Parent’s Guide to Getting a Job in This Recessionary Economy
Parent’s Guide to Getting a Job in This Recessionary Economy
I’m not a hiring manager by trade nor did I have any previous experience in human resources. So I had to set up the process from start to finish to hire an assistant and a tech person.
Basically, the first thing I had to do was ask my client what kind of employee he was looking for, what the ideal qualities were, and then base the decision on my own feel as to what kind of personality type would fit in best at his company.
Then I had to post a Craigslist ad, direct them to a survey, and then start calling candidates back for interviews.
This is the story of how I filled those two positions and the things which stood out to me for those candidates who got interviews and those who did not so you can do what they did. These things give you a far better chance of getting the attention of recruiters and getting that job you want so you can keep your family in a good financial situation.
As a parent I’m sure you’re watching the news to “keep up with what’s going on and how it affects your family” but things aren’t as bad as they seem.
I know there’s definitely suffering going on out there and you may be one of the ones affected and possibly even had your job axed or been laid off.
The only advertising I did was post one ad on Craigslist for each position. And out of that I had over 653 candidates send their resumes.
That means they had a .3063% chance of getting a job …far below a 1% chance. I don’t know if you play the odds or not but in your parenting I definitely wouldn’t recommend playing those long of odds.
I know the economy has caused great competition for the few jobs available so here are the things which stood out to me:
1. Include in your signature file your phone number and e-mail address and if you have it the link to your personal website. This can be www.yourname.com and have your resume and other relevant details a recruiter would want to see.
I got very annoyed when I had a good candidate and I had to search through e-mails attempting to find a phone number. Make it easy by including your phone number in your e-mail signature. In every e-mail client I’ve seen today all you have to do is set this up once and it will be included in every e-mail you send.
If you worry about having it going out in regular personal e-mails set up a dedicated e-mail address just for your job search.
Make it a personal e-mail address with your name in it. I saw some e-mails like JT @ yahoo.com and others like SunGoddess @ Hotmail.com. Needless to say I was none too impressed with these.
The best thing you can do is have an e-mail like firstname.lastname@example.org. This way you look like a serious business person.
2. Extra credit — include a photo in your e-mail signature. This is so important because out of all the e-mails, I received over 650 for both positions, only two candidates included a photo in the e-mail signature. I definitely called those back and one of them hadn’t even filled out the survey. That’s how important standing out is. And how powerful this photo tactic is.
This humanizes you in the eyes of the recruiter and bonds you to them giving you a far greater chance to get called back.
Remember the only two candidates who did this I called back, meaning 100% of those who included a photo got on the phone with me. I can’t guarantee it’ll be 100% effective for you but I can guarantee it’ll give you a much better shot and you’ll definitely stand out from all the other applicants.
3. In your dedicated jobseeking e-mail account turn off all spam filters so you can be 100% certain you’re going to get any return communication from potential employers you’re sending resumes to. I had a couple of candidates I called who said they had never received my e-mail so didn’t know about the survey.
4. When answering a survey or when you’re on the phone talking with a recruiter be revelatory in your answers and truthful.
5. Have a YOU attitude. It’s all about the employer and what you can do for them. It’s about the value you can bring to bear for the company and the increase in profitability hiring you instead of anyone else will bring to the company.
6. Be BOLD. You want the position and make bold statements as to the value and skills you have to bring to the table which will help the company.
7. Be super confident. Answer any questions with confidence and go in with the mindset that you are the best candidate for the position and hiring anybody else just wouldn’t make sense. You don’t have to be overbearing about it but definitely confidently answer questions.
Another neat trick is at the end of the interview ask, “What time Monday should I come in to get started?”
One of the candidates asked me this and it immediately jumped her into the top three spots for the position.
8. Extra bonus credit — record a short 30 to 60 second video for the position explaining to the recruiter what you can do for their company.
Posting this on www.yourname.com is the best solution. If you don’t have a website post it to YouTube and link to it in the e-mail you sent. Also Include a link to your video:
- in your resume Word document
- your cover letter
- in the e-mail body text itself. Make sure they know you recorded a video to apply for this position AND they know where to easily find it.
None of the over 850 candidates had a video and I know this would allow you to stand out because I was looking for one thinking with that many candidates I’d have to see at least one industrious person who did this. But I did not.
I can hear you possibly whining now “but they cost money and I don’t have a camcorder.”
That kind of scarcity minded thinking is not what companies are looking for. Digital camcorders are so cheap these days and do a good quality job even with the lower level cameras so there’s no excuse.
I saw a Flip Mino HD for sale the other day for $220. I know anyone in America if they have the desire can get their hands on $220. And the quality of video the Flip Video MinoHD Camcorder produces is quite high especially for this lower price.
Bottom line, to get a job in this economy you have to really stand out because there’s more competition than ever for fewer spots than ever.
Borrow your kids friends or even your neighbors camcorder if you have to. Whatever you have to do to make yourself stand out and get that job isn’t your family’s well-being worth it?
These tips are things I saw which stood out to me and which will definitely help you stand out to the recruiters and human resource managers you have to impress.
Happy jobhunting and I look forward to any comments you have about tactics you’ve used to successfully get jobs or things you’ve done which recruiters have told you really stood out in their mind.