Often the job application process focuses on nailing your CV and cover letter. In addition to this, we have five small but vital job seeker tips that will help to put you ahead of the competition.
1. Keep your voicemail professional
If you are looking for a new job, chances are a future employer will go through to your voicemail at some point. If you have a voicemail that isn’t professional (e.g., there’s a lot of background noise), or you don’t have one at all, update it as a matter of priority.
Tip: Write out what you are going to say beforehand to ensure that it flows well, record it somewhere quiet and remember to sound happy.
2. Keep your email address simple
It’s never great to receive an email from an applicant applying for a senior professional position and the email address is too complicated or sounds like it was set up when you were a teenager. These email addresses might do the job, but they won’t paint you as an industry professional.
Tip: If you don’t feel your current email is up to scratch, there are various platforms (e.g., Gmail and Outlook) that provide free email addresses. You can also redirect all your emails from your current inbox to ensure you don't miss any important messages or contacts.
3. Keep your response time quick
If you want a job, you need to show it as soon as possible. Getting back to an email or voicemail five days later is not a reflection of someone who wants a job and in today’s competitive market, the position may well be filled by then. It also suggests you may respond to things slowly as an employee too.
Tip: Your response rate should be no longer than 24 hours. If you are caught up, then a quick courtesy email or text stating that you’ve received a message and when you will respond at least shows you can keep people across things.
4. Review your social media
Anyone with your name or email address can easily view your Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and even your TikTok, so you need to remember that what you do on these sites can potentially be viewed by a future or current employer.
Tip: Consider making your profile private and what you post on public forums.
5. Do your homework and get organised
You’ve heard it before “Prior planning prevents… (you know the rest)”. Don’t wait for an interview, start preparing before you even send off your resume.
Before applying, make sure you know exactly what the role is, what the company does, who the hiring manager or recruiter is, where the company is located, the market it operates in, and any key projects they are working on, or products/services offered.
Tip: Where you have applied for multiple roles, get organised for when that call comes in. Jot down the company name, the recruiter or hiring manager and the role details. This will help you to quickly recall which role the call relates to without any awkward pauses.