This is a guest post by Robyn Melhuish.
You want to look for a new job, but you can’t bring yourself to do it — you’re dreading the long and frustrating process. Just the thought of updating your resume makes you want to curl up in the corner of your office and hold out until the decorator writes you off with the old wall paper.
But the job search doesn’t have to be a long-drawn nightmare. To find a new job faster, you simply need to amaze potential employers right out of the starting gate. And it only takes a little extra work to get ahead of the competition.
Here are some data-backed strategies to conduct the best job search and find a new job fast:
For the best job search, you need to set yourself apart from the competition. And to do that, you need to write more than a cover letter. According to a report conducted by Burning Glass, writing and communication skills are among the top baseline skills employers need but struggle to find, across a variety of occupations.
Before you embark on your job search, get writing to showcase your communication skills and industry knowledge. Start a blog where you discuss industry topics, and include the link in your social media profiles and application materials.
If blogging isn’t for you, prepare a sample business proposal, pitch, client letter, or other relevant writing sample to share with your resume or in an interview. This extra step shows employers that you have drive, motivation and communication skills that are hard to find.
Build a social media presence
You’ve heard it before — social media can help or hurt your job search. But if you think hiding behind privacy settings is the answer, think again. A 2015 CareerBuilder survey found that 35 percent of employers would be less likely to hire a candidate they can’t find online.
In addition, in the 2015 Jobvite Recruiter Nation survey, 92 percent of recruiters said they are turning to more and more social media platforms as tools for recruiting talent, while 56 percent said they find their best candidates through social and professional networks.
Use social media to showcase your knowledge, professionalism, and thoughts on current events and industry happenings. Make contacts with colleagues and recruiters from dream companies to get an “in.”
The best job search strategy combines the social search with the job board search. For example, find available jobs on job boards, and then use social media to find a personal connection you can reach out to, to land the job.
Think accomplishments, not goals
The traditional resume positions your goals front and center. But do employers read these statements? Do they care?
Probably not. The truth is, 68 percent of hiring managers spend less than two minutes reviewing resumes, a 2014 survey conducted by CareerBuilder found. In that short window of time, they’re reading your experience, not your goals. After all, the Jobvite survey found that 87 percent of recruiters say previous job experience is very important.
For the best job search results, ditch the outdated objective statement and lead with your top accomplishments instead. Employers want to know what you’ve done in the past and how you can use that experience to benefit them.
In the same CareerBuilder survey, 52 percent of employers said they would like to see the word “achieved” on resumes. Lead with your achievements to break through the resume round and get an interview.
Cultural fit is becoming more and more important to recruiters in the talent search and to job seekers in the job search. Employers want employees with similar values and vice versa. But before meeting with a potential employer in the interview, they have no way to get a sense of a candidate’s personality.
Volunteering can change that. In fact, a survey conducted by the Corporation for National and Community Service found that individuals who volunteered had a 27 percent higher likelihood of being employed than non-volunteers. Volunteering can give employers insight into your character, while building skills, gaining experience and networking.
Find a cause you care about and volunteer. If you already volunteer, include the experience on your resume and post about your experiences on social media — 76 percent of recruiters surveyed by Jobvite view social media posts about volunteer, professional, or social engagement work positively.
The job search can seem like a never-ending marathon, but you can take steps to speed up the process. For the best job search possible, take the time to go above and beyond the typical candidate and wow potential employers.
About the guest post author:
Robyn Melhuish is the Communications Manager at MedReps.com, a job board which gives members access to the most sought after medical sales jobs and pharmaceutical sales jobs on the Web. Connect with Robyn and MedReps.com on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.