Overcoming Job-Seeking Obstacles to Land Your Dream Job
If you are looking for a new career opportunity in today’s job market, then you know: The struggle is REAL! The sheer number of hoops candidates must jump through to maybe get an interview is staggering. We feel your pain! To help you navigate the hiring process, we’ve addressed three of the main pain points faced by candidates.
Not Having Enough Time
Whether you drew the short straw from your last employer or you are looking to leave your current role, the time commitment of finding your next position is extreme. According to Forbes, job seekers who are recently unemployed need to spend up to 40 hours per week job-seeking, and actively employed job seekers need to spend up to 10 hours a week on job-seeking activities. Activities that job candidates need to be prepared to perform include:
- Updating and customizing resumes and cover letters for each application,
- Completing online job applications,
- Researching industries and companies of interest and identifying open positions,
- Searching your network for people with connections to each job’s hiring manager,
- Being interviewed and prescreened by prospective employers and
- Attending job fairs, professional organization events and other networking opportunities.
Realistically, most of us have little to no time to accommodate the above activities at all, let alone complete them with excellence. This lack of time resources makes being a “stand-out” candidate a major challenge.
For this reason many actively employed candidates outsource various job-seeking activities. Some candidates hire freelancers to improve their resumes and even fill out applications. This requires the freelancers to know a great deal about candidate, the job they are seeking, the industry in which they work and the company they’re targeting. Unfortunately, most freelancers are not able to check all those boxes. A more effective form of outsourcing your job search is partnering with a well-established human capital agency that specializes in your industry or job function. While freelancers are paid for their time or for written deliverables, human capital firms do not get any form of financial compensation unless they get you hired.
Getting “Ghosted” by Employers
Despite the considerable time commitment on the part of applicants, correspondence is often one-sided. Hiring managers and in-house HR staff have so many competing priorities and so many applications to sift through that they often fail to follow-up with candidates (even ones they’ve interviewed!). So you may think all is going perfectly well and then never hear back. After a week or more of radio silence, you may want to follow-up with the employer. You don’t want to come across as desperate or pushy, so what can you do? While it’s generally perfectly fine to send polite follow-up emails to hiring managers, there is no guarantee that the hiring managers will even read them. And calling or leaving a voicemail has the potential to come on too strong.
Many candidates bypass this game of tiptoe by partnering with a human capital agency that already has a strong relationship with the employer. Since communication between the Recruiter/Account Manager and employer is already happening on a regular basis, it’s much easier for the Recruiter/Account Manager to be your advocate in the hiring process. Hiring managers prefer working with Recruiters/Account Managers because it gives them one point of contact for candidate updates.
Not Having a “Foot in the Door”
Who you know is often a determining factor in whether or not you are advance to the next stage of the interviewing process. Employers prefer to work with known entities versus rolling the dice on unknown applicants whenever possible. So employee referrals are often given special consideration. A 2016 study cited by SHRM revealed that employee referrals made up 30 percent of all external hires and 45 percent of all internal hires. But what if you do not know anyone at your target company?
Once again, human capital agencies come to the rescue! By leveraging a Recruiter’s existing relationship with an organization, you ensure yourself a warn intro and a better chance of securing an interview and ultimately landing the job.