Researching companies in preparation for an interview is long-standing career advice. But your research methods may need to be updated by taking a more focused approach. Not only must you prepare effective answers to typical interview questions, you must also identify ways that your skill set can solve problems for the hiring manager.
Here’s how to expand your Internet search methods and land a job:
1. People research on social media – Use the corporate website and LinkedIn profiles of current employees to expand on your knowledge of company initiatives. You can even use these resources to make initial contact with some of those executives prior to sending in your resume. Join online professional groups as well.
2. The company website and its social profiles – Immerse yourself in the company website. Go well beyond the home page to explore the corporate mission, community initiatives, and recent honors.
3. Creative sleuthing – Do your own “market research” of the company. Do you know any customers or clients? Check out testimonials on the company website, or check with the local Chamber of Commerce for another perspective.
More knowledge makes you a better candidate. Your research will help you develop a “feel” for the company to determine how well you may fit in with the corporate culture. Your initiative in going the extra mile will set you apart from the competition and fully prepare you as an engaging candidate for the interview.
Students may worry that they chose the wrong major, or it won’t be as employable as they thought it would be; but recent study findings show that a recent graduate’s employability is less about the degree they earned, but more about the experience they had and the skills they learned.
A new employer survey from the Association of American Colleges and Universities strongly suggests that the major students graduate with isn’t as important as the student being broadly educated. The survey published interesting findings that can be related to young entrepreneurs looking to get ahead of their peers in the after college real world job hunt – or anyone who wants to switch careers.
- 93 percent of employers said that a demonstrated capacity to think critically, communicate clearly and solve complex problems is more important than a job candidate’s undergraduate degree.
- 95 percent say they prioritize hiring college graduates with skills that will help them contribute to innovation in the workplace.
- 95 percent of those surveyed say that it is important that new hires demonstrate ethical judgment and integrity, intercultural skills, and the capacity for continued new learning.
Remember your teacher telling you that bad behavior would be put on your permanent record? Well, social media platforms are today’s equivalent – and can make or break your job search. CareerBuilder surveyed more than 2,100 hiring managers and found that 43 percent of respondents who use social media to research potential candidates have discovered information that has caused them not to hire someone.
This information ranges from posting inappropriate photos to discriminatory comments and lying about qualifications. Because employers are using all the tools available to them to assure they make the correct hiring decisions, the use of social media continues to grow. It’s essential that job seekers be aware of how they present themselves on social media platforms.
Here are some things that can help your image as a responsible job candidate who will be an asset to any organization:
- Convey a professional image
- Provide a good feel for your personality
- Demonstrate a well-rounded character with a wide range of interests
- Showcase creativity
- Highlight strong communication skills
- Include references from colleagues
People are relying more and more on mobile devices to interact with the world around them – and that trend extends to the job search process. Mobile job search apps allow users the accessibility to keep up with the latest job openings, and the privacy to pursue new opportunities on their own mobile device. Here are some best practices to help you get the job!
- Alerts – Sign up to receive job alerts via text and/or email notification to stay on top of the newest jobs posted.
- Save searches – Save your search criteria within the job app, so it’s instantly available.
- Share – Take advantage of job app sharing tools on Facebook, Twitter and other career-related networks, to network “on the fly.”
- Access Career Resources – Top job apps often provide career-related articles, blog posts and industry news to provide tips and trends.
Stage fright isn’t just for actors auditioning for that big role. You may walk into your job interview as the most qualified for the position, but the way you come across is critical. Here are some tips that can help:
- Watch people being interviewed on television and take note of what works. Listen to tone of voice and pay attention to body language to convey confidence.
- Research tough interview questions and rehearse your replies.
- Do a mock interview with a friend – but keep the tone serious. The “interviewer” should throw you some unexpected questions.
- If possible, have another friend video your mock interview. You can then study it to see how you may be perceived during an actual interview. Work on any issues that project a lack of confidence or preparedness.
You need every advantage you can get during the interview process, so practice until you’re perfect!
The following is a list of employers that will be attending the job fair in Boise, ID on 9/12/12. Job seekers can register for the event at http://bit.ly/h2hfair
|US Army/Army Reserves|
|U. S. Forest Service|
|Bankers Life and Casualty Company|
|Assisting Angels Home Care|
|Intelligent Employment Solutions|
|Trinity Home Care and Resource, Inc.|
|The Guardian Life Insurance Companny of America|
|Transportation Security Administration|
|MWI Veterinary Supply|
|Idaho Dept. Health & Welfare|
|Interstate Electric Supply|
|Western States Equipment (CAT)|
|Action Couriers, Inc.|
|HP Enterprise Services|
|Idaho Division of Human Resources|
|TLC Home Health Care & Nursing|
|Riverside Hospitality LLC. DBA The Riverside Hotel|
|Valley Regional Transit|
|First Command Financial Services|
|MassMutual/Sage Wealth Management|
|Idaho Power Company|
|U.S. Bureau of Reclamation|
|Boise VA Medical Center|
|Modern Woodmen Frternal Financial|
|Legacy Home Health and Hospice|
|New York Life|
|Bankers Life & Casualty|
|Idaho Transportation Department|
|J.R. Simplot Company|
|Sorrento Lactalis American Group|
|Friends in Action|
|US State Department|
|Addus Home Health Care|
|Schwan’s Home Service, Inc|
|MAV EVENT SERVICES|
|Idaho State Police|
|Snake River Correctional Institution|
|Managed Wealth Financial|
|American Senior Benefits|
|Bureau of Land Management|
|Department of Energy, Idaho Operations Office|
|Insphere Insurance Solutions|
|Murphy Business & Financial Corporation|
|Idaho Correctional Center|
|Express Employment Professionals|
|shop.com/One Smart Spot|
|Ada County Highway District|
|Scrub ‘N Bubbles Cleaning, LLC|
|BRONCO MOTORS INC|
|Journal Broadcast Group|
|Plexus Manufacturing Solutions|
|Western Heating & Air Conditioning|
|Association Management Inc|
|SOS Employment Group|
|H&R Block (State of Idaho)|
|US Navy Reserve|
|Intermountain Gas Company/Montana-Dakota Utilities|
|Chris Reeve Knives|
|Two Men and a Truck|
|Goodwill Staffing Services|
|Boise State University|
|(Aspire Human Services) dba Preferred Community Homes|
|Rule Steel Tanks, Inc|
|Pak West Packaging Systems|
|World IT Solutions|
|Strategic Data Systems|
|Sage Technical Services|
|USDOI – Bureau of Land Management|
|MyBullfrog.com / Verizon|
|Les Bois Credit Union|
|Micron Technology, Inc.|
|BD Employment Solutions|
|Principal Financial Group|
|Saint Alphonsus Health System|
|HB Specialty Foods|
Job fairs are excellent ways to network face to face with employers who are looking to hire. We have been sponsoring numerous job fairs across the country in order to offer H2H users added value beyond applying for jobs on our website. (here is a list of upcoming job fairs)
Although these job fairs are great, we wanted to explore some other ways you can stay connected beyond applying for openings online and attending job fairs.
We reached out to some HR/Recruiter friends of ours to see what they would recommend for job seekers.
H2H: Other than job fairs, what are some other great ways to network with businesses to get a job?
Karen Siwak: Industry association conferences, association chapter meetings, trade shows, lunch and learn seminars and board of trade events.
Bridget Webb: Connect on Linkedin and follow on Facebook and Twitter.
These are two different styles of answers, but both make a call to action for networking.
In order to make these suggestions work, we recommend that you also have a clear understanding of what you want. If you’re confused about the industry you want to get into, it may cause you to spin and not get anywhere. Define your skill sets, pick a focus and put yourself out there. There is no better way to practice your networking skills than to just do it. Introducing yourself and engaging in conversation within your industry may just be the thing that’s holding you back from landing your next opportunity!
Adding Keywords to your resume is crucial to getting it noticed by companies you’ve applied for “digitally”.
Most companies now use what’s called ATS (Applicant Tracking System), a software application that enables the electronic handling of recruitment needs.
For those of you wondering how to choose the right keywords for your resume, the easiest way is to look on the job description itself.
In today’s tough job market, it is important to stand out amongst the crowd during the job interview. To help differentiate you from the average applicant, we suggest you follow the STAR technique. This technique provides a simple way to present complete and detailed answers to interview questions.
Situation- Give a specific example of a situation related to the question Task- Describe a task that needed to be accomplished Action- Explain the actions you carried out related to the situation or task Results- Explain the results of your actions