Tips on how to widen your job search

Sometimes during a job search, you need to take a step back, review your approach and use the results to become more focused.

Here are some ideas to help you concentrate on what’s actually working and how you might benefit from looking at your search from a different angle.

1. Which of these leads are yielding results? And which leads haven’t you tried yet?

  • online job boards
  • recruitment agencies
  • word of mouth/networking
  • newspapers and trade magazines
  • company-specific websites
  • social media

If you have tried these methods, mark how effective they have been on a scale of 1-5. If you haven’t, maybe it’s time you widened your search.

2. Have you considered any of the following in your job search?

  • relocation (either within the UK or abroad)
  • writing to companies you’d like to work for enquiring about future openings
  • boosting your skills by doing voluntary work or an internship
  • taking a pay reduction
  • applying for a different position in a company you want to work for just to get your foot in the door.

Flexibility can often open up a whole new set of opportunities …

3. Now you’re reflecting, ask yourself these questions.

Which is more important, industry or function? Is the company or industry you work in a priority? Or is it the role transferable to other industries?

Are you looking for job security or for a chance to learn and grow?

What do you value in a job? Write a list!

What gives you job satisfaction?

4. Are you learning during your job search? Areas to analyse can include:

  • Specific job applications – which led to an interview and why.
  • Interview preparation – is it thorough enough?
  • Interviews – are there any questions you could have answered better?
  • Motivation – do you congratulate yourself on small achievements?

5. Do you tailor your CV to every job application?

If not, this is the reason you’re finding it hard to get interviews. Employers aren’t looking for a ‘generic’ candidate, they want someone who fits the post.

If you are experiencing instant rejections, maybe it’s time you got some expert CV advice…

By getting The CV Site to review your CV for free today, you are already taking positive steps towards taking a wider view of your job search.

If your CV needs some fine-tuning to focus on specific job applications, let one of our professional writers tailor your skills and experience and take out one of our many packages.

New job seeking trends in 2016

Not only is it highly competitive for job seekers in an overcrowded market nowadays, employers are upping their game and keeping up with the times in order to secure top candidates. Here are some tips on how to get ahead by identifying new methods recruiters are using to seek out the best recruits.

Predictive techniques

Once recruiters have found their ideal candidate, they want to ensure their investment is solid and that their new employee is going to stay the distance.

With a 2015 ADP survey revealing that nearly half (47%) of British employees intend to change jobs in the next three years and research by Investors in People (IIP) revealing that a whopping 60% of UK workers are not happy in their jobs, employers are very aware of the value of loyal staff.

Because of this, recruiters are using predictive techniques such as:

  • In-depth research of references
  • Interview questions with hidden meanings
  • Data-based analysis of CVs
  • Scrutinising LinkedIn profiles and investigating other social media profiles and activity
  • Reliance on referrals.

Good connections within the industry you work in are vital. Research has proved that many companies get up to 50% of their new recruits via networking or employee referrals.

For you as a job seeker, expanding your network of industry-based connections can speed up your search. Ensure your connections know about your strengths and skills. Create industry-specific posts on LinkedIn, join an industry-focused networking group and if you’re looking for a new job – tell people so they know why you will be right for a particular future role.

Experience-led searching

Employers can spot which candidates are high achievers by analysing their CVs, then focusing on traits which have proven successful with previous recruitment drives. Nowadays, they know the attributes high performers have in common and these are key elements in finding future star employees.

For you as a job seeker, it’s worth it to research which traits high-flyers in your industry possess. Talk to current colleagues, ask around and work out what you need to do to become a member of this exclusive club.

Utilising mobile

As more and more people rely on phones and tablets, recruiters have become more mobile-aware with their communication.

As a job seeker, ensure you have a mobile-ready up-to-date copy of your CV on your phone and be prepared to receive texts instead of emails and calls regarding your applications.

Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

With employers depending more on technology, the recruitment process has become more focused, however the downside is it takes longer.

To get anywhere in the ATS application process, job seekers need to invest the time to target their skills and experience for individual roles. If you want to be selected for an interview for a specific job, you need to ensure your CV is tailored towards that role and that role only.

Video

Visuals are taking over. Whether it’s to send a candidate a message, to make a job offer, or to promote the company to potential new employees.

Keep an eye out for videos during your job research, many companies use social media to stream promotional films.

Plus, in the ever-changing world of recruitment don’t be too surprised if you’re asked to make a short video application instead of a written one. If a video is required for an application, meticulously practice, test and get feedback from whoever you can before sending it in.

Oh, and do think about the background. However good you are, if you’ve got a week’s worth of washing up as your backdrop, we can guarantee it won’t impress!

Company culture and likeability

The ‘brand’ and work environment is becoming a more important element for employers. It’s not enough for some companies to just have a product or service, they want their staff to fit into how their company is perceived on the outside. Furthermore, they need their staff to get on with each other and possess the ‘likeability factor’. Who wants to form a business relationship or buy from someone they don’t like or don’t trust?

As a job seeker, it’s important you’re aware of how others see you. Test this as much as you can in your everyday life. How do people respond to you? What changes can you make to become more engaging and charismatic? Having said this, you don’t want to come across as being too overpowering or false. Be yourself, but be interested and friendly in your manner. As far as fitting in with the company culture, the key is research, research, research…

At The CV Site, we only employ CV writers who are up-to-date with the latest recruiting techniques and trends. If you have a job application, they know how to re-write your CV for ATS, to portray you as a high achiever in your field, to tailor you to a specific company’s culture.

The best way to embark on a 2016-focused job search is to take advantage of a FREE CV review from The CV Site. Let our experts give your CV a free assessment now!

Are your references letting you down? Here’s how to get the best out of your referees…

Imagine how devastating it would be to reach the final selection of potential candidates for a job only for your references to let you down at the last hurdle. However, with a little thought, communication and preparation, you can guarantee yourself glowing references that will take you straight past that finishing line.

1. Only ask people who have actually managed, supervised or worked with you. Asking a friend is all well and good, but if they’ve not seen what you’re capable of or your work ethic, how can they prove to a future employer your worth in the workplace?

2. Don’t list referees without asking them first. Let them agree to be your referee. If they aren’t aware they are, they might be taken by surprise and sound hesitant or even forgetful about your skills and experience which will reflect badly on you.

3. Ensure your referrer feels special about you choosing them. Say why you’ve picked them to help you. Tell them you respect their opinion or their experience. Say it’s because they are top of their field. Whatever the reasons, everyone loves a compliment, and this will encourage them to compliment you back…

4. Talk to your referees about any specific positions you are applying for. Tell them why you think you will be good in those roles. Then when approached, they will not only know about the job, but how to sing your praises with that position in mind.

5. Inform your referees about how your future potential employer might contact them. Be it via mail, a phone call, via email or social media e.g. LinkedIn.

6. If a written reference is required, help out your referrers by giving them some guidelines on what you’d like them to say. Whether you send them a list, write them a draft, arrange a meeting to discuss or talk to them on the phone, this way, your referees won’t be starting from scratch. Plus this is your opportunity to remind them of your achievements and qualities (preferably tailored towards the position you are applying for).

7. Finally, always remember to thank the referees who have taken the time to help you out. They have played a big part in getting you the job and besides… you never know when you might need to call on them again…

Of course, before you get to this stage, you need to secure yourself an interview in the first place. If your CV isn’t getting you that foot in the door, you’ve got nothing to lose by taking advantage of a FREE CV review from The CV Site.

Find out more about The CV Site here and choose the package that suits you.

 

Is your job search becoming stale? Five new strategies to generate results…

You may have begun 2016 full of enthusiasm and hope about looking for a job, but here you are in March and you’re still searching, filling in applications and on top of this, coping with rejection. The enthusiasm has been replaced with frustration and the hope with despair.

Just remember, you’re not alone! The key is to keep focused, stay enthused, put the rejections behind you and remind yourself how much you’ve learned and how far you’ve come. But if you think a new approach is needed, here are some pointers to freshen up your search.

1. Target companies instead of specific jobs

Write a list of companies you would ideally like to work for. Whether they are the best companies for your profession, whether they involve less traveling time, whether they are just a great company to work for. Whatever the reason, this will help you pinpoint your search.

Once you’ve compiled your list, do some research on these companies. Are they looking to expand? How do they work? The more knowledge you have the better.

2. Make contact with key personnel

Who does the hiring for your specific type of job in the company? Reaching out to the decision maker directly will mean you are known to them. Whether you contact them by phone, write an email, or reach out via LinkedIn – see if you can schedule in a meeting or phone call. It could be there’s a job going that hasn’t been advertised yet.

3. Get networking

Do you have any LinkedIn connections who work for the company or are linked to people who do? Do you know people in the same industry? Are there any networking events you can attend to build up your network? If you are referred by someone, it will give you a head start prior to interview.

4. Check company website job boards

If you’ve written your list of target companies, then you can aim to keep checking those companies’ website job boards. Often positions are posted there before advertising – and are often filled without the need for a full-blown advertising campaign. Get in there first!

5. Ensure your CV is in tip top condition

It could be your CV that’s been letting you down to date. Does it showcase your achievements and skills in the best possible light? Are you really proving to your preferred companies that you would be an asset in their organisation?

If you’re not sure, The CV Site can help. The CV Site offers a FREE no-obligation CV review, so sit back and let our expert CV writers give you their professional feedback on this small, but vital document.

Who is The CV Site?

Find out more about The CV Site here. We not only offer valuable tips and advice for job success, we can refresh or re-write your CV helping to guarantee you that all-important interview with the company you’d really love to work for.

Good luck!

How to sell yourself without work experience

You’ve finished your education and you are either leaving school, college or University. But how do you sell yourself on a CV that lacks solid work experience?

Well, the first thing to remember, is that you’re not alone. There are thousands of other job applicants who are asking themselves the same question. That’s why you need to stand out, and here’s how to do it.

Make your skills relevant

Think out of the box when it comes to the skills you’ve learned in education. If in your drama course you helped organise a production – think event management, if you’ve auditioned for parts – think pitching business ideas, if you’ve acted on a stage – think business presentations.

You’ve proved you can learn, so prove it on your CV

If spending years in education has taught you one thing, it’s how to learn. With the ever-increasing technical advances businesses face, they need to know their employees can easily adapt to and learn new systems, tools and online trends. Make sure your CV shows you have the skills, experience and aptitude to carry this out.

Leadership

OK – you may or may not have leadership experience on your CV yet, but what about leading yourself? Can you demonstrate how you have developed personally and professionally over time? Ensure you include any training you have undertaken to date and how this has developed you professionally on your CV. Plus, how any hobbies, interests, volunteer work and independent study has developed you develop as a person. This will show employers how resilient, interested and open to new concepts you are.

Be adaptable

At this stage in your career, it’s even more important to tailor your CV to a specific position than ever. How you present a skill to a retailer, should differ to how you present the same skill to a recruiter from a busy corporate office. Just remember, it’s better to present a CV tailored to a job, than just send out something generic. It makes all the difference.

At The CV Site we’re lucky to have some of the best CV writers in the business. They know how to make your CV, however little experience you have, stand out. In fact, you’ll be surprised at how many skills you’ve got that you never even knew about!

The first step is easy. Let us give your current CV a CV Site free CV review, or, if you’ve not written a CV yet, let our experts do the writing for you

Why gaps in your employment history REALLY matter

A fluid CV is a story. It’s the story of your employment history. So if there are gaps, it’s just going to leave a potential recruiter frustrated and confused.

In a recent report by search engine Adzuna, gaps in employment history came second in the results under the ‘Most Common CV Mistakes’ category.

So what do you do if you’ve had a career break?

There are many ways to present, explain and close these gaps, however you may need some professional help to make your CV transparent. The best policy is to be honest, resourceful and enthusiastic about what you’ve been up to.

For example, saying “I was unemployed” can easily be re-phrased to sound like a positive experience by wording it “during this time I took 6 months out to re-evaluate my career and focus my skills for work in the retail industry.”

Remember, it’s also essential you are prepared to answer questions and expand on this if you manage to secure an interview.

Luckily, here at The CV Site, our expert CV writers pick up on any breaks in employment, talk to you about them and advise on how to present them.

In some cases breaks are easier to explain in a covering letter than smack bang in the middle of your CV.

Let The CV Site make these decisions for you. Get started by taking advantage of our free, no-obligation review of your CV today.

The Top 10 CV Spelling Mistakes Made By UK Job Seekers revealed

When thousands of job applicants are fighting it out for just one coveted position, there’s one thing that’s going to speed up the recruiter’s laborious task of dwindling down the mountains of CVs.

Spelling.

Of course the right skills and experience matter, as do impressive achievements that prove an applicant’s suitability. However, if these aren’t matched by an attention for detail i.e. a CV with NO spelling mistakes, you’re just making his/her job easier. It’s likely, it’ll go straight onto the rejection pile.

A survey by Michael Page recently revealed that 100% of the recruiters involved said that having no typos or spelling mistakes on a candidate’s CV was important. Flip the coin, and in the same survey only 92% of job seekers agreed.

In a research report by search engine Adzuna last year, results showed that employers rated misspelled words as top of the most common CV mistakes. In fact, they found that for every three CVs (3,000 were used in the study), at least one of these contained a spelling mistake. In fact a whopping 46% contained two or more spelling errors.

Here’s a checklist of the top ten spelling mistakes they found.

1 Responsibility
2 Liaise
3 University
4 Experience
5 Speciality
6 Communication
7 Achievement
8 Management
9 Environment
10 Successful

When asking who is The CV Site? What does The CV Site do? How can The CV Site help me? There’s one thing The CV Site CAN guarantee.

By getting a CV professionally written by one of our team of experienced recruiters, it certainly won’t be rejected on the basis of spelling!

Check your current CV for spelling errors with a free CV Site CV Review here >>