Women In Business

How to create a great job application

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Being women in the business world, we all know how much the landscape around us is ever changing; from customer expectations and evolving competitors to technology and the endless opportunities and new ways of working it brings with it. But one thing I have noticed in my time as a HR professional is how much harder it has become to climb the ladder and secure roles in an ever growing and increasingly competitive job market.

Gone are the days of organisations working from small pools of immediate well known talent which they hire from face value and the words on paper and a potential couple of internal endorsements. The job seeking world has changed, and if you want to be at the forefront of the game, you need to move with it.

So if you are putting yourself out there for a new role with a new company or even a new role within the same company, here are a few things to keep in mind to make sure your job application is robust, dynamic and setting you up for the best chance at success.

Have a development plan

You will never be at a point in your life where you know it all or can’t develop further. Being aware of your strengths and how you can leverage these and apply them to a business, as well as your areas for improvement and what you are actively doing to close this gap will demonstrate honesty, humility, self-awareness and commitment to ongoing development. 

All of these behavioural traits are desirable regardless of the technical skills sought and a progressive organisation with a growth culture will absolutely be looking for them.

Review your personal brand beyond your resume

Gone are the days when talking yourself up on a piece of paper is sufficient (or if it is, chances are the business you are in or looking at joining isn’t overly progressive). In a world where social media and technology is everywhere, be conscious of how you are representing yourself on personal and professional levels.

You would be surprised what these platforms reveal to someone when they are exploring your brand off paper, and as a HR professional I can absolutely assure you we do!

Update your resume

While it is now more a part of your application than the whole application in its entirety in comparison to ten years ago, it’s still a key component. Ensure you are tailoring it to the role you’re applying for, generic resumes give the impression of a lack of desire for the role or understanding of what it entails and old hands like myself can pick up the minimal effort that has gone into them immediately.

It is also important to think about how your role translates; discussing your successes versus your tasks and responsibilities, especially if you are going for a role inside the same industry where it is common knowledge what your role entails day to day. And lastly avoid outdated practices like using marital status and dependants that aren’t relevant to your ability to be successful in the role.

LinkedIn

If you don’t have a LinkedIn account already, you need to get one.  It is the ultimate way to add dimension and credibility to your resume, network and build your personal brand.  If utilised to its fullest, it also provides you the ability to grow and develop via groups and content all whilst allowing those you are connected to oversight to your interests, activity and anything you post, painting a tangible picture of your style and approach.

About Carly Green

A senior HR business partner, young mother and wife with an incomparable zest for life, Carly Green is an advocate for women in the workplace. Carly is a leader passionate about integrating motherhood and career and shares this with a broad network of professional females. Her personal mission: to show that you can successfully have both, if you want to.

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