Employers are receiving hundreds of applications by highly qualified individuals for jobs that pay only a few dollars above minimum wage. When a really great job comes along that is the dream job for many, great pay, benefits, and good working environment; the number of applicants increases. In what appear to be desperate times, standing out from the crowd is essential, yet getting noticed is not easy. Here are a few tips to show hiring managers you’re the one who has exactly what they’re looking for to fill their empty position.
First begin with your resume. What do you do? What was the title of the last job you held? Not all job titles explain exactly what their duties are, such as the Regional Operations Manager. This job can have a number of different duties from company to company. Some organizations will not have the title in their corporation. If you’re not the Chief Financial Officer, clearly define your last role…
The language in your resume will help you stand out from the crowd. Use power words for whatever you accomplished at your last job. This is what you bring to the table for the new company. For instance, did you help new employees understand their job and were you the one who brought them up to speed? If so, you were good at “training people.” This is a transferrable skill meaning: developing, coaching, counseling, motivating, and more.
Second, in order for your resume to stand out from the stack of others on the hiring manager’s desk, your cover letter needs to be stellar. Use the same type of power words in the cover letter but keep it short. You want to lead their attention to the resume but you need to give them enough bait to wet their appetite. Tell them you “increased profits by 68% with the implementation of an innovative system to improve efficiency” in your last department. This is just enough to make them want to learn more about you. Employers like to see real numbers of the differences you made in your last positions. Numbers sell products and people.
Last, if you get an interview as soon as you leave, put a hand written or well typed note in the mail to the person with whom you spoke. Not enough applicants are doing this today and it really stands out when you do it. Too many people are substituting email with postal mail and it doesn’t have the same impact as a tangible letter. If you want to stand out, do it the old fashioned way, with manners! Thank them for their time in writing.