How to impress with your CV

When it comes to applying for jobs, first impressions can count for a great deal. Very often, the very first thing a potential employer will know about you will be written on the CV that you included with your job application. Having a great CV can make all the difference between being asked for an interview and being rejected out of hand.

When writing a CV, it is helpful to consider things from the employer’s point of view. They will be looking for those people who would seem, at least on paper, ideally suited to the position being offered. They may well have to read through a great number of CVs before they decide which candidates they wish to interview, so they will, naturally, be looking for the ones that really stand out from the crowd.

While using the same CV for a variety of job applications, and changing only the covering letter, might seem a time-efficient way of applying for jobs, this approach has several drawbacks. Chiefly, it will decrease the chances that your CV is truly marketing you as a person well suited to the demands of the job in question. In addition, sending in a generic CV unmodified to the demands of a particular job, especially now in this digital age, smacks of laziness, incompetence, and a lack of desire for the job – hardly an image that you would want to project to a potential employer!

By tailoring your CV to the job you are applying for, you can significantly increase your chances of being asked to come in for an interview. In order to do this successfully, you will need to do some research into the background of the organisation in question as well as judging the personal characteristics and qualifications that they would seem to be looking for in an applicant.

Not only should your CV be tailor-made for each and every one of the jobs that you apply for, it should also be updated regularly to take account of any advances you have made in your education and career. It would probably be a good idea to keep a constantly updated ‘master’ CV file on your home computer, which can then be quickly customized to highlight the qualifications and personal attributes required by the jobs that you are applying for.

For jobs and career advice, visit employireland.ie.

Social Networks Vs Online Job Boards…

Here are just two facts first:
1. Revenues of online job boards are falling
2. Social networks are (still!) gaining popularity

Why are job boards in trouble all of the sudden after being profitable for more than 10 years?

The troubled world economy that hit the recession in the second half of the 2008 and continued well into most of the 2009 (is it over yet???!!!) resulted in the first dip of the volume of the internet traffic. First ever actually. It is the first time since the Internet exists that the volume of the activity on the internet was smaller compared with the same month a year ago. All the iPhones and all kind of internet enabled devices did not help here. There have been far less people working (and surfing in their breaks), and far less people had time to surf during their work.

The combination of the large reduction of the job advertisements (that generate the revenue for the job boards, and also the drop in web site traffic in general – the figures of a job boards in 2009 do not look so rosy!

Social networks are a long term threat to the job boards.

The number of people spending time, and the sheer amount of time people spend on the social networking sites does not really leave much time to search the job boards. Compared to the job boards, the social networking sites are actually extremely boring. There is 0 interaction on the site really. As a job hunter you apply for a job or jobs you like, and what you get back in 99% of the cases is an automated response in the email. The confirmation of the job application. Impersonal and sterile. The social networks on the other side let you publish the content for other users (or anyone on internet) to read and see. Social networks let you say what you think (that your spouse doesn’t!). Social networks encourage you to comment pretty much anything!

You can meet new people. You can catch up with old school mates. You can check the last summer holiday photos of your cousins. You can upload your fancy wedding photos, with all the family in strange dresses in the background! You can grade photos and comment them. You can upload video from your car racing weekend. Your greatest fishing catch.

Social network is like a pub. People are talking. Social network is like a ‘Corso’, the main street boardwalk where you hang out with your friends and their friends. You can also do some business with all this people there if you feel like it. But do not really have to, since you can check how your mates commented the game yesterday. And tell them how YOU think your home club should have played.

After you got used to the way of communication that the social networks or let you by broadcasting YOUR message to the masses, the idea of browsing boring listings of the jobs on the job sites simply isn’t that appealing any more.

Social Recruitment is born simply because people are far more active on the social networks than on job boards. If Twitter wouldn’t have that many visitors and users it would be impossible to hire staff there. But the sheer volume of users on Twitter makes it a platform where you really can hire staff with the most crazy restriction anyone have ever imposed on the recruitment process – communication limited to 140 characters (spaces included!!!). Facebook is probably the platform with the largest number of useless, and distracting applications but the fact that the number of active users is larger than most of the countries in the world – makes it a perfect sourcing application for a large number or positions. LinkedIN is specialising for the recruitment itself – the social network of professionals. Even their Jobs section isn’t visited as much as all the others since it is simply boring. Visitors expect more from the social networks then the boring jobs listings. They want to contribute. They want to read other peoples contribution. They way to confirm their decisions by getting the independent views from other people with similar conclusions.

Free Jobs (freejobs.ie)

Who says there is no such thing as a free lunch?

free-jobsI call from a client today about their jobs being published to FreeJobs.ie made me thinking. Their jobs published on the Free Jobs web site are about 3 years old. They got an application for a job advertised there yesterday. Since my client is using the multiple job posting service eRecruit, as a part of our Recruitment Marketing Manager product, they assumed that eRecruit is supplying the jobs to the Free Jobs web site, as it does to all the Irish Jobs sites (and news sites, and blogs, and niche web sites, etc…). Well in this case this was not the case. We in eRecruit have actually never even heard about a site called Free Jobs before.

So jobs published on Free Jobs web site are taken from somewhere. And published on the Free Jobs web site, without the owner of the content – the advertiser, in this case a recruitment agency knowing about that fact. Three years after that, the advertiser receives the job application. And un unpleasant situation really – how to explain to the poor job hunter that the recruiter quoted on the Free Jobs web site does not work anymore in that recruitment agency? How to explain that the company that was actually hiring does not even exist anymore? How to explain why is the job advertised, and invites the job seeker to reveal quite a lot of his private data (in the CV) for something that is not there? Quite unpleasant, isn’t it?

Well, that is the problem with the things that are free. No one is really responsible for the maintenance or the quality of their service. Sometimes it seems one would be better of paying 1 Euro, or some minimal fee, and receive a guarantee of a quality of service. This provides some revenue to the service provider as well, that helps funding the project. In the same time it gives the user of the service a level of guarantee that the service provided will work well.

I like free things. We all do. But unfortunately there are inherited problems with free services. Free Jobs web site is not the alone in the scenario where a free service of advertising jobs simply failed because of the unsustainable business model.