Tips for Staying Current with Digital Recruitment
The process of job search used to be so simple. A hand-delivered resume, brief meeting with a hiring manager and completion of a hard-copy application form has now been replaced with digital resumes, online application forms and the development of a professional brand on LinkedIn and other social media platforms. Not surprisingly, job seekers of all ages are frustrated wondering how to keep up, fit in and compete in today’s market. While the challenges are very real and understandable, there are strategies for dealing with this transition. Hopefully, the following list will help you develop an understanding and techniques for addressing the challenges associated with digital recruitment.
- Acceptance, Acceptance, Acceptance: While some small to medium-size employers still recruit employees using a more personal approach, it is definitely not the norm. Most of the time you will be expected to apply online, email a resume, possibly complete online testing and ensure an appropriate online presence. The sooner you embrace current methods of recruitment, no matter how impersonal they seem, the more success you will have competing with other candidates.
- Learn how to save a document, email your resume and navigate the internet: Having a family member send resumes and manage your responses is not helping you to develop the computer skills many jobs require. Look for free computer training in your community and develop some basic computer knowledge.
- Understand that your resume is in a state of constant revision: While a great deal of time and care is spent in completing your resume, the need to constantly make revisions exists. Tailoring your resume for each posting, with regard to using industry-specific terminology, key words and outlined qualifications, is imperative in order for the employer to understand that you are an ideal match.
- Recognize that when online tools are used, candidates are chosen by computers not people: This is the reason keywords are SO important. Read the job description carefully and ensure that the information you are including compliments the requirements outlined. For more information on How to Write a Resume that Passes the Artificial Intelligence Test, check out this link.
- Conduct research to determine what keywords/terminology to use for your cover letter, resume, application form and social media profiles. Utilizing the search bar on sites such as indeed.com, jobbank.gc.ca and LinkedIn.com will provide access to current job postings. Review at least 10 postings to determine consistent terminology, requirements and job duties. Your ability to ‘walk the walk and talk the talk” makes you sound like you fit in.
- Master the art of online applications. Most employers are going to refer you to their website to complete an online application. It is imperative that you fill out all sections, highlight relevant skills, accomplishments and credentials, and incorporate experience that aligns with their job postings.
- Get a Skype account. In the event that you are asked to complete an online interview, it is helpful for you to have experience with the platform.
- Google your name on a community computer to see what type of online image your prospective employer will find. Having a positive online image highlights your technical skills, creativity, personality and passions. If you are hesitant to provide employers with information about your personal life, creating a LinkedIn account is a great way to exhibit your skills and maintain your professional network. Ensure that you are willing to commit to using social media on a regular basis if you plan to sign up. While having an online presence can demonstrate your technical ability, posting inconsistently on any social media platform can be counterproductive.
- Identify skill gaps and take courses. Pursue seminars and workshops to update your knowledge base, learn current software or learn more about the sector. EPC offers the 50+ Club, Creating a Positive Digital Footprint Workshop, LinkedIn workshop and On the Job Club. Each workshop highlights current strategies for ‘standing out’ in today’s job market.
- Address the issue of ageism. Use current terminology, current resume formats and the current industry terms associated with your profession.
- Identify the areas you need a little help with. Contact a local employment agency for one to one assistance with a wide range of employment-related challenges. Support with the completion of online applications, online assessments and creating a LinkedIn profile can help you ensure you are putting your best food forward.
- Utilize free resources and online sites to build up your knowledge base or retain your skill level. Read blogs, view videos, take free courses and complete free assessments (ie. typingtestcom).
- Set alerts, sign up for company newsletters, research company websites and social media feeds. This will provide you with valuable information including their hiring status, a contact person, company culture and values and the process for applying. In addition, you can remain up to date regarding industry trends, best practices, company expansions/relocations and hiring fairs.
- For the best of both worlds, combine cold call with your online job search. Because most employers still do not advertise using both approaches will increase effectiveness and exposure to more employers.
- Recognize and give yourself a pat on the back for what you already know. Our lives are filled with technology…online banking, viewing photos on Facebook, emailing friends and family, listening to Spotify, watching YouTube and Netflix, booking hotel rooms online, reading reviews and ordering from Amazon to name a few. If you do any of these things, you have already embraced technology at some level. Adapting to online recruitment is doable as well.