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10 ways to stand out and get that job


Female Worker stands out

Welcome to the job-hunting arena, where you will be pitted against 12.7 million Brits, who are actively job hunting each day, on average according to StandOut CV. Now, if you still believe securing a job requires very little effort on your end, then let me share some further eye watering stats.

 

Only 2% of applicants, per job ad, are successful in passing to the first interview stage. Most jobs, at minimum, have two interview stages. On average stage one will see six invitations handed out. At this stage half of the interviewees will fall short of the set mark and be hit with that all dreaded,

 

“Thank you for your time, however…..”

 

Stage two would usually confirm the overall victor, to be offered the job. Usually, the first interview would have already identified the clear favourite, but rest assured, it’s not over till you receive that dreaded email.

 

Still not convinced? Well if I was a betting man the odds I would get of you successfully securing the job you are applying for would be one in five hundred, considering that is number of average applicants per advertised job, for non-managerial roles. Managerial roles, the odds would be one in one hundred.

 

As with all odds, you can proactively take steps to improve them. Below I have highlighted 10 ways you can make yourself stand out and get that job.

 


Resume Tips

1. Professional Resume (Inc. LinkedIn)

 

With Applicant Tracking Software (ATS) systems becoming readily available to all employers, your resume has never been so important. The ATS system effortlessly omits resumes that fail to clearly communicate as to how you are a suitable match for the advertised role.

 

Any company not utilising the ATS system will usually require the hiring manager, or a designated assistant to review the submitted resumes. At larger companies, this can involve designated recruitment teams within the HR shared services department. Now, I don’t know how many of you have ever spent a good portion of time reviewing resumes, but if your someone who lacks motivation and resilience, you quickly get trigger happy with discarding resumes that have basic mistakes. CareerBuilder conducted a survey reporting that 77% of recruiters have noted that typos and poor grammar are considered as dealbreakers.

 

A further 70% of recruiters have also confirmed their reliance on LinkedIn profiles, especially for management and above roles.

 

Tip: If you want to make quick improvements, below I have highlighted 5 quick wins, you can implement today:

  • Aim for your resume to be two pages (three if absolutely required)

  • Focus on positions held within last 10 years

  • Provide clear quantitative examples of responsibilities and achievements

  • Ensure your resume matches your LinkedIn profile

  • Ensure there are no spelling and grammatical errors


Make A Good First Impression GossipPro

2. Interaction

 

A Forbes survey identified that the majority of interviewees have only the first seven seconds to make a strong impression, on average. I would say their claim is ludicrous and clickbait driven, but they are onto something, though seven seconds truly is a stretch of the imagination.

 

Your interviewer will sum you up within the first 5 minutes of meeting you. At this point, they would have already decided, whether or not they like you. Objectivity aside, every single person in this world caries biases. Those biases will see them hire someone closer to their own personality, or one familiar to them. Why? Simple, people are A) very narcissistic and believe they are, as Tina Turner said, “simply the best, better than all the rest”. B) they dislike change and having a personality they are familiar with makes life less complicated.

 

Tip: there is but one way to best these biases, simply act professional in all interactions. By all interactions I mean:

 

  • Phone calls – answer as you would if you were a receptionist working for yourself. So, I would say “Good morning/afternoon Eidolon Chase”

  • Emails – respond in a clear, concise, courteous and timely manner

  • Interview – again be clear, concise, courteous and confident

  • Unorthodox meeting – do not stray from the above, some employers test the subject by holding unorthodox meetings, infamously tagged as the ‘Steve Jobs beer test’

 

3. Interview preparation

 

It is estimated that a little over one quarter of applicants, who successfully progress onto the interview stage, fail to appropriately prepare. Remember reaching this stage, lifts your odds to a reassuring, one in six. Twin Employment’s survey reported that 47% of recruiters said they would reject a candidate who had little, to no, knowledge about the company they are applying to.

 

Over 90% of recruiters confirmed that applicants who fail to provide relative examples would most likely be rejected after stage one interviews. So, it is fair to say, the time you put aside for this stage is undoubtedly critical.

 

“Want to learn how to improve your preparation? Then check out 10 types of interview questions you should prep for, to secure that job"

Always be on Time GossipPro

4. Punctuality

 

It is borderline embarrassing the number of applicants who arrive late to interviews. Just know that for nearly 96% of interviewers this is inexcusable. Unless it was an emergency, at which point you would have notified the interviewer ahead of time, or you were unable to, and had valid reasoning, rest assured your chances are slim to none.


Your punctuality displays

A) Your organisational skills

B) Time-management skills and most importantly

C) your reliability

 

Tip: In order to ensure you avoid any possibility of being late, consider the following:

  • Leave well ahead of time – consider getting to the destination at least 30 minutes earlier

  • Research the location, via google maps, ahead of time to ensure you know exactly where you are going

  • Ensure you have two routes planned for your journey, just in case route one faces problems

  • If all the above still leaves you with the possibility that you may be a little late, message the interviewer straight away and let them know

 

5. Presentation

 

Your research into the company should permit you to easily determine what their preferred dress code is. Ensure you match it.


Inc reported that 71% of employers wouldn’t hire someone who doesn’t follow the appropriate dress code.

 

If you take the ‘I dress how I want, they cannot discriminate against me’ stance then don’t bother showing up because I guarantee you, you will not progress. Don’t believe all the hype you hear from rebellious and anti-productivity influencers; they are simply chasing views and clicks. Away from cameras you will find them stringently following what I have advised above.


92% of managers prefer soft over hard skills

6. Demonstrate your skills

 

By this I simply mean, show them, through your answers, presentation, communication and interaction who they are hiring. Your soft skills have never been so important. It is now where you should proudly showcase your excellence.

 

According to a LinkedIn survey, 92% of talent professionals and hiring managers have claimed that soft skills matter as much, if not more so, than hard skills. The hiring manager wants to know if you will help positively impact the team, only helping to further their own cause.

 

Tip: when answering interview questions, provide clear examples showcasing your soft skills, abilities and capabilities.

 

7. Effective Communication

 

Effective communication is the single most important skill anyone can possess. 86% of employees believe ineffective communication is the root cause of workplace failures, according to Economist Intelligence Unit.

 

Focus less than perfection and more on clearly and confidently communicating with the interviewer. Jobspin noted that 39% of candidates leave a bad impression, with the interviewer, due to their overall lack of confidence, voice quality and failure to smile.

 

If you suffer from performance anxiety, I recommend keeping your responses concise and focus more on delivery. Communicating with a smile and confidence goes a lot further then stringing together long sentences with a poker face and nervous tone.

 

8. Authenticity

 

Needless to say, the job securing process is daunting enough for most, with a range of anxieties awaiting you, whether it be interview anxiety, performance anxiety or insecurities. Remaining authentic will help minimise the sea of emotions you will endure. Do not add unnecessary fears, by lying on your resume. This will needlessly ramp up the emotions you feal during the interview process, especially if your left facing an interviewer who really knows their industry inside out.

 

Instead focus on what you have achieved so far and how you will be effectively communicating that to the interviewer. The STAR technique is the most famous, so instead of being disingenuous, maybe consider the alternative.


Engaged Employee versus Disengaged GossipPro

9. Engaged

 

67% of recruiters feel that eye contact is crucial to making a good impression, according to a JobSpin survey. Over 50% would class a confident handshake as another good impression. As ancient as this sounds, these principles have long been key in affirming your confidence with all who you meet over time.

 

Remain present in your conversation, with the interviewer, listen to their responses and engage with them. This will increase your chance of turning the interview process into more of a conversation, which I can almost guarantee will help immensely in securing that desired role.

 

Tip: For the lovely yellow personalities out there

It is imperative you practice remaining engaged in the conversation before stepping foot into that interview room. Attempt practice sessions with trusted friends or family and ensure they ask you unexpected questions to test your engagement. This will help you identify areas of improvement.  

 

10. Closure

 

Remember the process is not over till you either get offered the job or receive that dreaded email. Now, should you stand victorious at the end, then congratulations. But it is not over just yet. You will need to review your offer, contracts and other terms and conditions before responding to the interviewer.

 

According to Field of Talent, 96% of candidates accept their first offer. In line with this stat a survey completed by Gartner noted that 60% of candidates who recently accepted a job offer, would make the same choice again. Now using both percentages as a base for a review, 36% would reconsider the agreed terms from their first offer.

 

It is imperative you accept what is right for you, without settling or letting your emotions get the best of you, only to regret it later or far worse declining the offer after accepting it. Which will completely ruin your credibility. If you have terms you would like to further discuss, then communicate these immediately with the hiring manager. Voice your concerns confidently and clearly and see what can be done. If you have any hard ‘passes’ then don’t beat around the bush and highlight them. Depending on what can and cannot be done, you will need to make a decision. Ensure you do so in a timely fashion. Remember, always remain professional.


Conclusion

 

All job seekers face unnerving odds when competing in the jobs market arena. But being proactive and utilising the steps above will rapidly help you gain favourable odds. Securing a job requires dedication and commitment to continuously improving. The average job seeker takes 1-5 months to secure a job, so having resilience is a complete necessity. Do not give in and do not give up, keep a record of lessons learned and ensure you make the required changes to keep improving your overall odds.

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