what unique qualities you have that will make you not just an employee, but an asset. It’s also not a bad idea to prepare some questions to ask about the company and expectations to have ready if you are called in for an interview.
Let’s be candid: most of us have had a bad job experience early on in your career. Whether it was a position that just wasn’t right for you, a job whose demands you weren’t prepared to handle, or a conflict with the management, you probably have a work experience on your resume you want to omit. You shouldn’t. Listing a short-lived position at a company doesn’t disqualify you from getting a job; it’s how you handle being asked about it. Use it as an opportunity to show that you are able to learn from your mistakes and a talking point of how you adapted from that experience to expand your work ethics and preparedness. A job that didn’t work out isn’t necessarily always a bad thing; it can be an opportunity to show potential employers that you are honest and humble.
Don’t Oversell Yourself
Writing a resume can seem easy at first glance, but there’s a reason why professional resume writers exist. It can be incredibly easy to get tunnel vision when listing your strengths and come across as overly-eager or even narcissistic. You don’t want to undersell yourself, but you also want to ensure that you come across as humble and aware of your growth opportunities as well. It can be helpful to get a second opinion from an established professional, preferably one working in the field you’re going into. Ask them questions about what their industry is looking for and if they have any advice to share about how they crafted their resume.
Take Your Time
This point cannot be stated enough: don’t rush through your resume. Slow down and think through each sentence as you write it. Once it’s complete, set it aside for a few hours, then come back and view it with fresh eyes. Be sure to triple-check your punctuation and grammar, as a simple mistake can be a fatal error in the eyes of a job recruiter.
Keep Your Information Up to Date
In today’s society, how you present yourself on social media is just as important as how you conduct yourself in the workplace. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date and that all of the information is current. If your social media profiles are public, check to make sure there’s nothing offensive or inappropriate in your feeds that would discourage potential employers. Additionally, be sure to only apply to one position at each company at a time. Applying for multiple open positions at the same company can cause confusion for recruiters and make them unsure of what position you’re really looking for.
Don’t Give Up
No matter how many job applications have come back as declined or unresponsive, it’s imperative to never give up in your search. There are companies out there that are perfect fits for you; you simply have to persevere and seek them out. View a rejected application not as a failure, but simply as crossing a company off of your list and getting closer to the company you’ll be perfect for.
However, we know it can be difficult to keep up your resolve. If you ever need an outside perspective to help you fine-tune your resume or assist you in your job searching, contact Neese Personnel. We are a full-service staffing agency in Oklahoma City that has helped job searchers find their dream jobs for over 30 years. View a list of our open job positions in Oklahoma City, then reach out to our team. We’d love to meet with you and see how we may be able to help. Contact us at 405-942-8551 or send us an email at [email protected] to get started.