When I first drafted this blog, I considered using the formal term “Recruiter”, but then I thought someone might think this was an article about signing up to join the military. On the other hand, it is neither about the practice of taking and preserving a person’s head after killing them.
I have the pleasure of working with a Staffing/Recruiting firm called Division 10 Personnel and Aerostaff.net1. Aerostaff.net has a specialty in recruiting and staffing for the Aviation industry which is why I’m writing this blog. I have come to observe some behaviors of candidates on the market which detract from their efforts to gain employment, and other behaviors which aid those efforts. Here’s a few:
- GET ON LINKED IN: Linked In is among the major tools used by Recruiters to locate candidates. Take the time to accurately post all the information about yourself. Compare yours with others profiles for refinement. Request recommendations and endorsements from friends and colleagues. Keep it updated. Look at mine, for example. Also:
- If you are on the market, unemployed, say so
- If you are employed, but would not mind being discreetly contacted in case of a match with an opening, in your profile for Contact Preferences, make sure “Career Opportunities” is left open. Nearly everyone does this commonly.
- Did I mention you can get all this PR using the free features of Linked In?
- Resumes/CV’s: I am not going to give advice about formatting these. If you give a draft to ten persons, you’ll get ten varying answers. Use any number of services to assist in drafting it. On the other hand, my strong recommendation is that every resume/CV should be customized for the particular opening.
- Carefully read the job description, and for those aspects you feel you meet, amplify your resume/CV to highlight the match. For example, suppose a portion of a Job Description says “Familiarization with Certification Regulations highly Desired.” Don’t just parrot the requirement verbatim, but list those specific regulations you have worked with or around citing chapter and verse. This is impressive and tells the reader there is an obvious match to the requirement.
- A recent Forbes.com article estimated that 40% of all resumes aren’t altogether above board2; that’s a polite way to say lies. Some of the most common resume/cv lies involve degrees, dates, exaggerating numbers, increasing the amount of your previous salary, inflating titles, lying about technical abilities, and padding grade point averages, among others. Royboy’s advice: Don’t do it. Background and reference checks are common. Your reputation is precious; guard it.
- Particularly in aviation and for former military, don’t leave any acronyms undefined. Never assume an acronym is so common it does not need definition.
- Address gaps in employment date continuity.
- In some parts of the world, posting your picture on your resume is expected. In other parts it is considered vain.
- Regarding accuracy, it is disappointing and raises flags when your profile on Linked In, or resume posted on Monster (or any other resume-hosting service) does not match the resume/CV you sent.
- Have someone with good English skills proofread your draft. We all know of the shortcomings of spell check.
If you get speared by a head hunter, don’t roll over and play dead (Yes, I’ve exhausted my puns for this blog). Recruiters, who have the relationship with the hiring firm, want you to get hired, and will work with you to prep you or improve your resume for that first meeting or phone interview. You can count on discreet contacts with your recruiter.
Advice to job seekers could easily fill 10 blogs, which is not the purpose of this forum, but as a hiring manager or job seeker, if you have any pet-peeves or interesting insight, please leave a comment on this blog.
Over ‘n out