Updated: May 14, 2020
There are several levels to the job market. You may be a business trying to fill a position, an employee looking for a new opportunity, a student looking for that first job in your field, a parent rejoining the workforce, in the process of switching from one career or industry to another, or maybe you are a recruiter, trying to bring everyone together. Here are some tips for those involved in the current job market.
Tips for Job Seekers
When searching for a new job, the one thing to remember is, never give up. It is often easier said than done. Searching for jobs can be frustrating and overwhelming. While using multiple resources to aide in finding that perfect job for your next adventure, it may take longer than anticipated. Searching for the next perfect venture is time consuming and is another full-time job on its own.
It does not help, while searching for jobs, applicants have to fill out multiple forms, only to receive a poor standard message that states something along these lines “Thank you for submitting your application, due to the volume we will only be responding to those who qualify .” And then never hear from them again. For all the job seekers, do not get discouraged. If you still see the job posting months after you applied, then you know that they didn’t find the right candidate to fill the position and you are actually better off seeking employment else where, you deserve better. Why? Because they have your application on file and haven’t reached out to you.
Generally, job seekers are also frustrated with the timeliness of the response times after they send an email to either the agencies or the employer. Businesses are busy, but if they are not corresponding within a reasonable time-frame, they are giving the impression that the applicants time is not valuable. Candidates often wonder if they should work for a company that behaves in this manner, if they treat potential employees like this, how do they treat their actual employees.
Job seekers must never give up. You will find the right role you were meant to fulfill, and it will be worth it. Don’t get discouraged at the number of times you are rejected or left in the unknown. Just remember those companies weren’t right for you and you deserve better. Leverage all the resources you have available to you. Use your network, social media, agencies, and ask around if there are any open positions in your field. If you don’t already have a LinkedIn account, create one and ensure it is up to date. You also don’t need to put on a show for your potential employers, be yourself during the interview process, as that is who they are actually hiring. If they don’t like the type of person you are, then it is not the job for you. And remember, you may be working with them as well, so you are interviewing them during this process too.
Tips for Job Posters
Companies that have a standard message sent out to all job applicants must remember the wonderful applicants that apply for the position, their time is valuable. Whether they are employed or unemployed, they are taking time out of their day to fill out a form that is automated into a HRIS system leaving less data entry. Making time to engage with potential employees will show them that their time is valued.
Instead of having a standard message sent out to all applicants. Try to personalize it in a way that feels like you are addressing the candidate themselves. Something along the lines of “Hi _______, thank you for submitting your application, we will get back to you once we have reviewed our applicants.” There should be a second notification sent out to the candidates moving to the next step, “congratulations ______ you have made it to the next steps, …..,” and another for the applicants who did not qualify, such as “Thank you ______ for submitting your application, after thorough review of all the applications submitted, unfortunately you were not selected for an interview. We will be keeping your submission/profile for the next 3 months, if anything changes, we will notify you.” The applicants really appreciate this as it provides a more personalized experience, closure on the applications they have submitted, and they know when they see the job posting again they do not need to re-apply because they know that they will be contacted if the situation changes.
If you posted a job opening and did not find the right candidate the first time around, you have a pool of applicants from the last search, why not reach out to them and see if they are interested still? They took the time to apply and clearly wanted to work with you, reposting your job posting doesn’t always help, the applicants who already applied don’t know if it is a new post or an old post and may have the assumption that you don’t want to work with them any way. If employers don’t take the initiative and contact candidates, they are losing out on hiring the best talent for their open position. Another best practice is, if you have filled the position and no longer require the job posting, delete it. The Internet is littered with stale job postings. All this does is waste time for those applying to jobs. Do the right thing, delete the posting.
For businesses receiving applications, when you receive an email, and you are unable to respond within a reasonable time-frame, send a quick message to let them know when they can expect a detailed response. Emails and phone calls are the modern ways of communication and customer service is the number one priority in any organization. We all get tons of emails and phone calls, knowing how to manage your time regarding your workload and communication (emails/phone calls) is key. Having unaddressed emails/phone calls from job applicants more than a few days is not acceptable.
If you are looking for potential employees, you should be treating them with the same respect as if they are already your employee. Practice the core beliefs you are selling them. They took the time to apply, responding only makes sense. Use all the tools you have available to find the right candidate and when someone has almost all of the qualifications you are looking for, evaluate if you think they can fill the role and grow; take the leap and give them a chance.
People will surprise you. There is no benefit in hiring someone who has no drive to look ahead but has all the skills you are looking for, but hiring someone who has the drive to push forward and doesn’t have all the skills will be more beneficial. If the only thing preventing you from hiring a job seeker is because of money, have that discussion with them, and if they are worth the investment, find a way to make it work. This is how great companies excel. Sometimes the algorithm you have in your software does not tell you the full story of the candidate, you are not able to tell what type of person is behind the resume. Put yourself in their shoes, stop and think, does your resume incorporate all of your talents?
Tips for Recruiting Agencies
Agencies who are helping clients (job posters) to place candidates (job seekers), should try to help the job seekers out, especially when they have been rejected. By letting them know the reason why they did not make it to the next steps provides them valuable feedback. It also allows them to improve their skills or qualifications if necessary, to progress into a similar position. A good recruiter can sell any job seeker a role and place them with a client even when it doesn’t fit them at all, but an excellent recruiter will never set up a job seeker for failure.
As recruiters in agencies, you should value your job seekers. They are the people that make your business possible. Clients pay you to find the right candidates, and without job seekers, you would not be able to fill these roles. Your job is to play match maker, take pride in what you represent and ensure it is the best fit for both parties. As much as you are selling your client to the candidate, you should also sell the candidate to your client. Yes, some clients are looking for specific skills/softwares, but remember those are learnable as it is tangible, but intangible skills are not something one can learn easily, such as drive, problem solving, etc. You are in the perfect driver’s seat to explore the candidates and jobs available, so provide a full picture to both your clients and the candidates and bring the right people together.
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