This article was originally featured on The Career Scoop, a great career education resource for people of all professions.
By Harley Kim
People want to get ahead in their lives, and find jobs that lead them to greater things.
But often, that first job isn’t as easy, or alluring as you’d expect.
How do you navigate searching for a job?
And what is the now, and future of searching for a job?
Simple. Ask successful professionals.
And I’ve asked a recruitment director, that is in the know of what works, and doesn’t in job searching. Shaun Hughston was kind enough to share his insight in an interview, hard won throughout his career.
He sheds light on what is happening in recruitment, and what you need to know as a millennials searching for a job. Also, for those wanting to get ahead in your careers, he shares his personal experiences. Below is his bio.
Below Shaun shares his insight. He gives his take on where the future is in job searching, and gives tips in how to search for a job and career, sharing his personal experiences.
What are some of the trends, and future changes you see in recruitment today?
There are many changes happening, in particular with disruptive technology.
Also, it is easier to focus on a wider base of candidates (social media).
However, often the problem is being overwhelmed. Your LinkedIn account can get over flooded with recruiters trying to grab your attention.
How do millennials fare with social media?
Millennials do okay, and often flooded with responses, if they are in high demand professions (for example, doctors). It’s a backlash felt by job searchers.
It’s the opposite: Recruiters can go too far. LinkedIn is a lazy way to recruit if LinkedIn is the predominant tool used by recruiters.
There are three areas candidates fall into:
Having no social media presence.
A separate presence (private and professional).
A combined strategic presence.
It depends on the industry, but there are a few trends that aren’t working to the benefit of millennial job seekers.
Too much SEO: Buzzwords are becoming overused, ironically making you part of the crowd. It’s used heavily in resumes and LinkedIn profiles.
Sounding too stiff and corporate: There isn’t a person behind the profiles employers and recruiters read.
What tips can you give millennials to differentiate themselves?
Seek to add value: What value can you add to a company? See what benefit you can give to companies.
Be interactive: Be proactive. On LinkedIn, join groups, and comment and establish relationships.
Networking: It doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Connect by interacting and ring them up, talk!
Personalize, and humanize: Think about the ‘person’ reading your profile. Give a glimpse of yourself, to connect on a personal level.
Showcase your skills: Talk, and tell stories. Talk in the first person, as you are talking to an actual person. Don’t talk from a distant third person perspective.
Shaun points out below that the basics are still as important as ever.
Do the basics right
Social media is a part of the recruitment and selection process. You still need:
A cover letter.
In particular, industries such as the government (the biggest employer in Australia) require resumes and cover letters that are specific to criteria.
Education, including Universities, have failed in coaching graduates in ‘how’ to get a job.
The basics are still relevant today, and important to know as most millennials were never taught the basics in their education.
Below is Shaun’s personal insight, in what he learned when first working.
Shaun’s career insight
You don’t always end up working in your field of study. I worked in an in-house recruitment role in the health sector. I led massive campaigns, and it was stressful, and the pay wasn’t great.
But it gave me invaluable experience I couldn’t learn elsewhere, and I gained mentors that helped me along the way.
The insight I gained here was vital for my career. Find your niche early.
It’s hard, but sometimes it’s in those positions that don’t look as alluring.
Shaun’s advice: Take what job you can, and see it as a time of finding out your opportunities and your interests. View your first few jobs from a research point of view.
Here is Shaun’s advice in how to even the odds when going for job interviews.
A word from the wise
Instigate contact: If you knew someone from a company you were getting interviewed for, how much higher are your chances of landing that job? Enormous. Set down the groundwork. Networking, calling people and meeting them for coffee are great ways to get to know each other.
Finally, he shares some much needed advice in how to interact with recruiters.
What can millennials do to help recruiters get them the best job opportunities?
Before anything, get the basics right.
Here are some tips and values to have when interacting with recruiters.
Descriptive descriptions: Flesh out your skills and experiences. Even if you don’t have an exhaustive reservoir to draw upon, use stories and examples from University or volunteer work.
Be Empathetic: Consider your audience. What does the person on the other side want, when reading your profile summary?
Be humble: Don’t think stringing along several recruiters is an effective way of getting the best job offer. Recruiters are people. If you want the best chance, establish a relationship.
A-hole job candidate: Which pile do you think your resume will be in, the ‘to do box’ or archived away in virtual limbo? Ignoring calls and not following up won’t open any doors.
Recruiters have their processes: Let recruiters guide you through their processes. They know what they are doing, and need your cooperation. They have legal responsibilities to get information, and they need details from you to match you with the best role.
Recruiters aren’t a one fit for all
Not all recruiters will match what you need.
Healthcare is my field, and there are many other specializations.
If you don’t think your recruiter is right for you, it may be:
A lack of experience. Greenhorn recruiters may not be your best choice. BUT end relationships professionally, and look to establish another one. Don’t be a playboy.
Recruitment isn’t regulated heavily. The RCSA is a leading professional body that has guidelines and values that members uphold, but besides that there is not real regulating authority.
So you need to do your research and experience firsthand what different agencies have to offer.