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Looking for a new job is not a walk in the park. It takes time and patience! Give yourself the best chance by recognizing some of the most common mistakes jobseekers make in the job hunt and make sure you don’t commit these yourself!
Never, ever, ‘wing it’
The biggest mistake that a candidate can make is thinking that they can ‘wing’ an interview. Your interviewer will look straight through this and know instantly that you have not done your research! Therefore, it’s essential you take the time to prepare for your interview. Your recruiter will advise you of your interviewers’ name, the company website and may even explain the format of the interview. Ensure you use this information, but also take the time to conduct your own research. An interview is your foot in the door, a golden opportunity. Never waste it!
Avoid the fuss
By being too choosy when job hunting, you may miss out on an excellent job opportunity. You may find that by making high demands from your recruiter, you may be jeopardising great options. Apply for roles which you feel you could excel at, ones which you have relevant experience to. If you apply for a role which is out of your depth, you may just end up disappointed later on down the line. Never exaggerate your skill set. Be honest and show your interviewers and recruiters that you are keen to learn and broaden your skills.
Attention to detail
You may need to fill out an application form for the position, or you may just be required to hand in your CV. Either way, attention to detail is critical. Take the time to go through your application and/or CV with a fine-toothed comb. Look for spelling mistakes and grammatical errors. When creating your CV, make sure it is aesthetically appealing and clear. Make the information snappy and easy to read. The last thing you want is to lose out on an interview because your interviewer got bored reading your CV!
Tailor made CVs and documents
Never, ever, submit the same CV and cover letter to the same job. Your recruiter and interviewer will want to know why you fit the job. You will need to assess the job spec and take the time to focus on where you could excel in the role. Put points on your CV about your relevant experience and explain why you are the person that the employer NEEDS to hire. Remember, your CV is an advert for yourself, not an autobiography.
Contact details are absolutely crucial on a CV. You need to be contactable by your recruiter and employer!
During your job search, you may have come across a few setbacks – do not let these get you down. Learn from your mistakes and take the time to grow on these points. Negativity isn’t attractive to a potential employer – they’ll be looking for someone positive! So no matter the rejection, dust yourself off and try again.
If you have had a negative experience in your previous work place, do try to keep this to yourself. Your interview does not want someone who appears mean-spirited joining them. They will want a resilient character who does not take things to heart.
Social media and the Internet
Take the time to Google yourself. What comes up? Is there something which could damage your chances of getting your dream job? Does your Facebook page come up showing what you got up to last weekend? Think about what you are putting online. Make your social media pages private. Change your profile picture to a smart and professional image of yourself. And hide those dreaded tagged photos!
Be careful with what you are tweeting about. Try to avoid talking about subjects which may offend others. Avoid swearing and having negative attitudes towards others. Perhaps consider creating social profiles for professional use and use these to post about subjects you would actually want the interviewer to see! Try to keep your LinkedIn profile up to date and use this tool to your advantage. Look up your interviewers on LinkedIn when conducting your research.
Keep it professional
Remember, when you are interviewing, you need to keep it professional. As soon as you walk in to the office, ensure you behave professionally. Your interview starts now. Speak clearly and avoid using any slang terms or swear words.
Plan your interview outfit. Dress immaculately. Make sure your outfit is washed and ironed prior to your interview. Dressing inappropriately could jeopardise your chances of securing your perfect job. Ladies, keep your make up to a minimum and tie your hair back to ensure you avoid distractions in your interview. Gentlemen, ensure your facial hair is neat and hair brushed. Keep your shoulders back and listen to your interviewer.
Think about your email address, does it need an update? Perhaps you should create an email address purely for recruitment use. An email address that you created whilst in secondary school may not be suitable for job applications! Remember to check your emails often. A recruiter may have contacted you in regards to an incredible job, but if you fail to check your emails regularly, you may miss out on your dream role.