When the Resume May Not Be Enough

Everyone who applies to a job sends in a resume.  Most people also send in a cover letter and in some industries are asked to show a portfolio.  So how do YOU stand out from the crowd?

When I was applying to marketing positions I would come in with a PowerPoint slide that included all of my social networking profiles. I would bring in samples of my work from previous companies, and if I got far enough, I would present the interviewers with a 30-60-90 plan that outlined what I hoped to accomplish in the job in the first 30-60-90 days.  This showed my interest in the job and that I was ready to get started today if need be.

So what does Alesia Benedict from GetInterviews.com suggest when it comes to standing out from the crowd?  Well, here are her 5 tips:

1. Plan Your Strategy.

“Review all the positions to which you have applied and analyze them for similarities and differences. Compare these trends with your skills, experiences, and goals. How closely does your skill set match with your job search?  If your search appears disjointed or lacks coherence, most employers will consider this as indicative of your future performance on the job! Match your skills as closely as possible to available jobs to maximize your efforts.”

2. Create a List.

“Targeting your job search with specific goals is just as critical well into the process as it was during week one. Writing down your goals can focus your efforts more effectively and help you present a more powerful image to potential employers. Creating a list will also allow you to follow up in person with potential employers, an action that will set you apart from the majority of candidates being considered for the position.”

3. Invest in the List.

“Your earlier analysis of skills and experiences will help you identify any potential areas of training that may help you stand out from the competition. Go beyond the initial job description for the position of interest to learn more about the company’s presence in the local community. Although employers are primarily interested in your on-the-job value, if you are able to engage them in conversations about corporate philanthropy, you are demonstrating a deeper understanding of the company’s values, prompting them to invest in you as well!”

4. Showcase Accomplishments that Align with Corporate Projects.

“A resume is an effective tool to help you open doors, but in order to do so it must be closely aligned with the company’s mission, values, and top-notch projects. Edit your resume so that only the most meaningful accomplishments are included. Many job candidates become emotionally attached to certain achievements, often from early in their careers. But the fact that you earned ‘Rookie of the Year in Sales’ when you were just out of college will do little to land the job. ”

5. Go Beyond the Resume.

“Finally, no matter how outstanding your resume is, these days it often takes more than a great resume to land the job. Brainstorm how you can make yourself stand out beyond the resume. In addition to including the personal contact noted above, this step may also include creating white papers that outline potential areas of improvement for the company. Or you may consider branding opportunities for yourself – from business cards to promotional items to lunch or treats for the helpful staffers you have met along the way.”

What did you do today?

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