Landing an entry-level tech job isn’t easy. Online job applications are often flooded with dozens or even hundreds of candidates. That’s why we’ve compiled this handy guide to help you stand out from the crowd. Learning a few simple job search techniques can help you differentiate yourself from the masses and secure your dream job.
Job Search Techniques and Why They Matter
The move to digital hiring practices has opened up new possibilities for companies and job searchers alike. Businesses now have access to a much broader talent pool than they had in the past. Meanwhile, it’s never been easier for workers to apply for new jobs. The downside to this increased labor mobility is that companies have a difficult time sorting through the massive pool of applicants.
Navigating stiff competition and impersonal applicant tracking systems represents a considerable hurdle for many qualified candidates. It’s no longer enough to have the right skills and experience for the job. Unless you embrace the right job search techniques, you’re unlikely to land an interview. You can think of the job search process as an arms race. As employers adopt new methods to sort through the stacks of resumes, it’s up to you to adapt your job search techniques to meet the expectations of hiring managers.
The Dos and Don’ts of Job Searching
In this section, we’ll explore a few of the dos and don’ts when it comes to the best job search techniques.
Follow these tips to stand out from the crowd.
Optimize Your Online Presence for Passive Job Searching
Rather than sort through a deluge of resumes, some recruiters and hiring managers have taken to reaching out directly to qualified individuals. Use this job search technique to put yourself on the recruitment radar by maintaining an up-to-date LinkedIn profile that accurately reflects your education, work history, and accomplishments. Also, consider creating a personal portfolio website to show off your personal projects.
Reach out to your network
Networking lets you cut straight to the head of the line. One of the biggest difficulties in the hiring process is judging intangibles like personality fit and work ethic. These don’t always come through in the interview process. To that end, many hiring managers still prefer word-of-mouth strategies to find qualified workers. Leveraging your network is a great job search technique to land you a new job.
Customize your resume and cover letter for each position
Make sure that you’re tailoring your resume and cover letter for each job application. Pick out relevant keywords and phrases from each posting and include them on your resume. This job search technique helps you pass through the company’s job applicant tracking software. You should also rewrite your past duties and accomplishments to dovetail with the job listing. The extra time and effort will pay off as you receive more and more interviews.
Avoid these pitfalls to maximize your chances of landing your dream job.
Take the shotgun approach to job searching
While it might be tempting to take advantage of the easy apply button on LinkedIn, you’re doing yourself a disservice by applying to every job that vaguely relates to your goals. First, you’re dramatically lowering your chances of getting called in for an interview. Employers want to see relevant work and education experience.
However, even if you were to get the job, it probably wouldn’t move you closer to your long-term goals. Career detours often prove expensive in terms of opportunity cost. That’s because you won’t be accruing new on-the-job skills. Ultimately, applying to jobs outside of your wheelhouse is an exercise in futility.
Fail to follow up after the interview
It’s no longer de rigueur to send a handwritten thank-you note post-interview. However, a short and friendly email may tip the scales in your favor. Write an email thanking the interviewer for their time. Briefly reiterate why you believe you’re the best-qualified candidate for the position.
Have a messy digital footprint
Before you begin the job application process, make sure that all your social media profiles are set to private. Hiring managers commonly Google candidates prior to the interview process. An immature or unprofessional online presence can disqualify you from further consideration.
Following these simple job search techniques will help you land that coveted job interview. Don’t leave your job search to chance. Connect with a Pathrise mentor to optimize every facet of your job search. Pathrise provides job seekers with a comprehensive range of services ranging from resume building to mock interviews. Apply to become a Pathrise fellow today!