5 Tips to Get an Edge on Your Next Job Hunt

It’s a given that job hunting is a ginormous challenge and the competition is always fierce. But there are ways to make sure you have an edge over other candidates. Below are five tips to make you warrior-ready and worthy of two thumbs up in your next job interview.

by Leah C. Eriguel, 10 August 2017

When it comes to career postings, it’s rare that you are the only candidate for the job. So apart from the usual advice about wearing the proper, well-pressed clothes, arriving early, and avoiding negative comments on your current company, here’s some solid advice to help make you the best bet for that much coveted job post.

1. Do Your Research

It gives you an edge when you know a little something about the company before your interview. In fact, your research should start before applying so that your top-line knowledge of the company is on your awesome cover letter (see next item). So, do some online research. Any company worth its salt should have a web presence. If it doesn’t, you may want to find out why before you pin your hopes and invest your precious time.

2. Shine Brighter with an Awesome Cover Letter

While it may be that some hiring managers don’t read cover letters, there are a lot that do and a great cover letter can make a huge difference in a pile of resumes. An awesome cover letter should be able to do two things: introduce you and your achievements, and then state the reasons why you are a great fit for the position. Of course, you can only know how you would be a good fit when you’ve done your research. Cover letters give hiring managers a glimpse of your personality and whether you are a good fit, not just for the position but also with the company’s culture.

3. Online Is Your Help Line

Go the extra mile and look up the company’s key people on Facebook and LinkedIn, including the person who will interview you. Google their names and see what comes up. What you’re looking for is interesting information, things you may have in common. Remember that knowledge is power.

4. Practice. Practice. Practice.

Hiring managers are always looking for stellar hires so prepare to be at your best. Google the usual hiring interview questions and practice with a friend. Get comfortable with discussing some experiences where you showed signs of leadership. It also helps to be ready to pinpoint your weaknesses and what you do to overcome them. Prepare to discuss how you handled difficult situations and the learnings that you took away from those experiences.

5. Have Intelligent Questions for the Interviewer

A job interview is more like a date than a beauty pageant. It’s not just about impressing the hiring manager, it’s also about communicating how interested you are in the company. Management guru Alison Green suggests you ask the following questions: Regarding the people who previously held the position you’re aiming for, what traits differentiated the good ones from the great ones? What are the current concerns of the company and how does this role help in addressing those? What is the biggest challenge I would need to face in this role? Keep in mind that a job interview is all about getting to know whether you and the company are a match made in corporate heaven.