Wednesday, 25. April 2012
Although the articles made HR professionals look a little, as one commenter put it, slimy, those HR people that were quoted in the articles made a host of valuable points, and we’ve picked the top 10 HR secrets that will help you to get hired.
#1 – Customize your professionally written resume for each application, highlighting your relevant work experience and skill set as it relates to the job you are applying for. And as HR Consultant Emma Worseldine puts it, “Never lie – you will be found out.”
#2 – Proofread your resume, whether you get it written by a professional or you’ve updated it yourself. HR consultant Marianne Wilkinson “won’t hire someone who has a ‘Batchelor’ degree”, and neither will the majority of hiring managers.
#3 – Explain periods of unemployment on your resume or leave dates off entirely, because as former HR executive and author Cynthia Shapiro points out, “We assume other people have passed you over, so we don’t want anything to do with you.”
#4 – Use a professional email address for correspondence, because as Shirley Watt, director of a recruitment agency, explains nobody will to take you seriously with an email address like, “firstname.lastname@example.org” or “email@example.com”.
#5 – Record a professional sounding voicemail message, because as Bonnie Currin, director at specialist recruitment company PAG, East London, explains, with “a voicemail that is far from acceptable for a potential employer to hear” you will likely lose out on a chance to be invited in for an interview.
#6 – Do extensive research on a company before attending an interview, because as one New York City HR professional explains, “It’s amazing when people come in for an interview and say, ‘Can you tell me about your business?’ Seriously, people, there’s an internet. Look it up.”
#7 – Practice your interview skills ahead of time, paying particular attention to your body language and your ability to make eye contact. An HR manager of an undisclosed finance corporation advices that you should never “stare out the window as you’re talking, even if the view is magnificent.”
#8 – Keep your answers simple and concise. Although the interview is your chance to wow the hiring manger, you do not want to bore them. Take HR consultant Sharlyn Lauby’s experince for example of what not to do, “One time I said to a candidate, ‘Tell me a little bit about yourself.’ An hour- and-a-half later, I was afraid to ask question No.2.”
#9 – Be flexible in your work schedule and availability. As Laurie Ruettimann, an HR consultant and speaker in Raleigh, North Carolina, explains, “If we ask you to travel for your job or attend a conference, it’s not a question. Say no, and it can be career-ending.”
#10 – Prepare a list of potential questions to ask the interviewer, leaving the discussion about wages until the end. Bonnie Currin, director at specialist recruitment company PAG, East London, feels that it can be “off-putting to ask a candidate if they have any questions and the first thing they ask is ‘What’s the salary?’ Surely there are more profound questions they can think of to leave a lasting impression?”