Successful Job Seekers Reveal Job Search Strategies

The most effective job seekers — those perceived as the “complete package” by hiring managers — target and customize their searches, and are organized and realistic about their opportunities. The 2015 Successful Job Seekers research explores these behaviors and investigates the critical factors and personal traits job seekers feel contributed most to their success in finding employment.

The survey of 589 U.S. professionals of varying ages and in different roles and industries was conducted in March 2015 by the Career Advisory Board, established by DeVry University. Respondents were classified as either passive job seekers, who were recruited by desirable companies and received offers without conducting searches, or active job seekers, who accepted jobs less than six months after starting proactive searches. The Career Advisory Board synthesized the research to help job seekers improve their employment outcomes.

2015 Successful Job Seekers Research Key Findings

1) Successful job seekers are selective and focus on specific targets.

Active job seekers were very selective about targeting individual companies and applying to open positions. More than one-half applied to five or fewer positions and two-thirds applied to 10 or fewer.
Candidates believed matching their qualifications with job requirements was important; 90 percent of active job seekers wanted to be at least 75 percent qualified before applying for a position.
This targeted approach proved highly effective, as nearly one-third of activejob seekers were interviewed for more than half the positions to which they applied.

2) Customizing job applications was a critical success factor in capturing employers’ attention.

Nearly 70 percent reached out to a contact person to find out more about the position, and approximately the same number (67 percent) submitted résumés containing keywords and skills listed in the job description.

See all 4 strategies and the complete article

Twitter Is The Best Job Search Tool You’re Not Using — Here’s How You Can


Sarah Alvarez got her first job after tweeting about Nutella.

She was studying abroad in France in 2012 when she saw that Shout PR, a retail and lifestyle marketing firm, had blogged and tweeted about a healthier alternative to the beloved hazelnut spread. Alvarez tweeted about the article and thanked the firm for posting it, and she later mentioned that Twitter conversation when she emailed the company about summer internships.

Shout had her come for an interview two days after she got back to the U.S. — and it hired her as an intern.

“Because of the way I reached out, they took a look at my social media profile,” said Alvarez, now an account executive at the communications agency Bite. “I interviewed with the person who had written the blog post, and she was very excited that I’d been engaging with her content.”

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the barrage of Twitter noise — and to favor LinkedIn instead as a professional social media tool. But if you don’t look closely at Twitter, you could be missing out on some crucial job and networking opportunities.

Twitter offers a strong network of people in various fields, and companies and hiring managers are increasingly sharing open positions on their accounts.

“It offers less structure as a job search tool, but more opportunities to connect with people,” said Pamela Skillings, an interview coach and founder of Big Interview, a job coaching program. “You can stumble on an opportunity that you might not otherwise find.”

Here are some tips to get the most out of your Twitter job hunt:

1) Spruce up your profile

First, think of your Twitter profile as your brand: Include an identifiable photo, so recruiters recognize who you are.

And don’t underestimate that bio under your picture. “Your bio is your elevator pitch,” said Alyson Weiss, a social media coach. “It’s your first chance to make an impression before people decide to click on you.”

In addition, Skillings recommends including your Twitter handle on your resume. “You’re giving people the ability to find you, and it shows a level of transparency.”

3) Make lists to narrow in on interesting companies

One way to sort through Twitter is to create a list for target companies, Weiss suggests.

“It’s overwhelming with so much content, since you turn around for a second and you have 200 missed tweets,” she said. “With a list, you can see job opportunities from specific companies.”

You can set your list to public or private, and add as many users to it as you like. Clicking on a list gives you a timeline of tweets from just those individuals and companies.

See all 5 tips and the complete HuffingtonPost article

5 Little Resume Tweaks Employers Are Begging For

Ryan Niessen

This is not an article about your resume. It’s an article about your future. About getting your dream job. And about saving your valuable time.

Because if you format your resume the traditional way and fire it off to as many employers as possible –  just like everyone else – then you’re going to get the same results as everyone else…

Frankly, you’ll be ignored.

(Read to the bottom for a far easier way to get their attention.)

The Outdated Model

With so much competition in the job marketplace, employers can afford to be more picky. The good news is, they’re looking for specific things, and I’m going to give you five powerful resume changes you can make today to see immediate results in your job search…

But first, you know how newspapers used to get delivered to the doors of every house in the neighborhood?

And now – where are they? They don’t deliver anymore, right? Because there are better ways to get news. Online. TV. Facebook.

5 Little Resume Tweaks Employers Are Begging For…

That was an outdated model, replaced by something better. And it’s the same way with your resume.

So, here’s your update…

1. WIIFM (What’s In It For Me?)

When an employer is looking at candidates, they’re wondering… what’s in it for me? Meaning – what do you bring to the table? Will you provide more value than you cost?

So, read through their job posting and write out everything they’re looking for. Then, in your resume, touch on those specific points. Clearly show that you have the skills to solve their problems, and that you’re worth more than you cost. Make the benefits you bring to the table abundantly clear, and you’ll make a great first impression.

3. Create Headings That Sell

Most of us were taught to use boring headings like Education, Work Experience, Extracurricular Activities, and so on., but let’s be honest with each other…

Those are boring.

Rather, strategically choose your headings so that an employer can glance at your resume, read the headings, and see that you have the qualifications they’re looking for.

Find out the top qualifications they’re looking for, and then create descriptive and functional headings like “Communication & Customer Service Skills” or “Event Planning Experience.”

These are far more effective, and will significantly increase your chances of getting an interview.

See all 5 tweaks and the complete Careerealism article

10 Ways to Ace the Phone Interview

It’s no secret – If you blow the phone interview or phone screening; your chances of going further as a job candidate are slim.

Phone interviews are a really practical, low cost way for recruiters to narrow the field of candidates pretty quickly. It is a great way to screen the initial field of candidates and make some preliminary decisions about setting up face-to-face meetings. If you learn how to ace the phone interview, you improve your chances of getting your resume moved from the “possible” pile to the “yes” pool.

During a telephone interview, the employer is mostly verifying the information you have on your resume and whether you like it or not, the recruiter is evaluating your communication skills.  If you have had your resume written by a professional resume writer, make sure the language used on your resume is still representative of your own “voice”.

All that being said, here are 10 ways to ace your next phone interview:

4. Speak clearly and watch your tone and energy level during the telephone interview. One seasoned recruiter from a Big 4 Accounting firm shared with me that job seekers who sounded drowsy or low energy usually were not called again.

6. Be prepared to explain everything you have on your resume including dates of employment, career transitions and employment breaks.

10. Be very clear about the next steps when you get off the phone. Wrap up by clarifying details about the next steps for you as a job applicant. Do not get off the phone before restating your interest in the position.

See all 10 ways and the complete HBCU Career Center article

Maybe Don’t Wait for the Weekend to Apply for Jobs

One of the challenges of looking for a job when you have a job is finding time to apply, without taking the risks of applying on the company time. For that reason, some job seekers dedicate their weekends to job searching, sending off their cover letters, CVs, and cold inquiries on Saturday and Sunday. There’s just one problem: a recent study shows that by waiting until no one’s in the office, you might be consigning your resume to a black hole.

The SmartRecruiters study examined 270,000-plus job postings in the hiring platform’s system to determine which days of the week were most popular for job postings, and which were most popular for job applying.

The results showed that if you want to get hired, Tuesday is probably the best day to concentrate your efforts.

“According to the findings, not only is Tuesday the most popular day for companies to post jobs, it’s also the day when the highest number of people apply for jobs and the most popular day to get hired,” writes Kasia Senderowska, Recruiting Data Scientist at SmartRecruiters.

In general, the beginning of the week was better than the end; 58 percent of jobs were posted from Monday to Wednesday, and 54 percent of job applications were submitted during the same.

The majority of job postings went up at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, according to Senderowska, while most applications peaked around 2 p.m. So if you’re going to take a personal day to submit applications, Tuesday’s the day to do it, and if you want to be ahead of the curve, beat the 2 p.m. rush and get in ahead of the sneaky job searchers who file their applications after lunch.

Also significant: many applicants apply during the first week the job is posted.

Read the rest of the PayScale article for more information and advice


6 Qualities Employers Want to See in Millennials

If you’re recent college graduate with a strong GPA, sufficient extracurricular achievements and abundant internship-level work, you have a robust resume that undoubtedly differentiates you from your peers. However, you’ve likely found during your job search, getting a job involves more than a strong resume.

Employers are looking for some full-time experience, but most students haven’t worked full-time in their field prior to graduation. So, how do you get experience when it takes experience to get the needed experience in the first place? It’s a young employee dilemma and one of the most unfortunate catch-22s.

Add to this sayings like, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know,” and “It’s not who you know, it’s who knows you,” and it’s no wonder that you might feel less-than-optimistic about entering the workforce.

Are companies giving up on Millennials?

A new survey shows that executives aren’t looking to attract workers under age 35, according to CBS News. More than a thousand CFOs shared their thoughts about Millennials in this survey conducted by Duke University and CFO Magazine. While many had positive things to say about Generation Y — they’re tech savvy and creative — more than 50 percent thought Millennials weren’t as loyal to their companies as older generations.

Further, 46 percent felt these young professionals have attitudes and entitlement issues and 31 percent think they require more hands-on management.

Why the misfortune for Millennials?

Another recent report found a considerable skills gap between students’ self-assessed readiness and the skills employers actually want. It found students lacked hard skills in areas such as organization, leadership and personal finance, as well as street smarts. This list doesn’t even include the “soft skills” employers seek.

Here are some of the behaviors and skills I’ve found young employees still need to work on: (Click here to tweet this list.)

Six qualities Millennials should focus on

  1. Willingness work hard and learn. Employers want to see that you are eager to earn your keep and show commitment to the organization. Prove to the boss that you deserve that high-level job your degree can get you by working hard with a great attitude no matter what the position — it will get you there that much faster.
  2. Patience and tenacity. As a general rule, promotions and perks aren’t easily granted without the effort. So while you may not get to be manager in six months like you hoped, your patience and determination will earn recognition in due time.

See all 6 and the complete BrazenCareerist article