You have experience, skills and continue applying to positions you know you are qualified for, with little results. In 2017, the U.S. unemployment rate continued to drop lower than it’s been in 17 years, reaching a new low of 4.1% last month. While there are more job openings available these days, many job seekers still struggle to land the right job, as opposed to any job. If you are currently looking for a job and feel like you aren’t getting anywhere, there are some simple ways to give yourself a bigger advantage over other candidates that you may not be aware of. Here are some of the top advantages for job seekers to have in 2017:
1) Create a killer cover letter
If you have a top-notch resume but are still struggling to get noticed by potential employers, an attention-grabbing cover letter may be the missing link you need to get ahead in your job search. One of the best advantages for job seekers is having a cover letter that immediately addresses what interests you about the job and why you are a good fit. Include an example of an experience you had in a past job that clearly demonstrates your ability, and don’t be afraid to get creative and let your personality shine through. This will help you become more than just a resume to a potential employer. For advice on how to create an attention-grabbing cover letter, along with a sample cover letter to help guide you, click here.
2) Brush up on your customer service training
In any business, a satisfied customer is more important than anything. If a business’s customer base isn’t happy, they will have a hard time achieving any success. Companies like Goodwill Industries of New Mexico are passionate about creating advantages for job seekers with their free two-week customer service training course. These courses are “specifically designed to prepare individuals for a customer service role in nearly any industry including retail, hospitality, and the rapidly expanding call centers.”
Customer service training is a very valuable advantage for job seekers even if you aren’t applying for a job in customer service. Many companies like their employees to have a good understanding of customer service to help them understand what they are working for, and who they are serving. If you don’t have access to a customer service training program like this one, you can find free online customer service training courses (as well as training for many other skills as well that can you an advantage in your job search) on websites such as Alison.com and Lynda.com.
3) Volunteer work
One of the best advantages for inexperienced job seekers is volunteering for an organization. It gives you a chance to learn skills, bulk up your resume and make professional connections for your job search. You can choose to volunteer for a non-profit organization in a similar department to the job you are applying for, or you can call companies you are interested in working for and see if they could use your help for a period of time without pay.
4) Staffing agencies
Even if you don’t end up finding the job of your dreams through one, using a staffing agency is one of the most valuable advantages for job seekers. They don’t cost you anything, can give you great resume advice, offer interview tips, and have a wealth of inside information on the job industry. If they do help you land a job, headhunters at staffing agencies can also help you negotiate your job offer to possibly get a better salary and benefits package.
Author: Jessica Cody
Jessica Cody, a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, has a background in online marketing and public relations. Currently, she works at VHMNetwork LLC in the role of Marketing Analyst. She is a graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she studied Journalism and Political Science. She is also an avid runner with a passion for the outdoors.