By Standard reporter
Looking for a job is a tricky affair. A small mistake or omission of a key detail in interview or CV can cost you a great employment opportunity.
And in a busy world where many employers have little time to scrutinise jobseekers’ strengths, recruitment experts say the applicant should be forthcoming with details that highlight their most important qualities.
Mr Perminus Wainaina, a recruitment consultant with Corporate Staffing Services, says the most critical stage that will win the job or disqualify you is how well you market yourself on your CV and the cover letter.
“The current job market is jam-packed with many qualified candidates in various fields,” says Wainaina. “A smart job seeker should not follow the crowd as this will make him part of the herd that stays jobless.”
He says to be an effective jobseeker, you should brand and market yourself. This should not be one-off, he said, but an ongoing project where you update your own brand by bringing yourself up to speed with changes in the job market, even after you secure employment.
“This way, you remain relevant and ahead of competition,” he says.
ICT professionals, for example, should stay abreast of their very dynamic field. With new technologies coming up rapidly, you should stay on top of trends not to be rendered obsolete.
The job-seeking strategy should begin in college where, as a student, you should make sure you undertake internships in your specific area of interest. This gives you a feel of the job. Professional networks created during the internship will prove invaluable when looking for a job.
“As a job seeker, interact with like-minded people who add value to your life as a professional. Register with professional organisations in your area of expertise and be part of a professional network,” advises Mr Wainaina. “Firms always seek to cut costs, and being part of a network will not only aid in getting inside information on a vacancy but may also provide recommendation from working members in the network.”
Even those already employed are not safe, says Wainaina, as they face the constant challenge of retaining their jobs, if not getting a promotion. The only way to achieve this goal is value-addition.
Whether by helping in cutting costs or bringing in new business, the employer must see value in keeping you on the payroll.