“What the heck do they want from me?” That’s the question on the mind of job candidates. You want to know what hiring managers are looking for in an applicant and how to demonstrate your best qualities.
Here are some general guidelines to consider:
- During an economic slowdown, hiring companies are looking for ways to save money
- During an upturn, new revenue, customers and performance improvement are key
- Companies want their requirements met, but at the lowest cost
- Some overqualified candidates will apply, which means stiffer competition
- The supply/demand equation is currently at work, tilted against applicants
- Electronic resumes are receiving less attention because of the overwhelming volume
- Other approaches have become more advantageous
Some information you may need:
- Recruiters work for the companies, not the applicants
- Companies want applicants to provide results beyond the basic requirements
- Applicants must articulate clearly what they have accomplished and how they apply
- Companies want people to learn and add value quickly without too much training
- Candidates need to “bond” quickly and establish a positive working relationship
- Applicants must show integrity and honesty in their past work history
- Employers want to see the “metrics” behind the “activities”. Saying you implemented a cost saving plan isn’t enough. Saying you “decreased cost by 8%” is better. Saying you, “reduced cost by 8% through a detailed plan within 15 months” is best.
- Be able to succinctly define how you accomplished your results in the past. Hiring managers are interested in not only the “what”, but also in the “how”. Communicate the alternatives, pro’s and con’s, cost/benefits, and method of implementation.
- They want to know if you’re a team player, a loner or a group contributor?
- You’ll need to “fit” the culture and the organizational style
So, how do you show your best stuff? Present yourself in a way that is compelling: Resume, cover letter, telephone interview and in-company interviews. Demonstrate results not just a list of responsibilities. Be a team player. Establish a positive persona and relationship with everyone. Fit the culture and management style.
In short, be more than what they are looking for, with measurable results to show them.
Send for a free resume review to Bill Kaufmann: firstname.lastname@example.org