We’ve all heard that we should adjust our resume to the type of position we’re applying for. Even so, when it comes to jobs that are similar, using a universal resume for applications may seem like a smart idea.
Not so fast, says Paul Wolfe, Indeed's SVP of Human Resources. The truth is, descriptions vary even among jobs that have a lot in common — and not taking into account the details of individual postings is a sure way to reduce your chances of landing an interview.
So what are those key points that job seekers should be looking out for?
First, Paul emphasizes that job seekers should pay attention to keywords in job descriptions, and make sure they mirror that language in their applications.
Why? Hiring managers like to see that candidates speak their language and are fluent in the lingo of their industry — and when they see those keywords in a resume, it reinforces the impression that you’re a candidate with the knowledge required to perform the job.
Second, pay attention to and address any specific questions employers may ask in the job posting.
“If you come across a job description or application like this, make sure you follow the writing prompt closely,” says Paul. “Employers include a prompt like this to assess your attention to detail and written communication skills.”
When it comes to cover letters, watch out for word limits. No limit mentioned? A general cover letter rule is that it should be at most a single page long and consist of three or four paragraphs that highlight what makes you a great applicant.
When it comes to cover letters, watch out for word limits.
Paul also advises job seekers to look for certain words that provide clues about the company culture, which can help you craft an application that aligns with the company’s values and purpose.
“Look for a culture fit – does the job description mention a casual or formal dress code? Does it highlight team building or employee volunteer opportunities? Do they mention any unique perks, like catered meals? All of these things can give you insight into the organization and help you craft an application that’s aligned with what the company stands for.”
Above all, says Paul, applicants should focus on the experience requirements in the job description to ensure you are qualified to apply for the job. And always be sure to highlight the skills and experiences that make you the perfect fit for the role!
But wait, there’s more….
Are Indian companies losing their charm among employees in their homeland? According to Indeed’s first ever rankings for the most popular companies in India, only 10 Indian firms made the top 50 — and only three landed in the top 15. At the top of the list, Google claims the #1 spot, with tech giants such as Amazon, IBM, and Microsoft also making appearances, along with Indian companies Bharat Heavy Electricals, State Bank of India, and Tata Consultancy Services. View the full list at Financial Express.
The Bay Area is notorious for its high cost of living, but for most software engineers and developers, Silicon Valley is still a good bet, notes Indeed chief economist Jed Kolko. It’s true that a tech paycheck stretches furthest in Charlotte and Atlanta, where tech workers (respectively) make $108,178 and $104,454 once adjusted for cost of living. However San Francisco, San Jose, aren’t far behind and prominent tech hubs such as Austin and Seattle are also a good deal. The picture isn’t so rosy for New York or Washington D.C., though. Here salaries drop to to $91,961 and $94,022 once adjusted. Get all the details at VentureBeat.
There’s a deepening divide between airline management and flight-deck staff around the world, and a survey conducted by Indeed confirms this. The difficulty hiring experienced pilots is intensifying, with more than a quarter of pilot vacancies taking 60-plus days to fill. As demand for pilots rise, Mariano Mamertino, EMEA economist at Indeed, says that the aviation industry need to come up with more creative ways to train and retain pilots. Otherwise, we may be headed for some turbulence. Read all about it at Air Cargo Eye.
More and more companies expect incoming employees to have prior skills related to the job, putting a premium on internships and apprenticeships. However, those seeking high-skill, white-collar internships aren’t finding enough opportunities. According to Daniel Culbertson, economist at Indeed, employer demand for interns hasn’t increased at all across the board, even as searches for internships increase. On the flip side, apprenticeships and blue-collar internships can’t seem to draw enough applicants. For a closer look at the situation, read the Austin American-Statesman.