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  • Writer's picturePenny Langstaff

4 Ways To Make Your Job Application Stand Out

Updated: Aug 28, 2023

Standing out from a crowd with your job application

In Seek’s NZ Employment Dashboard Report for July, it stated that national job ads month on month were 4% lower and 26% lower compared with July 2022. However, the number of applications per job ad month on month increased 11%. This means that for some jobs in some locations, you could be facing more competition when applying.

Here’s how you can ensure you make a good impression and make your job application stand out.

The "Right" Job

Be selective about which jobs you apply for and ask yourself "Why am I applying?" "What appeals about it?" "Will it give me what I'm looking for?"

Interpreting job ads is also important, because if you know what to look for in the wording you can usually identify if the role is too senior/junior, the type of environment you'd be working in, type of industry etc

Your skills and experience don't need to exactly match the role requirements, but if the job is different to what you've been doing or you're looking for a career change, make sure you write a really good cover letter explaining your situation and why you're applying.

You'll increase your chances of getting shortlisted if your CV or Resume and cover letter show that you're skills and experience are a close match for the role.

Your Cover Letter Just as important as your CV or Resume, this document can set you apart from other candidates. Always make sure: - your cover letter is addressed and written specifically for that application - the content is adapted & relevant to the job

Submitting a cover letter that relates to a completely different role or company is likely to put your application to the bottom of the pile – no matter how good your skills and experience. Likewise, attaching a “master” cover letter that hasn’t been adapted implies that you don't really want this particular job but just any job! Both of these indicate a lack of care and attention to detail which is something nearly every job requires.

Your CV or Resume Content is key. You can have the flashiest looking document, but if the content doesn’t “sell” you for the job, it means nothing. You may be applying for 2 jobs with the same job title, but the company and requirements will vary – even if only slightly. Read the advert carefully and adapt the content of your document for each application.

Your LinkedIn Profile & Social Media Pages Usually viewed by recruiters and companies alongside your CV and cover letter. Make sure your LinkedIn Profile is up to date with good content and a “professional” photo - and don’t forget to complete the “About” section. It’s a great place to promote yourself outside of your CV or Resume.

In terms of social media, check your profiles and posts are “employer friendly”. No point submitting what looks to be a professional application when your social media page(s) convey the complete opposite! So to sum up, if you want your job application to be successful and to get you to the top of the shortlist pile, you need to think carefully about every application you make and and submit documents that are well-written and relevant to the role you're applying for.

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