It’s more important today than ever before that people start understanding how to manage their careers. Although many people do not spend much time planning out their career moves, the 2020 pandemic has taught us all that within a blink—jobs/careers, businesses, and economies can change.
United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reports people will change jobs 10-15 times, with an average of 12 times. When you haven’t looked for a job in a while, or even if you are currently looking, a job search can be intimidating. If you’re trying to decide whether you should leave your long-time job, you can find additional resources in “How to Know When It’s Time to Make a Job or Career Change,” which I will provide a link below for you to get a free copy of this great ebook.
One of the biggest things to consider is how much the job search has changed since the last time you looked for a new job. If it’s been five years, 10 years, or even more since your last job search, there are some things you need to know to conduct a modern job search.
Job search methods have changed dramatically, especially in recent years, and you will find lots of conflicting advice online about resumes and the job search. Some articles will tell you that the resume is dead and that Google or LinkedIn is the “new resume.” That’s not true. The vast majority of recruiters and hiring managers still rely on resumes in the hiring process.
From the jobseeker’s perspective, working with a professional resume writer to develop the resume is instrumental in identifying the skills and value you have to offer to a prospective employer and coming up with the content for your LinkedIn profile. Most people today need a resume and a LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn is an important job search tool that can help you be found online by recruiters and hiring managers who are looking for someone with your specific skills and experience. A complete LinkedIn profile includes a current photo, targeted Headline, summary/about, and content in the Experience, Education, and Skills sections that align with your resume. While it is important to have a completed profile, it doesn’t replace the resume.
Resumes themselves have changed. The old “objective” statement at the top of the resume is now an “executive summary” or “qualifications profile” that immediately showcases who you are and what you have to offer a prospective employer. Objective statements were about what you wanted; the new summary is about what you can do for the employer.
The days of the “generic” resume are also gone. Instead, resumes must target specific jobs. A resume not tailored towards a specific type of position is a “career obituary” and tells the story of the past — not the potential you have to offer to a prospective employer and how your specific experience, education, and skills can benefit the company or organization.
An interview-winning resume spells out the specific value that you have to offer prospective employers without including additional, irrelevant experience. To create such a document, it is vital to understand the particular needs of that specific role, and thus, the resume must be tailored for the needs of the company.
With this in mind, you need to identify a specific job title that you are pursuing, and even more helpful to collect 3-5 job postings for this type of position. Also, if these job postings are no longer active or you do not wish to apply to this specific company, you still want to review similar job postings to gain a better understanding of employers’ needs and key words. Being able to incorporate relevant keywords while describing current and past work experience is one way to demonstrate value to a prospective employer. An analysis of relevant job postings helps make this possible.
Not surprisingly, the biggest thing that has changed in the job search is the impact of technology. The ability to apply online for a position has contributed to a substantial increase in the sheer volume of applications that companies receive for open positions. It takes seconds — and costs almost nothing — for a job seeker to apply for a position online. Consequently, companies are inundated with applicants for job openings.
In response to this deluge of applications, companies are using technology to handle the resumes and help identify candidates to interview. Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) have changed the application and resume screening process, particularly in mid-size and large companies. The ATS software allows companies to determine which candidates may be a match for a particular position, which is why having a resume with industry-specific keywords and phrases is so important in 2020.
Just like most things in life, change is inevitable. Sometimes changes can make people feel very uncomfortable, which adds to stress levels. Navigating through the job search process can be daunting, but hopefully, arming yourself with new information will help you guide your decision-making to have better outcomes.
- Read more about Applicant Tracking Software here.
- Get your FREE “How to Know When It’s Time to Make a Job or Career Change” eBook here.
- Read more about LinkedIn for 2020 here.