LinkedIn as a Job Search Tool

linkedin-911794_960_720People are telling you to get on LinkedIn it’ll get you a job. You open a new or existing account, upload a photo of yourself, set up a profile, fill in some sections, and wait for ‘it’ to happen. And wait … and wait … and wait. So what is it you’re doing or haven’t done that needs your attention? How will your profile be found among so many?  The following steps may help.

  • Log into Linkedin and go to the menu at the top of the page
  • See your photo with Me written under it? Click on the drop down arrow
  • Go to Settings & Privacy under Accounts
  • Scroll down to Job seeking Preferences and work through each section shown there

Before you address this section make sure all other details in your LinkedIn profile are up to date and look professional. If you are using LinkedIn as a job search and networking tool, regular maintenance is essential.

Let’s Talk Hair!

Sometimes a Mum or Dad will accompany their VCE son or daughter to a consultation with me as they support them in taking the first steps in their career. Often parents express a belief that their child should have their hair cut or changed to something more traditional as they believe it will go against them in a job interview otherwise. It is something that actually prompts needless friction between child and parent. For the most part, the truth is employers and recruiters are not bothered by a young person’s hair unless it poses a safety or hygiene risk. Other things are far more important in an interview than style or cut. When it comes to hair, the thing to remember is not to fiddle with, or groom it while in the interview.

No mobile phone or email address?

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Have you never owned a mobile phone or acquired an email address?  Are you a person doggedly resisting the technological age?  In terms of applying for jobs in the 21st century what will this say about you, will it impact on your job search outcome? The answer to that question is almost certainly a resounding yes. If your reputation is such that employers are beating a path to your door, you might get away with it … for the rest of us, it’s an enormous risk.

Resumes – Word or pdf Format?

Some debate exists around whether you should submit your resume in word or pdf format when applying online.  My contribution to the debate is, read the job advertisement thoroughly.  A significant number of ads state that your resume should be submitted in word format only.  This is one of a number of costly mistakes people make when applying for jobs.  If you are not submitting your resume in the requested format, not reading all of the material provided, not following the specified application instructions, or not downloading or requesting the position description, you are sabotaging your chances of success.

What do you not do, that you should be doing when applying for jobs?

Your knowledge, skills and abilities … are they competitive?

question-mark-96285_640Wanting to work in a particular job or field?  How do you find out what’s needed and whether your qualifications, skills, qualities and abilities are competitive?

Try reading lots of job advertisements and position descriptions from a range of companies. Talk to others already working in your target field and then come back to yourself and evaluate your existing knowledge, skills and experience.

So how do you go about it? Search for, and read a variety of job advertisements from across the country for the job you want.  Don’t just read local advertisements, as they will only give you a limited view, and you need to know standard requirements for the industry.  Compare position descriptions, how do they differ, how are they the same, what are the common threads across each document?  Talk to people working in the industry, how does their knowledge and experience fit with your research, how did they go about getting their job?  Lastly, explore your own history.  What have you done?  What skills and experience have you gained?  What challenges have you encountered and what are your achievements?  What do you have to offer that the industry wants?

When you have done all those things, ask yourself how you measure up, what you need to do to enhance your chance of success in applying for jobs in your target field.

Are you Resume ready?

question-mark-49958_640Online job sites are a great way for jobseekers to find job vacancies, near and far. Companies, businesses, organisations, large and small advertise vacancies on job sites. Some advertisements include closing dates for applications, some don’t.

What isn’t so great is a noticeable trend in advertisers removing their job vacancies before the closing date or within a few days of advertising. When asked why the advertised vacancy has been removed, the usual response is sufficient applications have been received.

In light of this trend, consider your current resume, that’s if you have one. Would you be remotely Resume ready should a job be advertised that you would like?