Each time you apply for an available position, you are usually one of many qualified applicants. It is essential to create a strategy that best shows your qualifications and that would put you above your competition. In this article, we will look through the ways you can improve your ability to get an interview and secure a job offer. 

Follow these seven steps to help you impress the hiring team and secure that dream job of yours:

1. Make Connections in Your Industry


You may find interesting job listings on public career boards or industry websites. However, the popular listings would usually have a lot of candidates. Instead, you can consider making connections within your industry. This is so that you have better chances of getting news on position openings before it gets posted. 

To network effectively, find online communities and local groups that focus solely on your industry. Firstly, you can try to identify people you want to meet such as employees of your chosen companies. Then, you can consider ways you can offer value to your connections. For example, you can try giving a new perspective on an industry trend. 

2. Create a Customised Resume


When you apply for an opening, make sure to take some time to customise your resume for the position. Submitting a resume that responds to the listing’s requirements allows the hiring team to identify your qualifications. When you make it easier for the hiring team to select you as a top candidate, you have a better chance of getting an interview. 

To create a customised resume, you may want to consider only including the experience, education and accomplishments that relate directly to the job listing. For example, if you were to reply for a culinary position, you might want to include experiences you’ve had in the kitchen and specialised dishes you’ve created. 

3. Write an Effective Cover Letter


A cover letter plays an important role in giving the hiring team a good impression of you. Therefore, it is important to customise this accordingly to the job listing. Next, you can consider telling them what aspects of the company you like, qualifications that make you an ideal candidate and the contributions you would make if you took the role. Furthermore, you have to make sure that you have provided adequate details on your job experience. 

At the end of the cover letter, ask the hiring manager regarding the next step in the application process. For example, you can ask the hiring manager if there would be other levels of the interview. 

4. Follow Up with the Hiring Manager


Two weeks after you submit your application and no response is received, make sure to ask for a follow-up from the company. Try emailing or calling the hiring manager to inquire about the current stage of the process and express your continued interest in the position. Consider requesting the hiring manager to keep in contact with you by giving them your details such as your email address or phone number. 

5. Know your Selling Points


Once you’ve advanced to the next stage of the hiring process, you can start preparing for the interview. Identify the main reasons why you are the right candidate for the job. Think about the most effective ways to explain these during your interview.

If you are applying for a management position that requires proof of leadership skills, you can try to explain the achievements you’ve received or what you’ve learned from it. For example, you may have a leadership award from your current company or achieved a goal that proves your teambuilding capabilities. 

6. Practice Common Interview Questions


Before the interview, read through common questions and prepare appropriate answers. By doing so, you are more able to give a better answer when they ask you questions. Also, this step allows you to identify specific examples that you can mention confidently during the interview.

These are a few questions you can prepare yourself beforehand:

  • “How would you describe yourself?” 
  • “What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses?” 
  • “Why do you want to work here?” 
  • “Why should we hire you?”

7. Thank the Hiring Manager


After your interview, always remember to thank the interviewer and hiring manager for their time and consideration. When you do this, you get a final chance to position yourself as a top candidate for the role and encourage the hiring manager to offer you the job.

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