In the busy job market, it’s a challenge to stand out. Getting noticed by recruiters is hard, but it’s a great way to ensure you are considered for the best roles. We know that knowing what to do and what to say can be such an overwhelming task, but it’s so important to keep on top of
The role of the recruiter is a tough one. It’s their job to find candidates who hold the correct professional and educational qualifications for the role. They then must figure out which of them will also be a good fit for that particular workplace. When you’ve simply got a CV and covering letter to go on, that’s no mean feat.
So how can you ensure that you stand out to recruiters? The best thing to do is to make their job easier by doing the simple things right.
A well-written cover letter
This is your chance to explain a little more about what you might bring to the role. What sets you apart from other candidates? How is this beneficial to the company? Do your research and find out as much about your would-be employer as possible. What is important to them and their business? What relevant skills and interests do you have that could benefit them? Your cover letter should sell you as the whole package: a person of talent, quality and with something new to bring to the table.
A recruiter will be looking for reassurance that you are the right fit for the role. Showcase your personality and attributes, proving that you’ll be a great fit for their company culture.
We’ve written a blog post on how to smash a cover letter, so check it out for more in-depth tips.
A compelling CV
The perfect CV is two pages long and contains no spelling or grammar mistakes. There is no excuse for not adhering to these basic requirements. Think about how you will present your work and education history. These must demonstrate your suitability to this role. If you’ve been working a while and have held a few jobs, show them your most impressive and notable accomplishments. If it looks like you are going to run out of space, consider which roles might be least relevant and can be left out.
Make it simple for the recruiter by including only your relevant experiences and roles. No-one wants to hear about your paper round when you were 12 if you’re applying for a top-level management position. At best this is unnecessary and at worst it looks lazy and unprofessional.
Misleading the recruiter won’t do you any favours either. Squeezing your old roles to fit responsibilities for the new role isn’t going to impress anyone. There’s a difference between likening your call centre job to retail and your job on a farm to a job in an office.
You might be a team player who enjoys socialising or going to the cinema. However, it doesn’t really tell the recruiter anything. Don’t waste space with stock phrases. Instead, consider bringing your personality and something different to this space. Be memorable, honest and interesting.
A great way to do this is adding hobbies and interests to your CV. Making yourself a more interesting and hireable person through volunteering, clubs and sports teams looks great and will translate into employable skills. As a bonus, the recruiter will be able to see what a team player you are. You can read our blog on turning hobbies and interests into employable traits for more information on how to write about your activities in a skill-based format.
Speak for yourself
If you apply for a role and don’t hear back from the recruiter about your application, chase it up by getting in touch. This shows you care about the application, you are keen to get an interview and that their opinion matter to you. It’s also a good chance to get feedback on how you can improve next time.
Keeping yourself at the forefront of a recruiter’s mind is the key. Following up with them and being pro-active in contacting the right people can be a game changer. Even if you’re not successful in one application, you’ll be ahead of the game when a similar role crops up.