Whenever you ask someone how to best present yourself in a job application or interview they will often respond with ideas such as “dress for the job you want” or “perfect your elevator speech.” While these are important aspects of the job hunt, there are additional parts of this process that you should be aware of. Based on personal experience and advice directly from hiring managers, here are a few points to keep in mind during your job search.
With the rise of social media, it is very easy to do a quick Google search to find out more about a candidate’s background — professional and personal. Make sure there is no inappropriate content associated with your profiles before inviting hiring teams to delve into your digital life. You need to establish and grow your personal brand as much as possible to accurately reflect who you are and why employers should be interested in you. Hiring managers do not want to see a candidate who frequently posts offensive or vulgar content. Always make sure to put your best foot forward — on and offline.
Remember to always be as polite as possible and practice the rules of good etiquette when you are at a potential employer’s office. This might sound like a no-brainer, but you would be surprised by how many people show up for in-person interviews and act cocky and disrespectful. While it is crucial to have confidence in yourself and your work, an inflated ego is a major deterrent for many employers.
Anyone you talk to at the company is a potential reference for you — good or bad. If you come into the office and are rude to the front desk, they will pass that information along to the hiring team. Also, people underestimate the importance of your behavior towards recruiters; but it is a recruiter’s job to be well connected. If you leave a negative impression, you will not only lose their interest, but you are also effectively burning bridges to all the people in that recruiter’s network.
When you find a job that looks like a good fit, try and track down someone on LinkedIn who you know from that company or someone who might be able to introduce you to a current team member. In doing so, you have the potential to receive an internal referral for the position as well as establish a rapport with the team.
Reaching out to current employees shows initiative and that you are willing to go the extra mile to get the job. That being said, do not email every single person from the company and do not email them too frequently. You want to maintain a healthy balance of correspondence, meaning that if you talked with someone on a Monday afternoon, don’t call them back Tuesday morning to see if there are any updates. Additionally, you don’t want to turn into a ‘stalker’ candidate. If you call the front desk, the hiring manager, and the recruiters every day about the same position, they probably won’t want to work with you in the future.
Passion and attitude can really sell hiring managers on a candidate. It is very evident when someone is truly excited about a position or the research a company is doing. If an interviewee comes in with a lukewarm attitude, that will be reflected in how the hiring team sees your potential at the company. At the end of the day, anyone can accomplish a task, but it takes a passionate person to become an integral part of a company.
Looking for more tips to help you find the perfect job faster? Check out the Sci.bio blog now!
Your LinkedIn profile is often the first thing recruiters will look at to learn more about you and your experience. So polishing up your profile can make all the difference when trying to establish lasting impressions.
Much like resume preparation, you want your profile to pop! Recruiters and hiring managers go through droves of applicants each day. You need to ensure you do not get passed over because of a sloppy LinkedIn profile.
Here are some key aspects for enhancing your LinkedIn profile:
1. Quality Headshots
Your profile picture should be indicative of how you present yourself in the workplace. This doesn’t mean you have to run out and get professional headshots taken. Instead, you want to make sure you are using a photo with a purposeful setting. Position yourself in such a way that you have complementary lighting as well as a simple backdrop. Try to avoid grainy group pictures that need to be awkwardly cropped to include only you.
“Statistics show that LinkedIn members with a photo receive far more engagement: 21 times more profile views and 9 times more connection requests.” – LinkedIn.com
2. Brief yet Informative
Again, recruiters go through tons of profiles. Make sure to include key points at each position and leave it at that. You want to present the cliff notes of your background and not an autobiography. If your highlighted skills are of interest, they will reach out and ask for more in-depth information on your background.
3. Creative Summary
Your summary statement is at the very top of your profile and you can use this to quickly grab people’s attention. Do not only say things like “Research Scientist – Cell Biology.” This is uninformative, broad, and lacks personality. Viewers want to not only see your professional experience, but they are also looking to get to know you as a person.
“You get 2,000 characters total for your summary, but only the first three lines display by default. That means you either need to pack the most essential information in up front, or you need to create suspense This encourages profile viewers to click the Show more link… Customizing your headline also gets you to All-Star status (assuming you’ve completed all of the steps listed in the last section), which, according to LinkedIn, makes your profile 27 times more likely to appear in recruiter searches.” – Zapier.com
4. Banner Image
Most people do not change the banner portion of their profile. While the default LinkedIn banner image is appropriate, spicing it up is a great way to stand out from other profiles. You could include cover art from a paper you were on or your favorite fluorescent image of cells you work with. The key is to keep it professional.
5. Joining Societies and Groups
There are thousands of society and group pages on LinkedIn. Join pages that are applicable to your work, such as the American Chemical Society or local groups for networking. You’ll be surprised at how many connections you can make online through common groups.
“There are around 2 million groups on LinkedIn and nearly 90% of users are a member of at least one group. It’s like a field ready to harvest when you join groups where your perfect market is and with a small amount of engagement and adding value you can start generating clicks through to your profile. Don’t make groups all about you and what you’re currently doing but add value to its members and they will want to check you out!” – Linkedin.com
6. Link to Other Digital Work
You worked hard for your publications! They should be showcased. You can include publications and patents on your LinkedIn profile. You can also add in a link to your Google Scholar profile or e-portfolio. Make sure to cross-pollinate as much as possible so that it is very easy for viewers to find your publications.
7. Keep your Information Up to Date
This point cannot be stressed enough! If you have a new position, location, certification, etc., you need to update your profile with this information. Including all your updated information makes it much easier for recruiters to identify jobs that fit you best. It also makes it easy for them to contact you. Make sure things such as your email and phone number are updated so that you aren’t getting job listings sent to an email you never open anymore.
The Reward of Enhancing Your LinkedIn Profile:
Your online presence is a critical component to initial sourcing for positions. Setting up a professional LinkedIn profile with key information and easy-to-access links to your portfolio is imperative. Having a sloppy profile can give recruiters and employers the wrong first impression. Shoot for a blend of essential information and personality. This way viewers see you and your experience. Try and customize your profile as much as possible! Your goal is to entice viewers with your skills and expertise in such a way that you are memorable.