The rules have changed. Read on to find out how you can adapt to the changes and increase your chances of getting an interview.


Employers sure haven’t been playing nice with job hunters since COVID-19 started. The biggest mistake I hear is that there is no response from employers at all when you apply for a job. There could be several reasons why your application is being ignored (Read Forbes article Employers Ignoring Your Resume? 5 Mistakes to Avoid). 

The competition when you apply for a job has dramatically increased. A typical online job ad receives about 250 resumes, but magnet companies like Apple, Google, Amazon, Facebook can get over 1,000 applications per opening. But no matter what, shame on employers for not even sending an automatic email saying they got your resume. Not being able to set up in-person interviews where they can meet you has lengthened the job search process. Job hunters are complaining about getting 5, 6, or even eight interviews before the company can make up their mind. And as rude as it is, sometimes the employer does not even respond to you until you ask them if they’ve decided after all those interviews.

Whether you are a baby boomer, a millennial, or somewhere in between, you need to understand how job hunting and hiring has changed. Here is a list of recommendations to help you deal with these changes and be successful.

What is THE most effective way to job hunt now?

Networking has been and still is the best way to land a new job. 70% of all jobs are never advertised. Begin by making a list of people you can ask for help. Look at friends, neighbors, colleagues, and LinkedIn connections. Next, know the job you want and reach out to your network, asking for help. Using your contacts to ask for referrals to hiring managers, HR, or a recruiter pays off. According to Career Pivot, referrals have a 50% chance of getting an interview, whereas others with no connections have only a 3%. Referrals are only 7% of the applicants, but Jobvite reports that 40% of new hires come from the referral pool. Resource to check out: Here Is A LinkedIn Secret Weapon To Land A Job

With so much more competition for each job, your resume must get through the applicant tracking system known as ATS. That means you have to be very careful not to use a creative style resume or a format that is not going to work with ATS. Do not use tables, columns, headers, footers, graphic or creative designs. The employers’ ATS can’t read these items. Pay attention to the job ad and highlight the specific skills and experience that the employer wants. Think about the work tasks you have done in the past. Between the two, you should be able to identify the appropriate keywords. Make sure you add them to your resume. Once an employer glances at your resume, you have 15 to 20 seconds for them to respond or move on to the next person. The best way to capture attention is to have a very targeted resume that emphasizes the results you have achieved in your past jobs. Employers believe if you have made significant accomplishments in the past, you are likely to do the same for them. Check out this resource: Resume Quiz To See If Employers Will Respond To Your Resume

How has Job interviewing changed?

All interviews are now conducted online. This has proven to be a lot harder for an employer to make their decision when they can’t see you in person. Employers are adding on more interviews, and some are also using an interview question video response before you even talk to the hiring manager. Be prepared for senior-level executives to be part of your interview process. Have work stories ready about your accomplishments. Many times employers are asking situational questions, and you will need these stories to answer them appropriately. Write out your answers to questions in advance so that you can be ready to answer when you’re staring at them online. Highly recommend that you have created a 60 Second Sell. This is like an elevator pitch, but more focused. You select your top five selling points, link them together in a few sentences, and to develop a verbal business card to answer the questions, Tell us about yourself, or Why should we hire you. The 60 Second Sell is also very effective in closing the interview. After the employer has finished asking their questions, you’ve asked yours, and it’s time to leave, and by saying “thank you for the opportunity to talk with you today, let me summarize for you what I would bring to this job. Boom you hit them with your 60 Second Sell, and you walk out the door. They are going to make notes about you, and you’ve just given them the best reasons to hire you.

Some employers have resorted to asking illegal questions. Here is an article that outlines this new reality: Covid-19 Has Employers Asking Illegal Interview Questions. Here Is What To Say

What about LinkedIn?

Everyone needs to have a completed LinkedIn profile as part of their career management. 98% of recruiters say that they are looking for talent on LinkedIn. That means you must have an up-to-date profile, current photograph, SEO-effective headline, the right information under experience that will market you to the employer. Personal branding is essential in creating your LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn won’t be beneficial to your search if you do not have a large number of contacts. That number seems to be somewhere between 300 and 500 connections. Think about who you know, and look at who your contacts know, then send out invitations asking to connect. LinkedIn can provide you with a lot of connections and possible referrals in your job search. You can look for someone who works at a company that you want to apply for and is in your network. So expanding and creating more contacts is an excellent idea. For more help on How to Create An Effective LinkedIn Profile, check out these detailed guidelines.


Original article here 

Author: Robin Ryan, Forbes