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Why Business Cards are Still Important in Todayís Job Search Print E-mail

While there has been a sharp rise in the number of apps claiming to allow users to make and send “virtual” business cards, there is still a large demand for the small rectangular pieces of paper that have been a staple of business for centuries. Today, business cards are more than a way to give your address and phone number to a business contact or potential client, they’re part of your image. A good business card today is part of a person or company’s advertising message. Many people prefer to think of it more as a flyer than the traditional business card. Cards can and should be personalized to convey the image that you or your business creates. Because of this, many companies or individuals use full-color cards that show images of the company’s or individual’s work.

For example, many people in creative industries have ditched the boring white business card with their contact information stamped onto it in favor of cards that showcase their latest projects. A graphic artist may choose to cover his or her card with examples of their work, essentially creating a mini-portfolio that they can give to anyone who is interested in hiring their services. Unfortunately, some people do not see the value in attaching a business card along with their correspondence. While there are several computer programs that can send contact information to new business contacts, a business card can actually help someone make those contacts. Attaching a business card to bids for work or passing out cards at trade fairs allows a professional to get their most critical information in the hands of people that they otherwise would struggle to meet.

People who are looking for a new job definitely need to create their own business cards. Think carefully about the design of the card. Rather than making a plain card with your contact information, use the card as a way to present yourself as an expert or consultant who is looking for a new client rather than just another job seeker. Some people choose to list their skills or work experience on the back of the card and/or use the design of the card to show their previous work. Think of the business card as a way to highlight how you could benefit the companies you’re applying to, rather than just giving them information about you.

If you are looking for a job, make sure you always have some of these cards in your wallet. While it is definitely awkward to hand out your resume at a backyard barbecue or church function, giving your business card away is a socially acceptable way of making sure the people you meet have a way to contact you. Business cards are also a lot easier to carry and more conversational to give out than a resume, making them a great tool for business meet and greets.

 
5 Killer Mistakes Made During Phone Interviews Print E-mail

As hiring managers receive thousands of applications in their quest to fill one job position, you’ll find that they begin to use phone interviews as a way to narrow down the applicant pool. While most job seekers may not be too familiar with the art of the phone interview, there are 5 things you have to avoid in order to better your chances of success.

Outside of your home

A phone interview should be done from a place you feel the most comfortable. Therefore, it is strongly recommended you handle a phone interview from the comfort of your own home. Choosing a nice, quiet place in your home will help you feel more relaxed. As a result, you’ll be able to speak in a calmer and clearer tone than the tone you would have in a mall or any other frantic environment.  Keep the distractions to a minimum so that surprises do not occur.

Failure to utilize your resources

The best thing about the phone interview is the fact that it’s a phone interview! Print out your resume for easy reference and place it in front of you. It may also be a good idea to print out the qualifications of the job so that you can better explain how you are best suited for the position. A phone interview allows you to take your interview preparation to a whole new level. Swing the situation in your favor by taken advantage of your resources.

Not answering the question

Think about the questions being asked and stay on topic. Hiring managers can lose interest in your candidacy if you can’t answer the questions being asked. Prepare for your interview by going over questions you think the interviewer will bring up. Preparation is key. If you fail to prepare, then you are preparing to fail. Take a deep breath and confidently provide a relevant response. If you are uncertain of what’s being asked, state that. Make sure you fully understand the question being asked so you can provide a complete and relevant answer.  

Failure to take notes or ask questions

Make sure to listen carefully and to jot down important information. Ask appropriate interview questions and make sure to signal your interest to begin working by asking where the company is in the hiring process. Take key points from the interview and use them as reasoning in your follow-up as to why you are a great fit for the position.

Failure to follow-up

You must follow-up! Since you should be home during the phone interview, there is no reason why you shouldn’t send a thank you e-mail once the interview concludes. In your e-mail, thank the interviewer for the wonderful opportunity, and express how eager you are to meet him/her face-to-face. Remember, following-up on any interview is an absolute must. Use your notes to craft a custom message that will convince the employer that bringing you in for a face-to-face interview is a necessity.

 
4 Ways to Get Your Resume Thrown Out Print E-mail

Have you recently applied to a job posting where you were confident that you met all of the qualifications for the position, but have not yet heard a response back from the company? If so, your resume may not have reached the hands of an HR representative. Getting your resume in front of a hiring manager is a difficult task. If your resume never reaches these people, your chances of getting the job are slim to none. It would be great if we could get into the heads of recruiters and find out what they are thinking when he or she looks over your resume. However, one thing for certain is that your resume needs to be current and stand out from the thousands of other applicants who are competing for the same position. Here are some effective tips that you can use in order to avoid getting your resume trashed:

1.       Misspellings or Grammatical Errors

While job seekers are aware that grammatical errors and misspelled words can harm the effectiveness of a resume, there are still a good number of people who send out resumes that are saturated with careless grammatical mistakes. With the help of recent technology, spell check, and expert resume writing services, these simple spelling and grammatical errors should be a thing of the past! Make sure you proofread your resume multiple times. If you’re still unsure of your resume’s strength, send it to GetInterviews for a free resume review.

2.       You Don’t Showcase Your Strengths

If recruiters receive hundreds of resumes on a weekly basis for a single position, they want to be able to quickly identify why you are a better candidate amongst the other few hundred applicants. Your resume must showcase your strengths? What makes you qualified for the position? Employers are looking for a candidate who can do the job. If your resume doesn’t do so in the short time hiring managers take to review a resume, your resume will gently be placed in the garbage can.

3.       Vague Claims

Make sure in showcasing your strengths that you don’t make too many vague claims. Rather than stating things such as: “I’m a strategic, clear thinker, I can work alone or in a group,” you can say something like “I have managed a team of six, as well as acted alone as an in-house communications department.” Recruiters receive a high volume of resumes with loads of vague statements. Make sure you stand out by being a little more specific. Provide hiring personnel with the detailed experience and/or achievements they are looking for.

4.       Too much or too little information.

Most hiring managers simply do not have the time or desire to read through a resume that is too long. On the other hand, a resume that doesn’t provide enough information to the employer is a resume that won’t have much success.

The length of a resume has always been a debate. Although a two-page resume is the average, it all depends on the position you are applying for. For instance, a resume for a senior position will typically contain more information than a resume for an entry-level job, as you have more experience/functions to include.  The trick is to include enough information to show that you’re qualified for the position. Evaluate your experience. Work that isn’t relevant to the position you’re applying for should be left off your resume. Only include experience that can relate to the duties of the job.

As previously stated, resume length will remain a much debated about topic. The best way to address this concern is to have a certified professional resume writer (CPRW) review your resume, as he/she isn’t emotionally attached to your past experience.

Remember, you are competing with tons of applicants. A resume that doesn’t stand out is a resume that will be passed to the garbage can immediately. Follow these tips to make sure your resume avoids the trash.

 
Tips for the Recently Unemployed Print E-mail

Losing a job can be very depressing, but steps should be taken immediately once your contract has reached termination. It’s also very important that you avoid the unemployment blues and to stay positive! 

While keeping your spirits high, your lifestyle will have to change a little bit. With that being said, if you’re recently unemployed, consider these steps:

See if you qualify for unemployment benefits

If you haven’t done anything to warrant your job termination, you may qualify for unemployment benefits. If you do qualify, you’ll receive small compensation during the time it takes for you to secure new employment. This can be helpful to you, considering the fact your personal budget will have to be restructured.      

Update your resume

If you’ve been recently laid off after being in a position for quite some time, you may have a resume that’s outdated. Review your resume and add your newly acquired experience and skills. If you need assistance writing a resume, you can send it to the experts at GetInterviews for a free resume review. Our resume writing team will offer you expert feedback on how to make your resume stand out.

Inform people; Tap into your network

Make sure you let your network know that you are in fact looking for a new job. This will not only get the word out that you’re looking for work, but you also may be able to nab an interview if someone is hiring at the same time of your search. Tap into your network and be open to any opportunity that may arise.  

Connect through social media

Adding the utilization of social media to your job search strategy can help you stay up-to-date on new job openings. In addition, LinkedIn proves to be an effective platform for recruiters searching for new candidates. Keep your profile updated and make an effort to connect with influential people in your industry.

Develop your skills; Stay active

While unemployed, use the time to develop your skills. Take advantage of courses and/or conferences that can help you add the skills needed to better yourself. Volunteering is a great way to strengthen your skills. It also helps you form relationships with people in your industry.

Staying active is also an important aspect in keeping a positive attitude. Make sure you’re getting some form of exercise so that you stay healthy during the off time.

Remember to be positive, and to keep an open mind.  

 
4 Ways to Improve your Job Search Right Now Print E-mail

As the summer winds down, how’s the job search going? Did you stay on top of the latest job search strategies, or did you ease up a little? In a recent article, we discussed the negative influence that the summer season may have on job seekers. Since many job seekers minimize their efforts during the summer, it’s important that you keep your efforts high!

With that being said, now is the time to get right back into the swing of things. Here are a few ways you can improve your job search right now!

Review your resume

Review your resume from an interviewer’s standpoint and be honest – Would you hire yourself if YOU were the employer? Does your resume support the requirements of the position? Is your resume outdated? If you’re not certain that your resume is as strong as it can be, then it may be beneficial to consult a resume writing expert. A free resume review can assure you that you’re attacking the job search in full force.

An employer spends an average of six seconds reviewing your resume. This means you need to have a resume that makes a strong first impression.

Review and optimize your LinkedIn profile

First of all, if you’re not on LinkedIn, you should be. Why? Well for starters, a recent survey shows that 93% of job recruiters scour LinkedIn to find qualified candidates. Can you afford to miss out on that opportunity?

Your LinkedIn profile must be optimized for job search success. Use industry-related keywords and skills in your profile and use them often. Join groups pertaining to your industry to learn and contribute to the conversation. Lastly, connect with people and grow your network. Having a thriving LinkedIn presence by using LinkedIn optimization strategies will better your chances of finding job search success.

Make use of social media functionalities

Although there are many different social networks in the digital spaces, not every network serves the same purpose. There are different benefits of having a profile on all of these social networks, but if you only have time to manage one, as we’ve said in our previous job search articles, LinkedIn is undoubtedly your best bet. However, this doesn’t mean that you can ignore the functions of the other networks.

Twitter has a very strong search feature that can help you track down jobs and recruiters. You may or may not be familiar with the hashtag (#) search feature that targets specific tweets on the network. For instance, a search for the term “#prjobs” or “#techjobs” will return the latest tweets (usually from recruiters or agencies) that are hiring in the PR and technology industries respectively.

Learn social media job search strategies and utilize them in your efforts.

Start networking

If it hasn’t set in yet, networking is an influential strategy in the job search. Meeting and connecting with people in your industry can be just the push you need to get your resume to the top of the pile. Having the connections on the inside will better your chances of job search success, so what are you waiting for? Learn how to network like a champion and get to a networking event this weekend!

You can find a networking event on LinkedIn or even websites such as Meetup.com or Eventbrite.com. Simply type in the term “networking” and find a job or hobby-related event in your area.

Get back to the job search with these four strategies right now!

 
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