Employment opportunities are scarce/limited, but not non-existent. Gone are the days when your school results/certificates are what employers (strictly) use to recruit employees. Nowadays, you need more than certificates to get your desired jobs; you need technical and applied skills, self-marketing skills, communication skills, etc.
In this piece, I examine some necessary steps job applicants need to take (and some resources to use) to boost their employability skills.
After school, what an average job seeker starts doing is sending CV out to companies; checking one website to the other for vacant positions. If you want to boost your chances, you must do more than this. One of the things to do is self-exhibition. Exhibit your knowledge/skills; show the world you’re an expert in your field. Various blogging platforms such as Blogger, WordPress, and Tumblr are using technology tools that can be used to do this. For instance, if you are a graduate of fine arts, create a blog where you consistently display your artworks. While this boosts your skills through constant practice, it most importantly showcases you to companies/employers who may be interested in recruiting an employee with your kind of expertise. You never can tell who is checking your blog.
Social media engagement
Social media is not only for entertainment, it’s also for education and information. Follow people that are within your career circle and share your works with them. You can also offer your professional opinions/thoughts on related issues with your social media connections. It might interest you that companies nowadays check applicants’ social media postings as part of standards used in considering their suitability.
Experience is one of the fundamental factors employers look out for when recruiting. Volunteering is a viable and easy platform to get experience and skills needed to boost your employment chances. Volunteering also gives you a rare opportunity of connecting with the experts in your dream professional career.
Signing up for jobs websites
Some job seekers rely merely on their family’s and friends’ connections to help them with job applications. Others limit their chances only to vacancy adverts in traditional newspapers. The idea is not that the above-stated options are not workable means of getting employed, but to boost your chances, you have to go extra miles. There are effective websites now that publicize job openings on a real-time basis and also allow you to put up your profiles for employers to see. If you are keen on getting your desired job in this digital age, you must sign up on some of these websites. Examples are Jobberman.com, Hotnigerianjobs.com, Dice.com, JournalismJobs.com, etc.
Learning relevant technology tools and courses
This is a digital age. Every field has now been technologized. Various technology tools (Microsoft Office Suite, Adobe Suite, Microsoft Outlook, Slack, Trello, etc.) have been developed to aid productivity and smartness at work. Learning how to use these tools effectively gives you an edge.
Attending relevant seminars and human networking
The fact that you are not currently employed doesn’t mean you should not mingle with professionals in your favourite career. In fact, to boost your chances, you should go out to attend relevant seminars to upgrade your knowledge and connect with the experts you meet at the seminars. Experience has shown that a lot of people get employed through this means—it’s called human networking.
Profile packaging (resumes, CVs, motivation letters, etc.)
Some job applicants don’t take their CVs, Resumes, and Motivation letters serious. This is one of the reasons a lot of best brains don’t get hired. CVs and other relevant documents are the first media you have to market yourself. To boost your chances, you must take time to prepare your relevant credentials for job applications. And if you can’t, get the professional hands to do it for you.
It is through communication that people get to know the stuff you are made of. If you can’t communicate well, chances are that you will find it difficult getting hired no matter how good you are. No matter what your field is, take your communication skills serious and improve on it regularly. There are numerous tools you can use to achieve this. For instance, you can enrol in communication courses on coursera.com.
What employers want now are utility workers. An employer will most likely prefer a Web Developer who also knows about graphic design, social media, and digital marketing over an applicant who’s merely a Web Developer. So, to boost your chances, you need to look at your specialization and find some adjunct skills needed to complement your core expertise.