JOB HUNT / 11 December 2018Qualities Graduates Should Possess While Applying for a Job
So, you’re on the hunt for your first job. Or maybe it’s the next step in your career. You’re reading through job descriptions and stumbled upon one that truly speaks to you. Great benefits. Unlimited PTO. CEO approved. Beautiful location (without needing to sit in traffic for two hours everyday). AND the perfect company culture. Best of all, you have all of the qualifications they’ve asked for in this position (even if you don’t, this article still applies!). Before you get too excited, you start to realize… Hundreds of other people are probably applying for this position too. So what’s going to set me apart?
You may have an amazing cover letter and resume with strong references, but there will probably still be numerous other candidates with similar experiences and skills. If you really want the job, you have to prove your worth. Yes, even before meeting them in person.
A part of my current job is to hire individuals for ProSky’s Branding Intern program. At ProSky, we’ve asked every prospective Branding Intern to complete a simple challenge that shows us that the individual is open to thinking creatively and truly understand those around them. But you’d be surprised how “easy” it may be to distinguish ones who just want to easily breeze through the application process and those who have actually put in some effort and truly show that they want it. In the end, guess which individuals got the job?
Similar to what candidates for any position would go through, your application goes far beyond a cover letter and resume. Here are five tips for marketing yourself to employers that guarantees you make the lasting impression that will land you the job.
Showcase your skills.
Depending on the type of position you are applying to, there is plenty of opportunity to show recruiters what you’ve done. Utilize today’s digital world to create websites, digital profiles or candidate profiles that allows you to showcase examples of what you’ve done. For example, are you applying for graphic design positions? Include your digital portfolio in your application. If you have a printed version of it, be sure to bring your portfolio with you during your interview.
Show them you can be the solution to a problem.
Often times, candidates focus so much on making themselves appear as if they were able to complete a set of tasks rather than showing you’re an achiever. Employers want to see that you can be the solution to a problem. Do this by translating your strengths into specific accomplishments. So, you created a bunch of blog posts for your company’s blog. That doesn’t show the employer how you actually helped or even if you made a difference. Instead, say “Increased traffic to company’s B2C blog by 25% through daily content creation.” It shows employers that not only do you know how to create blog posts - you know how to create effective blog posts that effectively drove up traffic.
Put yourself in the employer’s position and do the thinking for them.
So you know you’d be the perfect person to do the job and you’ve managed to land an interview. But how would you relay that to the recruiter? This is where a little bit of stalking comes in handy (and no, I don’t mean the creepy kind). Sites like LinkedIn are great places for candidates to see beyond what that company’s mission is. Read up on what they’ve been up to and see how your skills and your previous experiences can do to help them. Employers don’t just want to know what you’ve done to help previous employers. They want to see if you can use those experiences to help them.
Sell yourself through your own questions.
At the end of each interview, you’re almost always given the chance to ask questions to the person who’s interviewing you. Take advantage of this opportunity and actually ask important questions. Each question should be an opportunity to further talk about how you go beyond what they’re looking for.
What metrics or goals will my performance be evaluated against?
How much impact will I have being in this role?
Can you tell me what common career paths there are in this department? What sorts of advancements could I work towards?
What are the biggest challenges someone in this position would face?
Are there opportunities for advancement or professional development?
Do you have any concerns about my being successful in this job?
What are the qualities of successful managers or employees in this company?
What’s the most important thing I can accomplish within the first 60 days?
Can you tell me about the team I’ll be working with?
What gets you the most excited about the company’s future?
What are the next steps?
Don’t forget to ask a few questions specifically about the interviewer!
What do you love the most about working here?
Has your role changed since you’ve been here?
What did you do before this and why did you decide to come to this company?
You’ve got all four tips. Take the opportunity to take your first step by creating your own digital profile with ProSky. So go out there and confidently apply for that perfect job! Be sure to add that extra spark that will further set yourself apart from anyone else applying for the same position. Be bold. Be confident. And watch yourself land the job.