The headlines are inescapable–“help wanted” signs are everywhere and businesses are looking for workers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are currently 10.4 million job openings in the U.S–and only 8 million job seekers.
What does this mean for your average job seeker?
While there are plenty of headlines about help wanted signs, the situation isn’t the same everywhere. There is no single national trend that will indicate the precise nature of the job market; it’s too complex and the U.S. is too big.
Unemployment rates across the U.S. vary by state. For example, the unemployment rate in Utah is just 2%, whereas in Nevada it’s 7.5%. Research the labor statistics for your state to have an informed idea of the job landscape. Be aware that these concepts will vary by industry as well.
Interviews Have Changed
As we transition to a remote environment, interviews are following suit as well. A lot of organizations are now relying on virtual communication tools to conduct interviews. This serves as a way for employers to gauge how well a potential employer may communicate virtually.
Whatever the case is, be sure to brush up on popular communication platforms such as Zoom or Google Meets. First impressions are important, and this way you will be prepared to join a virtual interview with no awkward hiccups–which are never a great sign for an interview.
Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) are software programs that hiring managers leverage to filter the influx of applications they receive. The software crawls your resume and scans for keywords
specific to the job field you are applying to. If the document does not meet the required amount of keywords, it gets filtered out.
Basic, generic resumes probably won’t cut it. Your resume should represent yourself as the perfect fit for the organization. Remember, you are selling your value to employers framed through their needs.
Look out for major keywords, traits and hard/soft skills that the job description is stressing, and bring those elements to the forefront of your resume. Always include buzzwords that relate to your industry throughout–cast a wide net to be sure you are compliant with ATS.
Specific Skills Are Key
Many analysts believe that organizations are transitioning to be more focused on specific skills rather than duties and job titles. Listing concrete skills and achievements will not only show hiring managers how you performed your job, but also how well you performed. This will lend credibility to your document and help you standout from other applicants.
Now is an excellent time to be a job seeker–but it’s an even better time to be an informed job seeker. Leverage these things to the best of your ability and you will land that dream job.
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