If you're looking for a job, there's a lot to think about in today's world -- like the unemployment rate and competition. The key to a successful job search, however, is to not get distracted thinking about things you cannot control. Candidates need to be very focused on how to connect with the right hiring companies and do so effectively. A candidate needs to understand -- and do -- what it takes to make a memorable, positive impression at every step along the way.
In traditional hiring processes, it all starts with a well-written resume and a job search action plan. To be considered, candidates first have to be found. So, they need to post resumes on popular sites to be searchable and apply to positons online on a regular basis. And, candidates need well-written resumes, crafted with the keywords that are common search terms for their fields.
Clearly, the Internet has shifted how candidates go about the job search and how employers find potential hires. Job seekers today have to learn to search and apply for jobs online. Most are aware of and using popular job-related sites. Many use social media such as Facebook and LinkedIn to help in their search. Yet, learning how to use the fundamental online tools is not enough. It just levels the playing field. The challenge is how to stand out in the sea of applicants that flood employers for many positions.
Legendary interviewer Larry King recently outlined what it takes to be memorable and successful as a candidate in the video. He gives some great tips that can help candidates tackle both their resumes and interviews. I encourage anyone looking for work to checkout his video -- and I will build on his advice with some best practices.
Starting with the resume, Larry guides candidates on how to best present themselves by being honest and direct, as well as articulating why they'd be the best suited for the job. Take a fresh look at your resume. Is the length and language appropriate? Is it 1-2 well-written pages clearly articulating what you've done that ties directly to responsibilities of the jobs that are suited for you? Is it truthful about your experience and education? Does it represent why you'd be best suited for the job? Is it memorable, with important facts about accomplishments that would stand out to a recruiter and hiring manager?
You finally get that interview. What's next?
You know the competition is tough and you've got one shot - one opportunity to make a good impression. You've interviewed before, so you know generally what to expect. Then you realize you've been invited to do a new type of interview using video! What do you do?
There's no need to worry! More and more employers are embracing this latest innovation in hiring -- digital interviewing! If you haven't done a video interview yet, it is only a matter of time. The good news is that going digital is easy and it makes the process better for employers and candidates! There's no need to worry about coordinating interviews. The process is much faster for employers so they can tell you sooner where you stand. There's no more wasted time having to answer the same questions over and over for different interviewers at the same company. And, candidates all are asked the same questions in the same order, so everyone has the same opportunity to present their best!
How do you prepare for a digital interview and do well?
Referring back to Larry King's words of wisdom, begin by thinking about the job you want and what you want to say about yourself in a direct, concise way. Be honest. As importantly, be memorable. How? Tell your story and show why you are best suited for the job. When you answer a question, give examples and talk about accomplishments. Don't ramble on and on. Do give enough information to answer the question and leave the interviewer with a memorable story about what you have done or learned that makes you the best fit!
Consider your appearance. Dress professionally and interview where the setting is appropriate. Make sure children and family members do not interrupt your interview!
And, practice. Think about typical questions for the type of job you're seeking and prepare for what you'd like to point out. Look at career sites and other online resources to prepare yourself. Check out the company online. What seems to be important to them and how do you fit what they're looking for in people they hire? How will you fold those characteristics that make you a good fit into your responses and what examples will you give?
Don't memorize word-for-word, read or recite responses. If you practice answering - and even role play - you'll get comfortable with how to interview and the replies will come naturally. Try to be yourself and relaxed, while being appropriate for an interview in your language and your posture.
Finally, look at it as a growth experience! You'll be better at interviewing after each one you do. Learn and practice for the next one! And, if you're lucky enough to interview with a company that's gone digital, you already know you're interviewing with a company that's ahead of the game. Embrace it and enjoy the experience! Digital interviews are fun and easy -- as easy as video chat with a friend! They're even better than a face-to-face interview and without all the hassles!
You can follow Chip on Twitter @cluman