What do recruiters look for when trying to fill coveted, high-paying positions at the best companies?
I talked to a professional recruiter to find out.
The following list reveals what an experienced recruiter reviews before even considering someone for a position. Take a peek at what he looks for in an ideal candidate. Then, use the takeaway advice to improve your appearance and upgrade your professional positioning to get recruiters to start knocking on your door.
1. A Detailed & Distinct Resume
“The most obvious thing, an updated resume quantifying successes and what you bring to the table is still the most common way to be seen my a recruiter. Do not give vague descriptions; put a number to each success to show your value and scope of work. The resume is also the best place to include experience with specific technologies and other keywords that recruiters will search for.”
Don’t Google “resume” and fill in your document with the most generalized list of objectives and skills. Focus in on details of your past work that aren’t obvious, and quantify your successes.
2. Social Media Couth
“It shouldn’t need to be said, although I have heard too many stories of candidates passed on by a recruiter due to negative feedback from what was found on a candidate’s social media pages. Make sure to clean them up or at least set them as private and make sure to search your name to ensure that there are no images that are uncovered that could hurt your personal brand.”
It’s not just your friends who are looking at your social media profiles. Make sure your profiles are set to private or only include information you would want a potential employer to see.
3. LinkedIn Visibility
“Arguably the most searched business social media network is LinkedIn and any professional looking for a position should have an account. In addition to having an account, it is essential to have a professional picture and as many references or recommendations as possible. It is very simple to add a professional picture and an account without a picture is reason enough to be looked over by potential hiring team members so make sure it is included and professional.”
If you aren’t on LinkedIn, it’s time. Fill in your complete profile, add keywords that relate to the potential job you want, and work on securing recommendations.
4. An Online Portfolio of Work
“No longer is this only for niche industries, having a personalized website showing your personal brand and work experiences is a smart way to stand out in the current job market. You will need to make sure that there is nothing proprietary about the information you are displaying although being able to show a prospective employer your abilities to express ideas and show understanding of programs prior to them hiring you can help spark their level of interest.”
Build your digital presence through a personally branded website or blog that shows off your past work, experience, knowledge, and expertise.
5. A Specific Educational Niche
“More than simply listing your Bachelors Degree from a specific University, I would recommend going as far as listing 5-8 specific courses that you took relevant to the position you are applying for. Not only will these courses show your knowledge of a specific topic, listing specific keywords might allow you to rank higher on a recruiter’s Boolean search and bring your resume to the top of their attention from various career sites.”
Don’t blanket your educational experience on your resume. Highlight courses and classwork that relate specifically to the job you want to get.
6. Collegiate Athletic Experience
“In addition to the completion of specific classes in college, I would highly encourage any previous college athletes to highlight their experiences from their days of competition. It doesn’t matter if you played Division 1 or Division 3 athletics, no college athlete is able to graduate without a demonstrated background in time management, self determination, going through struggles, teamwork, etc. The list can go on and on, and these qualities along with more are exactly what many recruiters and hiring managers want to see in a potential candidate.”
Don’t be shy about promoting your collegiate athletic experience. Realize that this is an attribute that hiring managers and recruiters love, so add it to your resume and professional digital profiles.
7. Volunteer Work & Impressive Activities
“Not everyone can play sports in college so highlighting other activities and volunteer experience is very helpful. While hiring managers are supposed to be neutral and hire the best person for the job, listing an activity that you participate in (such as triathlon training or playing jazz music, etc.) that the hiring manager also has an interest in could potentially put your profile over the top if compared to another candidate without any of the same interests.”
Again, don’t shy away from putting some of your personality into your professional appearance. Who you are will help you get the job as much as what you know.
Looking for a job is one of the hardest jobs. So, it helps to have recruiters out there doing half of the work for you. Use these answers to the question, “What do recruiters look for?” to position yourself to be more available for hiring opportunities.
Even if you aren’t currently looking for a job, these tips will help you stand out, get noticed, and maybe even land a dream job you didn’t even know you wanted. And, it improves the chances that you can start your very own Indie Career.
Ready to get noticed now?
Recruiters are looking for candidates like you. But they can’t find you if you aren’t putting yourself out there. So, set yourself up to get noticed and get the job by launching a professional web presence using this Free 5-Day #GoPro Online Presence Challenge.