Applying for a job and hoping to get called is not the only way to find work. In today’s competitive and network-driven job market, very few people can simply submit an application, receive an invitation to schedule an interview, and land a job.

Unfortunately, things aren’t quite that easy these days. To help them stand out, the most successful job seekers employ a variety of different methods, ranging from developing a social presence to researching an organisation and tailoring your applications to specific companies or industries.

To speed up your job search and land a great job, reach out and establish connections with people who can help you, write a CV that paints you in the best possible light and lets you stand out from the crowd, and master the art of interviewing. Here are a few of the best tips to keep in mind when job hunting:

Don’t Be Afraid to Talk About Yourself

A job application or interview is no time for modesty; you’re trying to sell yourself to a company by showing them you’re worth hiring. The recruiter, hiring manager, HR representative, etc., want to know about your strengths, skillset and previous experience. Mention everything you think makes you the right fit for the role, whether it’s certifications, work experience, or even volunteer experience, if relevant.

You don’t need to over-embellish but measuring your accomplishments in lofty yet sensible terms isn’t an unattractive trait. Don’t confuse confidence with arrogance; you can only rely on yourself to boast about your accomplishments on a job application or in an interview.

If there ever was an appropriate time to “puff yourself up”, it’s when you’re applying for a position with your dream company.

Research Your Potential Employer

When discussing career opportunities with employers, you should give them the impression that you’re familiar with their company and the industry they’re in. You must also demonstrate how your qualifications and expertise make you an excellent fit for their company.

Before filling out a job application or interviewing, figure out who and what companies are looking for by analyzing their ads, such as this Miami New Times posting on Lensa:

What do you believe the company’s top priorities are? Or the values of the company?

What role do you envision yourself playing there? How many people do they employ? Is the company expanding or shrinking?

Researching a company before you pull the trigger on a job offer takes time, but it is always worth it. There are multitudes of online resources that can help you make an informed decision about a potential employer. Using job boards like Jooble can also help your research.

Have clear compensation expectations, but be willing to be flexible.

Do your research ahead of time to determine the fair market value of the role you’re applying for. You can find up-to-date job rates on sites like LinkedIn, Glassdoor, and SEEK. It’s important to remember that most organizations have salary ranges for specific positions and will usually offer a salary in the middle of the range at first. From there, you can counter the offer with a higher number, but make sure you’re willing to back your counteroffer up with good reasons as to why you believe you’re worth that amount. Read up on how to tactfully counter a compensation offer in preparation for your interview.

You should also let the recruiter know upfront that you’re willing to negotiate for a given position. However, you must not adjust your wage expectations after accepting a job offer.

Write A Killer CV

Writing a new CV might seem intimidating, but approaching it with an open and critical mind will help your writing. Examine your CV objectively and consider whether you would hire yourself if it landed on your desk.

Check if you’ve made any typical CV mistakes and rectify them as part of the process of critically analysing your CV.

Your CV is there to get you an interview, and the interview is there to get you a job. Remember that the individual reading your CV may not be an expert in the field you’re applying for, so make sure your main talents and experience are evident to non-experts.

Don’t worry if you didn’t mention everything in your CV and resume because the interview will allow you the opportunity to elaborate. You can include some more specific sub-points or ‘hooks’ that suggest further depth so the interviewer will have something to ask about when you finally meet. Be sure to put some thought into how you’ll respond to those hooks ahead of time to avoid feeling put on the spot.

Conclusion

Job hunting can seem daunting and may take weeks or months to complete. Even the most upbeat and optimistic of us might become discouraged as a result of this.

However, we must recognise that job hunting is a skill, and, like any other skill, there are always steps we can take to improve, and there are plenty of resources available for us to achieve that end. Whether you are preparing to start a new job search or you’re just looking to restructure or improve your current efforts, adding these tips to your strategy is a surefire way to see improvements.

About the Author

Alex has been covering the workplace and education spaces for the last five years and is passionate about skills and professional development. When he is not researching and writing an upcoming article, he is probably on his bike or walking his dogs