What to look out for as a job seeker next year
Published: 10 Feb 2016 By Georgina Bloomfield
The way we job hunt has changed dramatically over the last five to ten years. The digital age we live in means mobile phones, laptops and tablets are more advanced than ever before. They have become tools that not only help us keep an eye on old friends or play games, but can also enhance our careers in ways that were once never considered.
In 2017, technology is only going to get more advanced. If you’re looking for your next big job, you’ll need to be aware of the new methods that the competition is using to get ahead.
Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi everywhere
With huge networks like the London Underground now starting to implement free Wi-Fi on their trains, more people can use their devices literally on the go, whenever and wherever they want. This means job hunting is getting pretty serious online. Commuters can apply for jobs on the way to work before you’ve even woken up. The competition is fiercer for jobs than ever before, and with such easy and constant access to the internet, not everyone needs to wait until they get home at six o’clock in the evening to grab the next big opportunity.
Phones and tablets
Mobile devices are always getting smarter. Smartphones in particular have boomed when it comes to being great job hunting tools. With huge job sites releasing app versions to the smartphone market, job hunting is a lot more accessible to people of all ages. With just a press of a button you can have your CV being sent off to multiple companies in minutes.
As for tablets, they’re great for watching videos from employers about the position you’d be applying for. Employers have cottoned on to the video age and are seeing the benefits in producing these rather than a boring, long-winded job specification. And now that tablet ownership is on the rise, job searchers can comfortably picture themselves within an organisation.
Job seekers will be more aware of where they’re applying to. They can research the company and even its employers on social media channels such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. On the flip side however, employers will (more so than now if they’re not already) use social media to look up their applicants. Read my article here on how social media can ruin your career. Where LinkedIn used to be the only social media tool for job seekers and employers alike, recruiters are now taking to Twitter and Facebook – and even searching blogs to scour for talent. Ensure that your online presence is consistently up to date and make sure your personal email address is listed in places where employers are likely to find it.
Speaking of being interactive, vlogging (video blogging) has really taken off in recent years. People take more notice of reviews (from websites such as Glassdoor) and video tours of prospective places to work before they apply. Humans are, after all, visual creatures and some of us respond better to graphics rather than words. If it means a candidate becomes more emotionally attached to a job listing rather than just on a logical level, the candidate is more likely to put in effort to apply and land the role.
It’s not just job descriptions from employers. If you can send a prospective employer a video version of your CV, right now this can make you really stand out in the recruitment process. It means you’re not afraid to ‘face’ the employer as it were, and you can really let your personality shine through before the interview stage, so the employer knows what to expect when they meet you. In a few years’ time however, this might actually be the norm when it comes to applying for new roles.
Location isn’t everything
In the past, location has always been important to looking for a new job. Nowadays however, so many companies offer remote working conditions and more flexibility. This means you can work in your choice of office locations, from London to Glasgow. Usually your travel to other offices will be paid for by the company which makes remote working a whole lot more attractive to candidates. Not to mention that offices save desk space – which ultimately saves them money.
Of course the way we apply for jobs depends on the particular industry we’re working in and the job we’re applying for. There are loads of ways you can get ahead of the curve by being creative and innovative when applying for your next role. Think about creating an infographic version of your CV, or a quick two minute video to send to a prospective company. Or, when you’re looking for opportunities, look for some good apps so you can get alerts on the go. If you’re not on social media, join it! You could be missing out on loads of chances to get headhunted or to search out new careers.