Standing out in a competitive job market takes time, effort and dedication - plus a little special 'know-how' - which is what this blog is all about. 

In the current complex job market - take nothing for granted 

Are you feeling overwhelmed by the job market? Who would blame you? With so many people vying for the same positions, the competition’s tough. How do you guarantee that 
it’s your CV that sits on top of the recruiter’s pile? 
it’s you who stands head and shoulders above the also-rans? 
it’s you who forces your interviewer to declare – ‘You’re the one!’? 
The answer? You can’t. In the complex world of job-seeking, there are no guarantees. 
But – what you can do is give yourself the best possible chance of becoming ‘the one’. 
Treat this blog as a guide to employment success – 10 tips to take with you as you go for that job. 

1. Tailor your CV and cover letter 

The first step to standing out is to tailor your CV and cover letter to the job you're applying for. Don’t just churn out a generic CV that reads like all the others. Make it relevant. Customise your application to highlight the specific skills and experience that the employer is looking for. Take the time to research the company and the job requirements, and then make sure your application is a good match. 

2. Show off your unique skills 

What makes you stand out from the crowd? Maybe you speak another language, have a unique hobby or have a qualification that's relevant to this particular job. Whatever it is, make sure to highlight it in your application. Your future bosses aren’t looking for an automaton. They’re after an employee who will bring something extra to the table. Give them what they’re looking for. Something different. 

3. Network, network, network 

Networking is a crucial part of the job search process. Do what you can to 
attend industry events 
connect with relevant people on LinkedIn 
reach out to your personal and professional contacts 
The more people you know, the better your chances of finding out about job openings and getting a foot in the door. 

4. Be proactive 

Don't wait for job openings to come to you – be proactive and reach out to companies who interest you. There’s no harm in sending out a few speculative emails, making one or two phone calls, or even dropping by in person. Just make sure to do your research first - so that you're approaching the right people and making a good first impression. 

5. Demonstrate your passion 

Employers want to hire people who are enthusiastic about their work. Show them your passion. In your application and during interviews, demonstrate what you love about your chosen industry or sector. Be animated when you talk about why the role appeals to you. Be ready with some examples of how you've excelled in the past. 

6. Do your research 

Make sure you’re knowledgeable about the company and the industry. Take the time to research the company's history, culture, and values, as well as any recent news or trends in the industry. This will not only help you during the application process but will also give you a better understanding of whether the company is a good fit for you. 

7. Be confident 

When it comes to standing out in a competitive job market, confidence is key. This is easier for some than others. We’re not all born confident. But don’t worry. Your interviewer knows that we’re all different. Find the time to practise presenting yourself with poise and professionalism. Don’t be shy about talking about your achievements and skills. Remember, the employer is looking for someone who can add value to their team. So, be calm and confident when you speak about your abilities and what you can bring to the company. 

8. Practice your interview skills 

Interviews can be nerve-wracking, but the more you practice, the more confident you'll feel. Find the time to prepare for common interview questions and practice your answers with a friend or family member. Try researching online some interview tips and techniques, such as maintaining eye contact, active listening, and asking thoughtful questions. You’ll find plenty more job-hunting ideas here

9. Follow up 

After an interview or application, it's always a good idea to follow up with the employer. Send a thank-you email to show your appreciation and reiterate your interest in the role. This will help keep you top of mind and demonstrate your commitment to the job. 

10. Keep learning 

Finally, one of the best ways to stand out in a competitive job market is to keep learning and growing. Don’t stagnate. Take courses, attend workshops, and seek out other opportunities for professional development. Not only will this make you a more competitive candidate, but it will also show employers that you're committed to improving your skills and staying up-to-date with industry trends. 

Time, effort and dedication 

Standing out in a competitive job market takes time, effort and dedication. But by tailoring your application, showing off your unique skills, networking, being proactive, demonstrating your passion, doing your research, being confident, practising your interview skills, following up and continuing to learn and grow, you'll be on your way to landing the job you really want. You can be the One! Good luck! 

20 years of recruitment success 

2023 is a big year for us at Ascendant Recruitment. We’re celebrating our 20th birthday! That’s 20 years of helping candidates and companies to find the right match. 
We haven’t come this far by accident. We’ve spent 20 years developing a reputation as the number one recruitment specialist in Milton Keynes. 
We want to make 2023 a great year for you too. Get in touch - tell us about your career goals. 
We’d love to hear from you. 
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