A lot of senior job seekers feel frustrated to enter the job market in search for a new job. They ask: “why do I have to go through all of this trouble to get a new job?” “I’ve have already proven to be an excellent employee and I have tons of experience?” Job hunting has changed a lot in recent years, beside the changes there are also some prejudices about senior job seekers you might have to deal with.
Take some time to explore the job market
Before you dive head first into the job market, you might want to take some time to explore. The job today is not the same as it was twenty or even ten years ago. The job application process has steadily been digitalized in recent years. Many companies do video interview in the first round of job interviews, especially since Covid-19 this has become almost the standard. Take some time to gain information about this, you can search online for “tutorials” or “best practices” on this topic. You also might have to rediscover where to find the best job posts and how to apply to them. You can contact a recruiter to discuss the job market and to find out how to prepare for successful job hunting in your industry.
Focus more on the CV
One of the things that changed in recent years is the amount of time a hiring manager or recruiter will take to make a first selection. This first selection is often done by just of quick look at the CV’s, recruiters scan the CV’s for important keywords. It’s possible that your cover letter won’t even get read at all when you don’t pass this first selection. You will still have to write a cover letter for your job application, but the CV is the document that has to lead you through this first selection.
When you are applying for a job, it is a crucial to sell yourself. Your CV is the best personal branding tools to sell yourself. There is a small the range between being too arrogant and being too humble. Most senior job seekers tend to be too humble. A lot of senior job seekers see their strengths and their extensive experience as such a given fact that they forget to highlight them on a job application. Due to the large number of candidates for each job post nowadays, it is not enough just to prove that you are a suitable candidate. A lot of candidates will be suitable for the job, only the candidates that are able to sell themselves as the best candidate will be selected.
Trim your CV
A CV should be all about quality and not about quantity. As a senior job seeker you will be tempted just to sum up all the possible information there is on your CV. But you will have to make a selection to make sure that your CV isn’t longer than two pages, and remains easy to read. Select only the information relevant for the job that you are applying to. You can skip the old information from the beginning of your career. Your first jobs are probably not where the quality of your experience came from. If you have a university or college degree you don’t have to add information about your high school diploma anymore. If you find it difficult to decide what to keep and what to delete you could consider having your CV re-written by a CV expert.
There is no “one size-fits-all” job applications
Most people understandably want to leave the job market as soon as possible. In a hurry to get a job again it is tempting to just quickly throw together a CV and send it out as often as possible. To increase your chance of making it through the first selection, you should customize your CV for every job application. Each job post contains information that can tell you what is important for the role and the company that you are applying to. Within the job post itself you can find the crucial keywords that recruiters look for in the first quick selection. Find these keywords in the job description and try to use them in our CV where possible.
Take advantage of your strengths
Senior job seekers do have some obvious advantages over younger candidates. However a lot of them forget to utilize their advantages. Besides just years of work experiences most senior job seekers have been in special situations during their employments. These special situations can be for example reorganizing companies, dealing with budget cuts or conflicts. Having dealt with these situations in the past can be a real advantage for future employers. Senior job seekers also tend to have a much greater network. Networking is one of the most effective ways to find new job opportunities.
Highlight your adaptability
A lot of senior job seekers we speak get frustrated by the prejudices they hear about senior job seekers. Unfortunately there are some prejudices. Prejudices like: inflexibility, stuck in the habits they have formed over the years, or not very energetic or open minded for change. If you don’t recognize yourself in these prejudices it is just frustrating having refute all this in your job application. You can choose to ignore the prejudices, but with some minor tweaks to your job application you can easily suppress them.
Highlight your adaptability on your CV. Check your employment history, don’t just focus on the responsibilities and the tasks. Look for events in which you had adapt to changing circumstances, try to insert this information into your CV. Emphasize the courses or seminars you might have followed recently that show you have kept your knowledge up-to-date with the latest developments in your industry.
A great way to let your CV stand out from other candidates is by using a professional CV template. At GoSumo we have many different CV templates, from creative design to formal design, we have a template for almost any industry or field of work. See our CV templates here.