How to Market Your Skills Online
and Stand Out in a Competitive Workplace
It is a competitive job market for everyone right now, and we can expect it to become harder in the next few years. So how do you stand out relative to the competition? There are a number of potential solutions, some more attainable than others. However, you will need to do your part and be ready to do the legwork necessary if you really want to make your presence known.
Let’s take a look at how to market your skills online and stand out in a competitive workplace, no matter what you want to do for a living.
Get Relevant Work Experience
It can be hard to be seriously considered for a job if you don’t have relevant experience. The challenge is getting relevant experience in the first place.
If you’re early in your career, internships are a great way to get experience. You could search for entry-level jobs in the field or industry you want to work in since they are usually more willing to hire someone who doesn’t have relevant work experience. Another option is volunteering. This could be a good way to gain work experience if you can’t land a job, and it is a great networking opportunity.
When angling for a promotion, gain leadership skills. Become a mentor and mention that on your resume. A mentor will be able to work with you and identify your weaknesses. Ideally, you want someone who’s in your field and is/was in a leadership position.
Also, try to be more proactive and lead projects. You can then list those accomplishments on your resume. There are plenty of opportunities that you can find that will allow you to become a better leader. The more experience and skills you have, the more you’ll have to say when employers ask you about situations you’ve been in and how you were able to resolve issues. Situational experience is just as important as work experience, so make sure that you’re involved in different roles.
Craft a Professional Online Presence
You also have to make sure that you give your online image a makeover. Make sure that all of your social media profiles look professional. Put a professional headshot on all of them. Add your work history, your skills, your certifications, and your education on them. After all, you don’t know which profiles will come up when someone does a search for your name.
Make sure that you remove content that is potentially embarrassing, and remove tagged pictures that could hurt your professional image. Update your profiles by sharing industry-related news and personal achievements. This is useful whether you’re laid off from a full-time position or a freelancer constantly looking for work.
Create a Personal Website
A personal website is one designed to showcase you and your work, and this could play an essential role in getting you recruited. Note that it doesn’t take much time or technical skill to build a personal website. However, it needs to be search engine optimized to show up at the top of any online search results or come up in response to searches for people with your skillset.
One of the things you could do is work with an SEO and content marketing company to improve your personal search engine optimization. They can help you create content that is optimized for searches by employers looking to hire someone like you. They’ll ensure that your online project portfolio is well-organized, too.
A digital portfolio could end up making or breaking the hiring decision for the manager. One study found that 56% of managers were more impressed by a personal portfolio than any other online branding tool, though less than 10% of job-seekers had one.
Customize Your Resume for Each Job Application
You’ve probably heard the advice of customizing your resume for the position. However, just referencing the job position number and the hiring manager’s name in your correspondence isn’t good enough. You need to include the specific skills and certifications they reference in the job specification in your resume if they’re applicable.
For example, you could rename the job title you had to match the one they want to fill if the titles are synonymous. On the other hand, it is sometimes wise to remove qualifications and positions that aren’t relevant.
Prepare for Your Interview
If your resume was read and resulted in a call back, then you need to do your homework and prepare for your interview. Do some research about the company as well as the position. Have answers to the questions they’re likely to ask you and have a few questions you can ask them at the end of the job interview.
Be Careful with Credentials
The classic answer to job seekers is to earn a degree or get a more advanced degree to qualify for more advanced positions. Unfortunately, this is an expensive proposition. A better choice is looking for qualifications and certifications that could enhance your resume. This is faster and cheaper than earning a college degree. If you have credentials and qualifications, mention them on your social media profile.
Network the Right Way
It is true that most people find employment through referrals in their network. However, you don’t want to waste time attending networking events and talking to everyone you meet about your job hunt, though these things can help. Consider connecting with people in your profession or the industry you want to work in. They’re the ones most likely to be able to refer you to a job you want. If you’re not currently looking for work, keep in contact with people in your field. They may be able to help you find your next job, and if not, they’re good references.
You should also consider joining professional associations. This is a good way to network with peers and membership is a good thing to have on your resume. Furthermore, this puts you on the inside track for any hiring managers in the group.
Hiring managers rarely respond to unusual approaches, while it is easy to get lost in the crowd when you try traditional methods to get their attention. Use the right techniques to get referrals and the attention of hiring managers.
Further Reading from Skills You Need
Develop the skills you need to get that job.
This eBook is essential reading for potential job-seekers. Not only does it cover identifying your skills but also the mechanics of applying for a job, writing a CV or resume and attending interviews.
About the Author
Boris Dzhingarov is a passionate blogger. He is the founder of Dzhingarov.com.