More than just Grades
It’s no longer just ok to have great grades and a great cover letter. The old formula of getting great grades no longer guarantees being invited to interview. In many cases, it is a little outdated and not the only factor employers take into consideration when deciding who to hire. The working world has changed so quickly. You are not expected to have all the answers, but what you are expected to have is basic skills, business understanding and the willingness to make a difference.

If you want to make a great impression, match the grades with additional skills and great practical experience. Grades might help to attract attention, but it’s the practical experience and “can do” attitude which will HOLD a potential employer’s attention when reviewing your application. Practical experience is priceless because it means you have an understanding of how a business works.

Laying the Foundation

It’s not just what you know, but who you know which is now more important than just good grades and a brilliant cover letter. If you already know people in industry then great, but if you don’t get busy in networking to build your contacts. Nothing beats real professional relationship building and building a community of online relationships is also very important. Remember “people buy people” which is usually built on trusting professional relationships. A recent survey by Jobvine found that 34% of employers recruit based on shared common connections.

Use the following checklist to ensure you profiles are up to date and professional.

  • Good professional headshot photograph on LinkedIn
  • No incriminating photos on any social media platforms. It’s a given fact that employers go through social media profiles to mine information on potential candidates.
  • Ensure all your skills and experiences are up to date.
  • Avoid using generic words like analytical and ambitious. Instead match the skills by showcasing the experience.
  • Keep the profiles updated regularly, especially LinkedIn

How to raise your profile during the selection process?

Here are a few tips to help you raise your profile

  • Utilise your contacts who may be able to recommend you
  • Match the packaging with the product. Take a look at the core skills and experience you need for your chosen industry. How many of those skills can you already demonstrate?
  • If you don’t have the required skills, how will you acquire them? If unsure, ask for advice through friends, family or even people in industry and ask for their advice on how to get the necessary skills and experience needed.
  • If core skills are missing then, carefully select companies for internships or off cycle work experiences.
  • If you approach the big popular companies, then be prepared for a competitive selection process. To increase your chances, try smaller companies and build your internship portfolio that way.

Putting it all together

When your application/CV/resume lands on the desk, you potentially have less than 10 seconds to capture attention. Otherwise you run the risk of being passed over during the recruitment process.

If you require additional information, check out our website for further practical blog posts. http://www.iplan-myfuture.com.

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