7/7/2014 8:45 PM ET|
10 major mistakes you're making in your job hunt
Here's what you've got to watch out for if you are having trouble landing a new job.
Are you frustrated because hiring managers aren't calling you about positions you've applied for? Have you applied for dozens – if not hundreds – of jobs, with zero response? It's a tough market out there, but there might be some mistakes you're making that aren't helping your case.
1. You're lazy about spell checking your résumé
There's nothing more grating on a hiring manager's nerves than a résumé full of errors. Fortunately, using the spell checker is an easy fix, but don't rely on this alone; it's still imperative that you carefully read through to make sure there are no syntax mistakes the software didn't catch. Review all the dates on your résumé. You don't want to appear to have sketchy work history because the dates are off. Read your résumé aloud to ensure you don't miss anything, and then ask a few friends to review it as well.
2. You do a poor job of explaining your work experience
It can be a challenge to really explain what you did at your last job, but having cloudy work experience certainly won't make you look appealing to potential employers. Start by making a list of all your responsibilities at a given job. Then condense them into your résumé, choosing the ones most related to the job you want. Ask co-workers to summarize your role, as they might have a different perspective and way of explaining your position.
3. You're blanketing the Internet with your résumé
Want to know why you aren't getting calls for interviews? Because you're not even reading the descriptions for half the jobs you apply for. Quantity does not beat quality. It's better to apply for fewer jobs that are actually a good fit.
- Office.com: Download resume templates
4. Your résumé says a lot without saying anything
Maybe you don't have a lot of work experience, so you try to fill up your résumé with filler words to make it look longer. Employers aren't stupid; this is the equivalent of writing your high school final in 20-size font to make it meet the page requirement. Also, if a hiring manager can't quickly skim your résumé to get the gist of your work experience, she'll move on to the next one.
5. Your email address is childish
If you're sending your résumé from email@example.com, consider the impression you're making. If you're trying for professional, you're failing. It's free to create another email address, so use your name, or your first initial and last name as your email-address handle for all job-related correspondence.
6. You're applying for roles just out of reach
It's aspirational to want to grow your career, but consider whether those jobs you're applying for are a bit out of range for your current experience. For example, if you have five years of experience working as an account manager, it might be a stretch to apply for a vice president role. You'll get there, but you need more experience and promotions in between where you are and where you want to go.
7. You're spending time on Facebook that you should spend finding a job
You've applied for your three jobs this week; what's the big deal? If you think finding a job is something you can get done in an hour each week, you've just uncovered why you haven't been hired. Some say you should spend between 15 and 25 hours a week on the job hunt. Some say longer. It takes time to sift through job boards, look at companies' hiring pages, revamp your résumé and network online and off. If you're serious about getting hired, invest the time.
8. You don't know how to network
If all your efforts are going into applying for jobs on job boards, sorry to tell you: you're probably not going to find one. According to Jobvite's social recruiting survey from 2013, only about 14 percent of job seekers find a job on boards, while others get hired through networking efforts. Find networking groups that target your industry. Attend gatherings at the companies you have your eye on. Then connect with these people on social media to keep the relationships going. You don't want to flat out ask for a job, but you do want to get on these folks' radars.
9. You suck at interviews
How much time have you actually put into preparing for interviews? Don't put all your attention on the job search process and leave the interview to chance. There's plenty you can do beforehand to prep, including researching the company, learning about the key players there and practicing common interview questions.
10. Your online profile is nonexistent or questionable
These days, the first place hiring managers go to learn about applicants is Google. If there aren't any search results for your name, they can't really glean much about you beyond your résumé and cover letter. Or if they find wild spring break photos on Facebook, well, let's just say that doesn't cast the best light on your application. You can control what people find when they search for you simply by being active on blogs and professional networking sites like LinkedIn. Write content that relates to the field you want to work in. Participate in conversations. Start a professional website with samples of your work.
More from U.S. News & World Report
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Reason number 10)
Oh really??? Employers, do you REALLY want someone who spends all their time and life online??
I, for one am NOT on Facebook and DON'T EVER intend to be on it.
If the employer REALLY wants to know about me let them ask!!!
And besides my off-work life is NONE OF YOUR GD BUSINESS!!!!
Articles like this are what ruined me for interviews 5 years ago. I read them all and tried to put them all into practice when I interviewed. I ended up looking like a fool. Instead of just being myself, I tried to be what all these job hunting articles told me to be.
Well, screw that. If you want to hire ME, then hire me. If you want to hire that little 20 year old, then go for it. And most do. but a few weeks later, their ad is back in the paper or online, because that little 20 year old didn't stay. That was YOUR loss, employer, for being cheap. You got what you paid for, and in the long run, it cost you way more than just hiring an older worker.
I finally gave up and opened my own small business online. I'm licensed and free from bosses who don't care about anything that doesn't walk around in stiletto heels and a short skirt.
Oh I get it all right, Bill2830, I just REFUSE to go along with the BS that MSN spews out in the name of "news", and so-called "helpful" articles, that tell people nothing they don't already know, or give out idiotic "advice".
The best one lately, was one a couple of weeks ago on the unplugging of your electronic devices to save electricity. PUHLEEZ!!!
Besides these articles are pretty good entertainment, as long as you look at them that way. Entertainment.
1-I truly understand this, but does one really need to be an English major to apply for a job outside of academia? You may have zero spelling errors but have a few run on sentences or maybe it doesn't flow as smoothly as it could, is that really a deal breaker, depending on the job?
2-By the time most of us reach our 40's we have tons of work experience. No we shouldn't add that Burger King job we had when we were 16 but it's really hard to put down all we can offer in a short amount of space, can't have a long resume it irritates hiring managers!
3-You know why this happens? Many employers demand a list of qualifications a mile long, like 15 things for example. If I meet 10 of those I will apply. Also due to the economy many are forced to apply for a specific number of jobs per week, like if you are getting unemployment benefits or welfare.
4- You want to skim my resume but I can't add all that I am????
5-no fault here.
6-This goes back to maybe you have to have a specific number, maybe you do meet the qualifications just not the years of experience. They want 7 you have 5.
7-One can only spend so many hours a day job hunting, and only ****s with a job will not understand this. You wake up, hit the internet and apply for all jobs you remotely qualify for, on all the sites available. If it takes 2 hours today then it took 2 hours and forget about going in person!!! They tell you to apply online. How many resumes does one need, revamp? Are you serious?
8-So what if you live in a small town where companies don't network?
9-Interviews suck, period. You are on display and nervous. I read about the company, I came prepared but guess what? How often has the hiring manager told you all about the company during the interview? Now what? I now have to pull a question out of my **** because sites like this tell me I MUST ask a question or appear uninterested!
10-If you search my husband online you will fine ZERO about him. He doesn't do social media. What do you need to know that my resume, cover letter AND application didn't tell you? Remember years past when that's all that mattered and MANY good people were found to work the job? Yes, I'm old school and googling a person to find out about them is wrong. Everyone I know is a completely different person at work then online. We know how to behave at work, in our private time we get to be ourselves.
This whole MSN soft news-page filler junk is no doubt written by young 20's communications major dropouts from their parents' basements for a fat 6 cents a word. They can't get a good job because they suck at everything, not just interviews.
I agree with the individual who gave up & started their own business. After acting as an excellent employee, arriving to work early and doing a diligent job, I was fired. I can't work for anyone now because I do things practically and in a common sense way. That excludes most of the employers out there! I have and will continue to act like myself. I'm respectful, sincere, passionate, educated, and tenacious. BUT, if you take the attitude that you're GOD I will and have told companies to "Shove the job up their ****"!
Here's my top-10 list right back at interviewers working in hiring businesses:
1. Don't act like an arrogant J-O just because you've got a degree in **** kissing. So many people who've gotten "theirs" immediately forget what it's like in the trenches. How do you know that this exact scenario wouldn't do a complete reversal where you're the one begging for a job? Would you like it if somebody acted like they were the judge and jury of your fate without giving you a fair chance?
2. If you expect to be treated with compassion, respect & dignity, lead by example, pay it forward & let that roll down hill instead of the other stuff.
3. When you see an astute, well dressed person who's answered your array of questions with solid answers, don't assume that they're going to take your position in the company.
4. While on that subject, let the "interviewee" ask you some questions. The interview is a 2-way street. How do they know you're not a puppet relative of an executive who knows nothing?
5. If you're looking for a qualified candidate, they don't come cheap. Don't insult them with a $25K job which requires $80K worth of work. Despite what you may think, smart interviewers/people in general know that they're not just going to be executing the tasks for this job but those of the 3 people that you just laid off to save yourself money.
6. If the potential employee has shown their due diligence as far as preparing for the interview, paying tolls and gas money, then don't look disheveled and throw things aside at the last minute as though this interview means nothing to you. They're trying to earn $ to support families just like you.
7. "The economy is in a bad state right now." EVERYBODY KNOWS THAT!!!! Don't use that as an excuse to hold their job as ransom. Would you like being threatened with your job or berated every day even when you've executed your job brilliantly?
8. If you say you're going to contact the individual- DO IT! Everybody is busy. It takes more work finding a job than it does doing the actual job. You can afford to spend some time having someone draft rejection letters just as you had it to interview the person. HERE'S THE MAIN DIFFERENCE: it shows some sympathy and compassion for someone other than yourself as usual.
9. Just because your company may have won a major award, doesn't mean you had anything to do with it as the interviewer or an employee. Going a step further, awards are political arenas for connected people to brag about themselves a majority of the time. Case-in-point, do you remember who won the Academy award for best motion picture in 1977? Neither do most people. It wasn't the multi-billion dollar series of Star Wars movies which it should've been, it was "Annie Hall".
10. And lastly, if you're not going to hire the person, they showed you the courtesy of devoting their time to interview with you. If it's an art/design related position, don't downplay or insult their work. It's bad enough that you're too ignorant to notice talent when it's in front of you. THIS ISN'T "SHARK TANK" or " THE APPRENTICE". The work I'd completed at my last position is still posted online. If I was all that terrible at the job, one would think that the company would have taken it down.
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.