Thursday, October 11, 2012

Are You Making One of These 3 Critical Job Search Errors?

You have a great resume, you have purchased the perfect interview suit, and you have practiced all your interview responses. You are ready and your job search is foolproof, right? Not so fast! If you are making one of these three errors, you just may be sabotaging your own success.

Failure to Add Networking to Your Job Search
You already know that your applications are all made online - usually through a company's website or an online job search engine. However, if your only means of looking for open jobs is surfing the web for openings, you are missing out.

I spoke recently to a global recruiter that told me 80% of the positions she fills are never even posted. She searches LinkedIn, asks her existing staff for referrals, and reaches out to her network to find candidates before she even considers posting a job. Don't discount networking - both social networking and in-person networking - as a critical factor in your job search success.

Failure to Use a Cover Letter
The cover letter is a professional introduction to the resume and is still expected by hiring managers and human resources professionals. The cover letter will most likely not make or break whether you get an interview. However, not sending a cover letter is definitely a strike against you.

Human Resources may not read the cover letter during the screening process. However, they will pass your letter along to the hiring manager who uses this tool to get to know a little about you, your personality, and communication style before the interview.

Failure to Focus Your Search
There is no such thing as an effective generic resume. In order to do its job well, the resume must be focused to a specific job, industry, and company. Don't make the HR person work to see how you will fit in their company. Chances are, if you don't make your targeted presentation of how you fit in within the top third of the resume, you will never even get close to an interview.

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