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When You Have Competition From Other Candidates, Here’s What To Do

Posted by Glassdoor Team

Career Advice Experts

Last Updated May 14, 2020

You’ll do anything to get your dream job, and you‘ll probably have to because everyone else wants the same dream job as you.

On average a single job posting can get 250 applicants, so already you’re competing just to get your application seen. If a job vacancy is at a top company who is a preferred employer then the competition heats up immensely, sometimes applicants could be in the thousands.

You have to stand out if you don’t then you’re not going to get the call you desperately want.

Follow these steps to make sure you’re in with a good chance:

Polish up your LinkedIn profile

Include your LinkedIn profile link on your application but before you do make sure it’s completely up to date and showcases you in the best possible way. Your profile picture should be a professional headshot; this is your online greeting, it should be welcoming, a smiling picture works better than a non-smiling one. Follow the picture with a good summary which will attract the recruiter to read more about you. Use every part of your linked profile to promote yourself.

Create a video

Sometimes going that extra mile is the only way you’re going to make things happen and video is a good way to get noticed. There are different ways to use video, the most straightforward is a video CV, it's just you talking about your work experience and your achievements. You don’t even have to be in the video; you could create a presentation of your achievements and do a talk-over. Another style is the showcase video; it's where you video your skills and talent, it could be a speeded-up video of a whole process. There are plenty of examples of video styles on Youtube to take inspiration from and no fancy equipment needed, a smartphone can easily do the job.

Learn from others

There have been many success stories of people using online tactics to get noticed by their dream employers; you can get some ideas from them for yourself.  

Elski Felson used Snapchat to showcase his skills.

Jeanne Hwang created a Pinterest Board to showcase her experience

One of the most famous candidates is Alex Brownstein; he played on the vanity of people Googling themselves. He bought Google PPC adverts using the names of his favourite creative directors as keywords and added the message “Googling yourself is fun, hiring me is fun” He got his dream job and his total investment was just $6

Get connected

Sometimes it simply boils down to who you know; it’s always good to be well connected.

Connect to employees who work at the place where you want to work; it’s a good tactic, they could end up putting a word in for you with the hiring manager. Make your connections online by following the company you want to work at on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn; also, make sure to go along to any of the company open days or networking events, this is an excellent way to get your foot in the door.

Chase the dream, not the job

If you get to the interview stage and you get asked the question “Why are you interested in this job?” your answer will probably be similar to many other candidates. The reason for that is, the majority of people chase the job, and not the dream. When you chase the dream, your answer will have real meaning. Good answers come from a fire in the belly, they have passion, and they’re the answers people want to hear.

“I’ve researched your product thoroughly, it’s exciting, and I believe that I can help you achieve the goal of selling it globally because…” sounds better than “ Because you’re a recognised brand.”

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