There are hundreds of Kenyan job seekers who respond to the vacancies advertised. As a result, recruiters receive lots of application documents from which they have to sift and get the very finest of talent to be interviewed.
In order to stand out of this sea of applicants, you got to find a compelling way to distinguish yourself. This include:
1. Doing your homework well
It is so refreshing when a recruiter or employer talks to a candidate who has done sufficient research on the company’s history and culture and customized his/her resume to the organization and specifically the job at hand.
It demonstrates deep interest from candidate.
It shows a recruiter you’re not just interested in a job, but a career with the organizations.
2. Provide a link to your online profiles
Provide recruiters and hiring managers with all the information they need upfront by including a link to your (social media) profile on your resume.
There are also options available for housing an online portfolio with past work experience, all of your social media accounts, as well as a resume.
Ensure you clean up your social media presence before sharing links to it.
3. Customize your applications to align with the job posting
To stand out, any serious job applicant must utilize the verbiage that is in the job posting to customize their resume or application.
It shows the recruiter that you paid close attention to the requirements and related those requirements to what you did at your current or past employer.
Recruiters have limited time to go through all application details, so when they see a candidate whose skill sets align with the job requirements, they will pick out such a candidate for the job interview.
4. Project the right attitude
Every legitimate candidate will have a well-established resume. The game-changer would be the kind and level of energy and charisma that and eager candidate carries with him/her.
A job candidate with marginally less experience but with a better drive and passion than other applying candidates will stand a high chance of getting a job invite.
Make sure that the tone and structure of your application details show true enthusiasm and positive attitude.
5. Display your personality positively
During job interviews learn to maintain eye contact, don’t fidget and just be yourself.
Most companies hire for your personality — not the long list of skills on your resume.
Be enthusiastic, talk about your ideas, your triumphs and what you learned along the way. Show your creativity, innovation and uniqueness.
6. Show how you can solve a problem for the company
Find a problem or opportunity that directly affects the company you are applying to. Create a blog post specifically outlining how to solve the problem or how to take advantage of the opportunity.
Clearly outline the steps the company should take. Then instead of posting it as a blog post, paste it into an email and send it to the person in charge of hiring. Attach a resume, but the resume should just end up being a footnote to the email/blog post.
7. Give the company a taste of the work you’d do if you were hired
Take the initiative to show the potential employer what having you as an employee would be like.
For example, if you are applying for a talent management role, you could write up an outline of a talent acquisition and retention plan. For a public relations position you could craft a press release and outreach strategy for one of their newer products.
Impress the employer not only with your initiative, but also with how serious you are about working for them.
8. Show what you can do for the company in the long term
Organizations want people who are great both tactically and strategically. They want candidates who understand and appreciate both the “here and now” and also focus on the future of the organization.
You should demonstrate your focus by being able to share what you believe you can contribute to the company within the next two to five years based on what you have learned about the organization through the investor meetings, news, company PR releases, etc.
9. Be prepared to discuss salary
Any great job candidate should learn to be comfortable discussing salary issues with the employer.
Always be prepared to answer “Where are you at currently for salary?” and “Where do you want to be in your next role?” salary questions.
Get comfortable and be specific on those two numbers.
10. Focus on accomplishments and results more than skills
Often job applicants put the focus on their skills and their previous positions. The problem with this is that if almost every other applicant approaches it the same way, then there’s little chance of any applications rising to the top of the pile.
A good way to stand out is to make your accomplishments front and center.
When focusing on accomplishments, be specific: How much money did you earn for your company? How much did you save? How many people did you manage? What products did you launch? What programs did you implement?
Once you’ve listed your accomplishments, then support them with skills and positions.