Top 5 Strategies to Make Yourself More Desirable to Potential Employers

Hire Me I'm Worth It!

If you are in the market for a new job or career, you want to do everything you can to be as desirable as possible. You have to give employers a reason to hire you—or ideally, numerous reasons!

We’re going to share 5 no-fuss, surefire strategies to make you a job applicant worth hiring.

5 Can’t-Go-Wrong Ways to Increase Your Hireability

1. Get Educated—In today’s competitive job market, education is a must. Although you should have a minimum of a high school diploma or GED, you will have better luck getting the job you want if you have a higher education degree. Consider getting an Associate’s, Bachelor’s or Master’s degree. Not only does a degree help, but targeting it to the field and specialty of your choice will give you a better chance at getting the job that you want. For example, if you are interested in working in corrections, consider a criminal justice, corrections, or criminology degree. If time or money does not allow you to obtain a college degree or you want to supplement a current degree with additional education, consider a certificate, webinars, and free or low cost online courses, like the options that American Probation and Parole offers.

2. Clean Up Your Record—Increasingly employers are conducting background checks to determine what kind of person that you really are. These checks can include inquiries into your criminal record, driving record, credit report and web presence. Whether you agree with this practice or not, you should make sure that your record is not going to reveal any unsavory information that will reflect poorly on you as a job candidate. Start by previewing what they will see—pull your own records and do an online search for your name. See some red flags? Work to fix them. For criminal or driving records, it may be a matter of time until they drop off your record, but be prepared to explain these infractions if given the chance and to explain how you have rebounded since that time. Work on improving your credit report by paying down debt and paying your bills in a timely manner. Delete damaging online social media accounts, change social media privacy settings to minimize exposure to the general public, and be mindful about what you post online going forward.

3. Undergo a Resume Revision—Expectations for resumes change over time; your resume needs to change accordingly. It’s not enough to simply update a job description and date as the years pass. You need to make sure that your resume matches today’s standards. Looking for an easy way to see how your resume matches up? Check out this post from Jessica Holbrook Hernandez of Great Resumes Fast: 25 Best Resume Tips for 2014. Don’t feel equipped to revamp your own resume? Consider enlisting help from a resume expert or professional resume writer. They can assist you in putting forward your best possible self when you apply for jobs.

4. Become Well-Read—Want to impress prospective employers? Read up on your career of interest. Although a degree is important, you may not have learned in school everything there is to know. It’s vital to keep growing and learning, and reading is an excellent way to do so. Spend time reading books, magazines, research papers, and white papers. Read about key topics related to the field, as well as about potential employers. Stay current on news stories as it relates to your chosen career. Be knowledgeable about current practices, concerns, and topics of debate within your chosen field. By staying informed, you will be able to participate in productive conversations that may lead to you getting the job you desire. It also indicates your high level of interest in the field, which may increase the hiring manager’s interest in you as an applicant.

5. Networking Works—Networking can assist you in finding out about job openings and getting that initial job interview, but it can also make employers more likely to hire you. Mentioning the name of a contact in common or that you converse with individuals in your chosen field can indicate a number of things. First of all, it indicates that you are a sociable person who understands the value of communication and who knows how to build and maintain relationships. Second, it shows an advanced level of interest in your chosen career. Third, it may inspire trust in you if you know a contact that the hiring manager knows, especially if the contact is someone that the hiring manager respects. And finally, your networking can provide contacts to use as potential references when applying for jobs. The references will mean more if the individual is someone in your chosen career field.

Do What You Know You Should Be

These strategies are common-sense, but they are effective when used. We all know that we should be doing them if we want to increase our chances of getting hired, but often we get lazy or question how much employers really consider these factors.

The job market continues to be competitive, so if you are aspiring to gain a new position or embark on a fresh career path in 2014, it would be wise to take these tips to heart. When you cover your bases by implementing these important strategies, you make it easier to prove to employers why you’re worth hiring. Once you have mastered these job search “musts,” you can explore more creative options to get noticed by potential employers.

Which tip do you need to improve upon when it comes to your job search? How do you plan to improve your hireability in 2014? Please comment below and let us know what your job search game plan is.

Know someone who needs to improve their game when it comes to their career? Be the push they need by sharing this blog post with them.

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