Nowadays, it seems like a proper application document is the only way to get a job interview. Though it’s true that a well-written cover letter and resume are a sure-fire way of getting a job interview, they are not the only factors.
We want to make sure that you’ve considered all options to reinforce your chances. Below are the best ways to get a job fast along with some handpicked tips for getting an interview.
Difficulty No. 1 – How Much Time to Spend on Job Hunting?
Forbes contributing author and career expert Jack Kelly advise candidates to treat the job search as a second job. Whether you currently have a job and are contemplating a career move or you are unemployed, a job hunt requires a lot of time and effort in order to succeed quickly.
Kelly recommends that candidates set a daily schedule and rigorously follow the list every day.
Lou Adler, author of an ultimate textbook for all job seekers, The Essential Guide for Hiring & Getting Hired, points out that sending resumes and applications should not take more than 20% of your time, as there is plenty of other work to be done.
What Exactly You Should Do: A Quick List
- Search jobs online
- Respond to the listings
- Tailor your resume and cover letter to each company’s job requirements (use resume and cover letter templates and/or resume writing services to customize each document for your job search)
- Network and get referrals
- Enhance your LinkedIn profile / engage on social media
- Prepare and practice your elevator pitch
Difficulty No. 2 – Can I Give Myself an Unbiased and Impartial Assessment?
Self-introspection will help you. Kelly advises that candidates should be brutally honest with themselves. You cannot sugarcoat your weaknesses or downplay underperformance when you are contemplating your chances. You need to take a close look at your education, soft and hard skills, experience, abilities, and competences. Some of your strengths could support getting certain jobs right away, while for other positions they may be lacking. At the very least, you will get a clear idea of what you could get in the long run and what you can get now.
Chris Westfall, Forbes contributor, and international business coach explains that resourcefulness is a crucial characteristic for job seekers because it enables them to respond specifically to an employer’s inquiry. You may have a somewhat different experiences than what is required, or you may have had a series of unsuccessful interviews, and now you feel that you have lost your motivation.
This is the exact time to remember about your resourcefulness and critical thinking and respond to the employer’s job requirements by tailoring all your experience and qualifications to what is expected of you. You cannot do this properly if you are not fully aware of who you are and what you can do.
Difficulty No. 3 – Don’t Fend off An Unappealing Job Opportunity
It is a common occurrence for job seekers to refuse the recruiters’ job offer after the first phone call because they don’t get the answers they expected to their questions. However, career experts say that the first phone call is not the time or place to ask many questions. Most terms are negotiable after the organization becomes very interested in offering you the position.
So don’t feel that you don’t want to waste anyone’s time, and don’t think that you are wasting your time, by coming to a job interview. Often, recruiters are not very knowledgeable about the job offer, as their task is simply to weed out unfit candidates – not set the terms of employment. If you feel that you are perfect for the role, give it a shot to happen.
A Referral is the Best Way to Get Hired
Referrals include all the characteristics mentioned earlier. They lend you credibility. To get a referral, you often need to rely on your resourcefulness and display proper communication skills.
If you can network and get a referral from someone from the company to which you are applying, that could carry more weight and increase your probability of getting an interview.
In fact, many experts believe that you should aim to spend a large chunk of your time networking and getting referrals. Lou Adler says, “The overriding goal should be 50-60 people in your job-hunting network within 2-3 weeks.”
A Few More Tips on How to Land a Job Interview
So far, most of the tips have referred to my resume and cover letter preparation. Here are a few tips for sending out your document.
Always use a name. Don’t address your cover letter and resume with ‘Dear Sirs’ or ‘To Whom It May.’ Always find out the name of the hiring manager or person in charge.
Mention big names. It is stimulating for recruiters and hiring managers to see that your cover letter is also being sent to some senior members in the company. This will motivate them to pay closer attention to your application.
Customize your email. Don’t just include the recruiter’s name. Pick a catchy subject line. For example, emails with ‘Re:’ in the subject line are opened more often because recruiters automatically think that it is a response to their previous email.
Say you are just inquiring. Some recruiters will become more interested in you if you say you are not actively looking for a job. You can say that you heard from a friend (a referral!) about a job opening and just wanted to find out more.
How to Have a Good Interview
The following tips can be used during both the job hunting process and the job interview.
Ask about similar jobs. Even if the vacant role is not what you were expecting or if you feel that the employer does not see you as a good fit, you can ask the company to consider you for other positions.
Be ready to be flexible. If you realize that you’re not an ideal candidate, but you still want the job, you can suggest taking on a part-time role or providing consulting services. This way, the company takes on less risk and you have an opportunity to prove yourself.
Take smaller steps. If the market is oversaturated with propositions, you should tread with care. Agree to or suggest having a phone conversation. It could end up turning into an offer for a job interview.
How to Interview for a Job
You never know exactly what type of questions you will be asked at an interview, so the more prepared you are, the better. Get ready for any question a recruiter might ask, such as ‘Which three things are most important to be successful in this role?’ or ‘Give an example of an effective resolution for a problem in your job.’
A great way to get ready for an interview is to google some of the most common behavioral questions and techniques recruiters use in interviews. Usually, they want to know how well you know the industry you are working in or how quickly you can learn. Even 20-30 minutes of simple research on the company will considerably improve your chances of getting employment.
How to have the perfect interview? Be prepared to share a couple of examples that show you are resourceful and can solve any problem that might arise. Even if your story is not directly linked to the job to which you are applying, it will still showcase you as a resourceful and creative person who can fit many jobs.