Staying Competitive in a Competitive Job Market
Some job markets are more competitive than others.
But since the pandemic, the difference between the number of jobs and the number of job seekers has grown substantially.
Which means that most of us are going to face job searching in a competitive job market, no matter which industry we’ve set our sights on.
This competitive employment landscape is stressful for most people. But thankfully, there are some ways you can beat that stress (and the competition) by following a few simple strategies for success!
In today’s article, we’ll go over how you can go above and beyond to stand out from the crowd in your job search! Let’s have a look!
Self-improvement singles you out
All job seekers want to work, but not everyone wants to work on their work-readiness.
Whether you’re unemployed, or looking to make a change in your career, bettering yourself helps better your chances at impressing an employer!
And the most surprising part? It’s surprisingly easy.
Unless you absolutely need a new degree for a certain job, you don’t have to go to (or back to) school to hit the books. There are countless online courses where you can read up on skills that show you’re not just ready to work — you’re ready to get better at whatever you do!
You can find free resources, instructionals, even mentors. And not only will these allow you to invest in yourself, they’ll also make your potential employers more interested in investing in you, too!
Pro Tip: Laid off due to the pandemic? Learning new skills, or leveling up your existing ones, is a perfect way to prove to employers that you’re still ahead of the competition!
Master your resume
The best way to master your resume is to write a “master resume”!
A master resume is a COMPLETE history of all your work, education, skill building activities, and accomplishments. It doesn’t have to conform to a certain page length. In fact, the longer the better!
When it comes time for you to apply for a new job opportunity, you’ll simply need to take out the irrelevant parts to get it down to size.
And, by changing a few keywords to match the job posting, you can create a custom-tailored document that will impress recruiters (and the applicant tracking software they use).
Not only does this help you save time when applying, but it ensures that only the most relevant info is on your resume. And a relevant resume always shows recruiters you’re a better match than the rest!
Show off your soft skills
I once heard a plumber say “I can teach anyone to fix a toilet, but I can’t teach anyone how to talk to our clients the right way”.
Soft skills are something we start to pick up from an early age. They are things like manners, workplace etiquette, communication skills, teamwork, personability, kindness, etc.
These traits aren’t something we get degrees or certifications for. But they can still be shown off in a well-written resume, or in a pre-planned interview response.
Think about what achievements prove your soft skills, and how you can highlight them for employers.
Maybe you’ve worked in retail or food service, and you have experience interacting as the face of your business. Maybe you’ve successfully handled negative customers. Or maybe you’ve been a supervisor, helping your team to work as a group.
Take a look at the ways you’ve exhibited soft skills in your life, and recruiters will be more interested in taking a look at bringing you on board!
Pay close atention
Did you catch the typo in “attention”? If so, you’re already someone who takes in the small details.
And when learning about potential job opportunities, it’s critical to play close attention to the small details.
Trust me, it makes a BIG difference to employers!
Not only do you need to review your own resumes, cover letters, and correspondence to ensure there are no grammatical errors or typos, but you also need to make sure you understand job postings completely.
You’d be surprised how many job seekers miss key instructions on how to apply for a job. And if you can’t follow instructions before you even get the job, no employer is going to trust that you can follow them on the job.
Pay attention to keywords about what makes an ideal candidate, too. By using them in your resume and interview, you can show recruiters that you’re not just another candidate — you’re the perfect match!
One of the best ways to strengthen your position when applying for a new position is to get reinforcement from your network.
Not only will people in your network help you learn about new job opportunities, they can help you get them!
Your network can act as your references, and vouch for your qualifications.
Think of it like buying a product online — wouldn’t you feel better about one that has lots of positive reviews instead of no reviews (or negative ones)?
Your recruiters feel the same way about their candidates. If they hear lots of good things about you from their peers, they’ll prefer you over the competition!
Volunteering adds value, and so do side hustles!
Volunteering, self-employment, or freelancing/contract work are powerful ways to set yourself apart.
Not only do they prove you have initiative and motivation, but they are also ways that you can build sought-after skills.
You might have to teach yourself how to do something you’ve never done before, or use a technology that’s brand new to you. But by proving you can handle this challenge on your own, employers will be more likely to trust that you can handle your new job well, too!
Adding these experiences to your resume will show you have the right mindset, and are a unique candidate, unlike any other.
Looking for more info about staying competitive in a competitive market?
META has the resources you need to succeed! Call or email us to start getting a leg up on the competition today!