09 November 2020
Are you doing these 7 things when hunting for a job? Don’t!
Embarking on the journey of finding new employment is an exciting, daunting and sometimes disheartening time. Talking to prospective candidates, however, we often find that some of the tactics they have employed do more harm than good. Here are our top seven things to avoid doing when looking for a new job…
1. Fixating on the right industry rather than the right job
Some people dream of working in MedTech others long to land a job in IT Security. One issue we notice is people apply for jobs in industries they want to work in, without considering if the role is the right fit for them. This is not just a waste of your time it’s a waste of the employer’s, it could even sour their opinion of you if the right job was to arise later.
If you have five years’ experience as an Account Manager, but you want to move to another industry, you need to wait until you find an Account Manager type role in that sector. This might seem obvious, but you would be amazed at how many people ignore this fact.
2. Using the same template for every application
While casting the net wide might seem like a good idea, whether you’re sending out four or 40 applications you need to spend the same amount of time writing each one. Many people come up with one ‘good’ covering letter which they think they can tweak and send out to dozens of different employers.
The truth is a good recruiter can identify this tactic and consider it lazy – not the first impression you want to give. Create a bespoke covering letter for each application, you can borrow a few ideas from a core template but try to tailor each one to that specific position.
3. Missing opportunities while waiting for the perfect job
Sitting in one position for years while you search for the perfect role is not in your best interest. It is better to look for new roles, that will help you develop as a professional, than it is to stagnate in one career waiting for ‘the right role’ to arrive. It is usually better to reach the perfect job by first hopping around a few positions in order to climb the ladder.
4. Giving negative reasons for leaving a job
Most of us have had at least one job we would like to forget. While you may want to shout from the rooftops how much you hated your previous employer, a job application is not the place to do so. It makes you look like you have an attitude problem, so any employer who reads your CV or covering letter is going to give you a wide berth.
A YouGov poll suggests that 10% of Brits have lied on their CV. With the two most common areas being in their qualifications and the amount of time spent in a previous role.
The problem is when a recruiter or employer conducts a reference check if they find you have been lying your application is going straight into the reject pile. Lying could even cost you a job you would have otherwise landed.
The other danger is if you do slip through the cracks you might find yourself in a position above your head, causing you to struggle to perform.
6. Failing to include relevant figures
When applying for senior positions recruiters want demonstrable metric proof of your achievements, not just waffle. A sentence like: “under my tenure sales saw a dramatic boost,” sounds vague and forgettable, whereas writing: “In my five years as Team Sales Manager my team saw a five per cent year-on-year increase in sales,” not only sounds more impressive it’s also more credible too.
7. Not proofreading an application
Finally, this may seem clichéd, but it is so for a reason: proofreading an application is paramount to getting through the front door. When recruiters spot poor spelling and grammar it dampens their appraisal for all of the other good things on your CV.
While there are a great many job roles where written ability is not important, it still looks sloppy in an application and could cost you a job. If writing isn’t your strong suit, then enlist the help of a spouse, friend or family member to give each application a once over.
So, there we have it, our top 7 biggest no-nos when looking for a new job. If you are a candidate or employer, why not tell us what you think is the biggest job search faux pas? Tweet us your responses @HunterSelection.