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A too general CV can put you in a disadvantage from the other candidates competing with you for your dream job. So it is important that yours have a little more weight to win the employer’s attention. You can do this by adding some short courses that you can get for free online.
When searching for a new hire, different employers look for different things, but they’re all trying to answer the same overarching question: can this individual add value to my business?
As a strong potential candidate, it’s your job to help them reach the right conclusion. It can be a difficult task to set yourself apart from the crowd, but showcasing your completion of relevant online courses is a great starting point. With that in mind, here are three reasons why you should add online courses to your CV:
1. It makes for a better interview.
Employers use interviews to gauge the value you can add to their company, and it’s important to set yourself apart from the other applicants. It’s not every day that an interviewer sees a MOOC on a resume (though it is becoming more common). Adding relevant online coursework can really help you stand out. It’s unique and invites conversation, so be prepared to answer questions. You could expect to be asked:
What drove you to enroll in these courses and further your education?
What knowledge did you gain from the courses?
What can you do now that you couldn’t do before?
2. It displays a relevant set of skills.
Applicants often struggle to convey what they can actually do for a company. Speaking confidently about a skillset that you’ve developed can help guide interviewers in the right direction. It’s a clear-cut example of what you know and what you can get done.
Ronald, for instance, used MOOCs to develop a valuable skill set that he then added to his CV. He provided a practical example of exactly what he could do, and was able to convey the extent of his knowledge during the interview. With an important set of relevant skills, the interviewers knew that he was a good fit.
3. It shows character.
Pursuing professional education not only helps develop important skill sets, but it also exhibits good character.
Completing an online short course, in and of itself, is impressive. It demonstrates personal drive and discipline, intellectual maturity, curiosity, and a strong willingness to learn: all of which are important to employers. It’s difficult for interviewers to always gauge these qualities, but it’s what they’re trying to do. They want to see that you’re willing to go the extra mile, because that indicates passion, and passion indicates value.
How to register
The interview is one component of the job seeking process that most people love to hate.
While it serves as a sign from the employer that you are being strongly considered for a position, it also can be a source of angst for candidates who fear they’ll make mistakes that will cut them out of the running.
A great way to overcome the anxiety interviews produce is to begin feeling good about the process.
Need help getting there? Here are five ways to build confidence for an interview.
1. Conduct Research
One great way to build your interviewing confidence is by conducting plenty of research on the company you’re applying with and the position it’s offering. A common question interviewers ask is, “Do you know anything about our company?” Most times, candidates are forced to answer “No.”
If you’re able to share the company’s background information and showcase knowledge of its future goals for the position in question, you’ll undoubtedly catch the interviewer off-guard, in a great way!
2. Locate Sample Interview Questions
There are many sample interview questions floating around the Internet that can help you gauge the types of questions you could be asked. Take time to review those questions—and come up with great answers—to ensure the actual interview flows fluidly.
3. Practice Often
A great way to build your confidence for the interview is to practice before the big day. You can do this by answering questions in front of the mirror to read your own facial expressions and body language, or have a friend act as the interviewer to help you simulate the actual environment.
4. Make Sure You Have No “Skeletons”
An important step in preparing for your interview is being able to recall your own career history and discuss prospective goals with the company and in your professional life as a whole.
But as you look back over your career, be sure to research yourself online to ensure there are no skeletons on the Internet that could be brought up in your interview.
Remember, companies conduct background checks often via search engines, so it’s up to you to ensure your social networking profiles are professional, or private.
5. Decide What The Job Is Worth
You may assume that this tip refers to the amount you expect to be paid for the position. In fact, you may be asked about salary expectations, so it’s good to prepare an answer.
But aside from salary, it’s important to decide whether the job is worth handing over your password to a social networking site or other personal site, something that has become a trend for some employers.
Do you feel that sharing private information is worth it? Give this some thought before arriving at the interview.
In addition to taking the above steps, it’s great to find a professional outfit you feel comfortable wearing. Feeling good in your clothes and knowing you’ve fully prepared can work wonders in boosting your confidence before the big day.
So you’ve found a job you want, got your CV and cover letter done and applied…and they’ve asked you to come in for an interview. This is it: you’re closer to the job than ever. Now you just need to wow them. Let’s take a look at how you can stand out by nailing the interview.
We unconsciously form opinions of people pretty much as soon as we meet them.
This means that you need to get the introduction right. Be friendly and project confidence (you don’t have to actually be confident to do this), look the interviewer in the eyes and give them a firm handshake.
It has to be said: your personal hygiene matters. Shower. Shave. Get a haircut. Put on deodorant. Clean your nails.
We do these things as much for other people as we do for ourselves.
Dress well too. That doesn’t mean you have to wear a suit, but make an effort.
Clean clothes, ironed and pressed. It’s all about those first impressions.
Do your Research
If possible, research the company and what they do. Get a sense of what their strategies and business plans are.
Even try research the interview team – find out what they like, what they do.
If you share a hobby, mountain biking for instance, you may want to mention the last time you did it.
Just don’t say you Facebook stalked them!
Ask the right questions
Towards the end of the interview, you’ll be asked if you have any questions.
The worst possible answer is “nope, that’s all.” If you say that, you’ll look like you didn’t take the time to find out anything about the company and what they do, and that you don’t care that much about the job.
Here are a couple of questions you could ask:
Where do you see the company going in the next 10 years?
What would make someone a really successful candidate for this role?
How are decisions made here?
How does [current issue] affect your business?
What are the top 3 things about me that interested you?
Nail the follow-up
Interviewers are likely to see a lot of people. You want to (positively) stick in their minds.
The very same day, send a thank you note to them via email.
If possible, send them a physical thank you note via post as well.
That will serve as a second reminder of your interview.
It might not guarantee you the job, but it can’t hurt.
Getting your job interview right is just as important as nailing your CV and cover letter.
You need to make a good impression are really sell yourself as the perfect candidate for the role.
With these tips in mind, you should have no trouble.
Your CV is the first point of contact with a potential employer. They say first impressions do count, so make this one work for you.
- It’s a good idea to have your CV prepared well in advance of spotting any job opportunities, and certainly well ahead of any closing date, so that it is not undertaken in a rush. This ensures that the basics will be there to build on, and you can tailor the CV for each specific opportunity without too much additional work.
- You’ve probably heard this before, but it’s worth repeating because there are far too many examples of people who ignore the advice – do make sure you check it through (better still, get someone else to check it through) for clarity, spelling and grammar. Mistakes will send your CV into the waste paper basket (metaphorically if it’s electronic).
- Given that your CV needs to be tailored for each job opportunity, double check it through to make sure that you are have the right version for that particular company or organisation – there’s nothing worse than focusing on your people management skills, for instance, when the company in question is actually looking for someone to work on their own as a self-starter.
- Make your CV easy to read and interesting – employers will have many CVs to look at, so don’t make it difficult for them – instead, make it a pleasure; think about the font (and please don’t be tempted to go for a quirky choice!), size of type and density of text; avoid colours other than black.
- Short blocks of text work well, and bullet points are fine provided the list isn’t too long – again, use the ‘pleasure principle’ as your overarching guide.
- Tables are also OK for small amounts of text, but don’t overdo it.
- Use the selection criteria where possible to align the skills and experience on your CV with the job description – wherever you can, give examples of how you match the criteria (approach it like marking criteria – how high can you score?).
- A profile (or personal statement) can work well, but only if you have some relevant points to make. This could be used to demonstrate your enthusiasm and creativity (to compensate for lack of experience perhaps) or to show your passion and commitment – but it is important to avoid clichés and buzzwords.
- Don’t include a photo – unless it’s a modelling job you’re after!
- Aim for 2 pages of A4 max, and remember you don’t have to detail every qualification and piece of work experience – if you have a degree or higher, the grades you got for GCSE are probably not too important, so just list the number of passes and subjects.
- References at this stage aren’t essential and they will take up too much space – just say ‘references are available on request’ – recruiters won’t be needing references at the CV filtering stage.
- Remember that life experience can be just as relevant as job experience when it comes to many key skills – project management, budgeting, communication skills, for example, can be demonstrated in different ways – so be creative
- Don’t forget to highlight professional qualifications and any relevant Continuing Professional Development (CPD) – what training have you undergone recently that shows that your skills are up to date? This is particularly important if you have been unemployed for a while and the employer is concerned that you could be out of touch in a fast-moving industry.
- Don’t be afraid to ask friends and colleagues what they think your strengths are – and if they have any other comments or advice on your CV.
- Finally, don’t think of your CV as set in stone. If you progress to the next stage, ask for feedback on your CV – what worked, what jumped out, what was irrelevant to the potential employer – and hone your CV accordingly. And do share your experiences with others – blogs and websites are a great community resource; if you give to others, they will give back to you.
Remember, your CV is about bringing you and your experience to life, so give examples wherever possible, to help the potential employer quickly build a picture of you.
For you to get recognised by the employer, you need to have something different from the rest of the candidates. You can increase your chance to be hired by adding a little bit of skills and be self-motivated. Read further below and share this if you love these tips.
1.Advance Your Education
Training and education show potential employers that you take your professional life seriously. You can advance your education and improve your employability skills by getting a degree or certification, completing continuing education courses or participating in internships and work-study opportunities. You can also find a mentor, participate in professional development opportunities or join trade or industry associations that provide enrichment programs for members.
Organizational skills are vital to advancing your career. Improve your employability skills in this arena by volunteering to take leadership or coordinator roles in your workplace or community. Participate in long-range planning initiatives, strategic planning sessions or event management that can help you hone your skills in this arena.
3.Learn Teamwork Skills
The ability to perform well with colleagues is a sought-after trait by employers. You can develop your own teamwork skills by participating in steering committees, boards and councils or volunteer groups. Request assignment to group projects or participate in professional development seminars or programs that focus on building teamwork.
Improve Your Communication
Verbal and written communication skills are important in nearly every business or industry. You can improve your employability skills in this area by participating in public speaking forums such as Toastmasters, or volunteering to be a group spokesperson for a program or event. Take advantage of opportunities to give presentations and request constructive criticism and feedback from trusted colleagues.
Employees who are self-motivated and self-reliant are valuable assets to employers. Develop your own personal and professional goals and objectives and develop a course of action for achieving them. Request regular performance reviews and ask for input on how you can improve your skill sets and enhance your work product. Take the initiative on projects and meet deadlines without fail.
Regardless of the line of work you enter, professionalism and integrity are important skills to master. Join professional networking groups and leadership development programs. Take your business life seriously and learn how to effectively manage your time and deal with work pressures. Familiarize yourself with people in your industry whose level of professionalism you respect and work to emulate their action and behaviors.
6.Get Enrolled on Free Short Courses
There are plenty of organisations online that are offering free short courses that you can enroll and boost your CV hence you increase a chance of getting employment.
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