How to Stand out in Job Applications and Ace an Interview

ByL J Doulton

How to Stand out in Job Applications and Ace an Interview

Many people can find job applications stressful, and sometimes it can be brutal. You’re either trying to guess what the best approach for an opportunity, or the ways of increasing your chances of getting through shortlisting. This is only half the battle and you need to ensure you’re on top form for a successful interview. There’s no clear way to go about it all so here are some words of advice:

Research the job and use this to write a covering letter

Researching the role before applying and customising a cover letter for each specific position is a great way to highlight your suitability. Be sure to point out the matching qualifications and experience you have to the job description. I would always include examples of similar work or projects you’ve done previously.

Sending this type of personalised cover letter is invaluable, but it’s worth preparing a template that you can alter to suit each prospect. It’s a great tool that can give a good first impression and showcase your story, skillset, and personality to increase chances of getting an interview.

Interview with confidence

Most of the time an interview goes wrong, it’s due to nervousness so your frame of mind while in an interview is key. It’s important to remember you may not be right for every position you interview for, but that job offer will happen. Best of all is when it does, you’ll look back and be glad you didn’t get those other positions. The best way to think of it is; for the employer, it’s a meeting to see if you would fit the team and the duties required, but it’s also for YOU to see whether you like the sound of the job and culture there too, interviews work both ways! Be yourself is the best advice anyone can give and it’s easier to do that when thinking in this way.

Companies also have different expectations, research the company before the interview (read their website) and make sure you know the basics of the business. Your readiness contributes to your confidence. Prepare any questions you think of while doing this to ask in the interview. Interviews get easier with preparation and practice and the confidence that comes with those is what produces successful interviews.

Interview Follow-up & Feedback

After an interview, Unless given a timescale to expect feedback, it’s reasonable to follow-up after 3 days if you’ve had no response. If you didn’t get the job, still try to get some feedback to help learn from any mistakes you might have made. Following up can also improve the chance of the manager considering your application. Remember, don’t be disheartened if you do not get the job. The hiring manager knows the company environment far better than you so if they feel there is someone better for the role, you probably wouldn’t have liked it there anyway!

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It’s worth mentioning a lot of these problems come from the recruitment process we are all used to in itself. This is something we are passionate about changing and we believe that it’s emotional and social competencies that are more important than simply where you worked previously. Yet that’s often the biggest influencing factor with paper-based shortlisting. There is a far more efficient and convenient way of showing what you’re really like within your application.  Here is a link explaining how it works in more detail, I welcome any comments.

Happy job hunting!

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