Finding the perfect job –or any job- is itself a full-time job.  There is so much information available, either through a Google search or from friends and family.  The entire process can be overwhelming.  As an HR Professional and as someone who spends 80% of my time posting, screening and interviewing for roles, I have decided to put together some helpful tips based on some common missteps I see daily.

1. Don’t limit yourself to online applications through tricky, convoluted applicant tracking systems (ATS)

Anyone and everyone can hit an ‘apply now’ button and send off their resume to the basement of an ATS or back of the resume pile.  Once you submit your application online, don’t consider the process to be over.  Instead, go on LinkedIn and see if you can connect with the recruiter or hiring manager.  Call up the reception and ask for the hiring manager or HR’s email or reach out to someone at the company.  I guarantee that if you can add a personal touch to the process, your resume will be pulled out from the pile for a second and deeper glance.

2. Be Flexible with your resume 

Yes, you’ve triple checked it and have an awesome template, but remember that each role you are after requires different qualifications.  Change your resume to demonstrate your qualifications based on the information provided to you on the job posting (make sure you save a copy, they can disappear).  Your resume is a living document and you shouldn’t be afraid to switch things around or even take away irrelevant information for a certain job.  You should position yourself to be a direct match for the specific role you are applying for – otherwise a recruiter or hiring manager won’t know – you must tell them!

3. Get a LinkedIn profile! (or update your current one) 

Not a fan of social media? Me either. But 90% of recruiters are using LinkedIn as a primary tool for searches and job postings.  It can be a huge asset for a passive job-seeker (not to mention the networking opportunities that LinkedIn offers).  As a recruiter, if I go in and search someone with your skill-set in your geography and you aren’t there, well, someone else is getting the job.

4. Follow up with a Thank You 

When I was in school, it was ingrained in us to send a thank you note after an interview.  This seems to be an ancient art nowadays (and I’m considered a Millennial!).  I would estimate that I receive less than 1 thank you note from each round of interviews that I am hiring for.  An original and thoughtful thank you is a super easy way to demonstrate the kind of employee you will be.  It goes a long way and can be the difference between getting a job or not, depending on the competition.
Hope you find these job search tips helpful. I recommend taking advantage of the Employability Skills and Essential Skills Job Seeker webinars for additional insights and resources to help you land your dream job!
Sarah Casorso, CPHR
HR Advisor, ECO Canada