Be prepared, be best candidate for any job

By Samantha Roberson, Managing Editor for Online

In a world full of applicant tracking softwares and job description keywords, it can be hard to stand out as a job applicant, even if you meet the qualifications. The job search is similar to a video game, and here are some tips on how to win.

Adjust your resume for each position

If you’re uploading the same resume for each position, you’re doing it all wrong. After reading a job or internship description, you should edit your resume to reflect the keywords used in the posting. Many companies use an ATS, meaning if certain words aren’t in your resume, it’s immediately tossed out. Just remember when editing your resume to always be truthful about the experience and skills you have. If the edits end up making your resume more than one page, go back and delete points that aren’t relevant to the job. Lastly, don’t forget to always keep your original resume.

Always submit a cover letter, even if not required

Cover letters can be tedious, but oftentimes it’s what sets you apart from other applicants. In a cover letter, you have the opportunity to elaborate on your experience and address any points of weakness in your resume. It also gives you another chance to use those keywords found in the job description.

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Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date

If you don’t have a LinkedIn profile, go make one right now. A lot of hiring managers use LinkedIn to not only recruit employees but also to find out more information about applicants. You can also use it to network with people who work at companies you’re interested in.

Get your resume reviewed

You’re probably proud of your resume, but that doesn’t mean it can’t use some tweaks. The Career Center does resume reviews where they can help with formatting, what to include, and how to better describe your experience and qualifications. This semester they’re offered via Zoom on a first come, first served basis.

Prep for an interview

Interviewing can be nerve wracking. Even if you’re extremely qualified, if the interview doesn’t go well, there goes your opportunity. You can prepare for interviews by writing down responses to commonly asked interview questions and coming up with a few questions to ask after the interview. 

Samantha is junior in Media.

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