Photo by / Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Your LinkedIn and Online Presence

Its always good to go back to the basics, so be sure to update your LinkedIn with a professional head shot.

Next, expand your presence for recruiters to find you. LinkedIn has a feature to inform recruiters that you are actively looking for job opportunities. Learn more about this feature here and at the LinkedIn blog here.

Polish Your Resume and Include a Cover Letter

Let’s face it, the work environment has changed drastically over the last several months. Tailor your CV to match. Did your college classes pivot to an online format where you learned how to use video conferencing software and various online platforms? These are tangible, and transferable skills that you can take with you into the office. You became proficient with Microsoft Teams, Zoom, WebEx — list them on your resume!

The Star Method.

The Star Method is perfect for answering situational interview questions. For each bullet point on a resume, be able to map it out in the following way during an interview:

  1. What was the goal/objective?

  2. What was your role/responsibilities?

  3. And finally, what was the result/impact? Even better if you can quantify this with statistics. Tailor your responses and on paper CV to follow suit.

Also, think back to how you can apply your experience and skill set specifically to the role you for which you’re applying. This includes how you position your resume.

Why are you the best fit and what can you bring to the table? Highlight your different background and perspective. Its all about how you can align your experiences to explain how you are uniquely qualified for the role.

Leverage Company Recruiters — and Reach Out

Often times recruiters will provide their contact information within the bio section of their LinkedIn profile. Do some research on your company of interest and see if you can find any recruiters that match your job level. If you are looking for an entry-level position post-graduation, target a University Recruiter. Maybe you are applying for a specific program. In that case, see if you could find the individual doing the recruiting for that position.

Once you find those individuals, send a tailored copy of your resume. Be sure to briefly describe why you are interested in their company and let them know if you have submitted an application. Be sure to state the exact position. In addition, you can highlight your key accomplishments within the body of the email. This way, even if the recruiter does not open your attached resume, they can easily skim through your highlights.

If nothing else, this approach can provide you with name recognition as the company recruiter is combing through applicants.

Crushing the In-Person Interview

I remember going into an in-person interview, where in order to keep my hands free, I left the extra copies of my printed resume in my car.

I was dressed professionally, my responses to anticipated questions were practiced in advance, and I knew my resume inside and out. By this point, I was a self assessment, multiple video recorded questions, and a group case study interview into the application process. I remember thinking, surely by now the company would have a sound understanding of my work experience.

However, when I sat down with a senior member of the team, she asked me for a hard copy of my resume. I remember blushing with embarrassment. It was a simple mistake, but explaining to my interviewer that I did not bring a copy with me made me appear unprepared — something any interviewee would hope to avoid.

While my answers to her questions seemed to meet expectations, I asked her at the conclusion of my interview what I could have done better. She told me that while impressed with my experience, she would have liked to have seen my resume. While my hard work and achievements brought me to an in person interview, my lack of preparation affected how I presented myself. Needless to say, I learned my lesson. Always bring an extra copy (or two) of your resume. (For more advice on interviews, check out how to ace a group case study here.)

Parting Words on Job Hacks

Get involved in your desired field’s community. If all else fails… network and find a reference. Apps like Blind make it easy to ask direct questions about companies, culture, fields — and even bluntly asking for a job referral from current employees.

In today’s job market, its not just who or what you know, but playing the game. (For tips on negotiating offers and how to become a stronger applicant in the analytical world, check out this.)

This article was origninally published on Medium