Interview Tips | Improve Your Job Search And Get An Interview

Job hunting can be almost a full-time job in itself, with countless hours spent perfecting your CV, searching job sites and applying for roles.

It can be a stressful time, made even harder when you don’t hear back about the role you were so excited about. People often refer to job searching as a ‘number’s game’ –but if all of your job applications aren’t adding up to any actual interviews, you need to step back and figure out what could be holding you back. 

Sometimes it’s hard to find out exactly what’s going wrong –there may be factors simply out of your control, such as surges in applications at certain times in the year that mean recruiters are inundated with keen and capable candidates to choose from. But there are several steps you can take to give yourself the best chance of getting noticed. We’ve got four tips to help make your job hunt a success and improve your chances of landing an interview for your chosen role.

  1. Re-evaluate your goals
    Ask yourself: what do you want from your career? Where do you see yourself in five years’ time? How is the industry changing? Reassessing your career objectives, along with changes in your chosen job sector,can help keep you focussed on your job search or highlight other options you should consider, such as further training.Mapping out your career as a whole and thinking long-term rather than just the role you’re applying for right now could highlight a skills gap which is holding you back from progressing. Why not look into training courses or even placement opportunities that will help you gain the work experience and skills you’re going to need?The investment in upskilling could make all the difference when applying roles again.

  2. Critique yourself
    Consider how you’re presenting yourself to potential employers and look for any areas to improve.Is your CV up-to-date, full of accurate, relevant information and free from errors? If you think your CV needs some work, check out our article ‘Updating Your CV | CV Formats And What To Include in 2019’. Have you written a tailored, persuasive cover letter to accompany your CV and application? This shows effort, professionalism and your interest in the role. Your cover letter should summarise your key skills and experience; essentially letting the recruiter know why you’re a great fit for the job. A compelling cover letter and well-structured CV can be the key to getting invited for an interview.

    Don’t forget your online presence. Is your LinkedIn profile up to date, with an impactful headline and a professional photo? Read our ten tips on improving your LinkedIn profile here. It’s worth tidying up your other social accounts too–43% of recruiters said they’ve eliminated an applicant from their shortlist based on their social media activity and online reputation, so don’t let this cost you an interview. Check your content, the pages you follow,and posts you have liked and commented on –remove anything that doesn’t match your reputation and image, and tighten up your privacy settings so that they are in line with what you’re comfortable sharing

  3. Find your USP
    A USP, or ‘unique selling proposition’, is the feature which sets something apart from its competition. Your USP is what distinguishes you from other candidates and makes people want you on their team. If you’re not sure what yours is, try asking friends and family –it could be that you’re a solid starter-finisher, a creative problem solver, or an innovative thinker. You might be a natural networker, great at building relationships with colleagues and clients. Your USP should be within a work context and demonstrate why you’d be an asset toa potential employer. 

    If you’re still struggling to identify your USP, try working backwards: analyse the person specifications for the roles you’re interested in and determine which of the key attributes you excel at. Once you have your USP, build your ‘brand’ around it. This can be a theme that runs throughout your professional profiles, your CV and cover letter, along with your interview responses.

  4. Streamline your job search
    Refocus your job hunt so that you’re going for the most suitable opportunities and not wasting time applying for irrelevant roles. When it comes to job searches, a scattergun approach doesn’t really work –it might feel like you’re maximising your chances by applying for practically every vacancy you see, but unless your skillset and experiences matches what they’re looking for, you could be wasting time on jobs that just aren’t for you.

    Make a list of companies you’d love to work for and do your research. What are their strengths? What is challenging them and their industry? Are there any significant changes (such government legislation)coming in?  Use your cover letter and application to demonstrate industry knowledge and a genuine interest in the company in your job application –you’ll stand a better chance of being offered an interview.

    If you’re finding it hard going it alone and can’t seem to find the right roles, consider connecting with a recruiter to give you a helping hand –they can save you time by doing the legwork for you and matching your skillset with suitable jobs. Recruiters can also provide interview tips and CV guidance so that you make a great impression with employers.Tapping into their network can also give you access to undisclosed roles that you wouldn’t find on job boards, and even if you don’t get shortlisted for one role, they’ll keep you in mind for other opportunities. Read our full article ‘Why Work With A Recruiter?’ here.

If you need help updating your CV or to find out about our latest roles, contact your local Adecco branch and connect with a recruiter today!

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