New Career: What do Recruiters Really Look For?

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - MAY 28: Recruiter Caren J....

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Question: Help! I need and want to change careers. What do recruiters look for? How can I land my dream job?

Answer: The keys are passion and inspired experience.

Perhaps you have no desire to ‘makeover’ your career but prefer to transition into a new and exciting career — one that you’re enthusiastic and passionate about. If you need to send your resume to recruiters, you may be curious as to what they look for. You may be surprised to know the number of positions you’ve held, your knowledge base, or the number of degrees you have may not be the number one criteria for landing your dream job. The secret to landing your dream job could be your passion for your work. Remember, it’s not hard work when you love what you do.

Recruiters receive a plethora of resumes from college graduates and seasoned workers responding to open positions within organizations. However, most recruiters aren’t impressed with the number of college degrees you have. Let’s face it; most candidates have one or more degrees. Here are few tips for you:

  • College graduates need to show internships on their resume and how they really made a difference at companies. Passion sells!
  • Seasoned workers need to show their passion and commitment to organizations and projects. Sell your enthusiasm!
  • Showing is better than telling. I know I have repeated this, but I’m trying to make a point. Showing is much better than telling.

Tip: Consider hiring a career coach to help you find the ‘right’ career for you.

Social media is the ‘new’ way to connect and network with people who can help you find and land your dream job. Keep your social media profiles clean. You may have to ‘hide’ some folks who are displaying pictures of themselves partying to their heart’s content or posting status updates such as, “Puked my guts out from drinking too much this weekend.” You may even want to decline friend requests. Unfortunately, you are judged by the company you keep. To quote Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Show me who a man’s (or woman’s) friends are and I will tell you who he (she) is.” You may not agree with this but with so many candidates looking for jobs, the ones that seem more professional will get the interview and job.

College grads and seasoned workers may want to speak to recruiters and ask them what they look for in candidates. Everyone could use a direction and guidance. Also, peruse the websites of the companies you’d like to for and make sure you really want to work for them. You may discover their values and your values aren’t a match. It’s better to know this up front before you submit a resume, receive an interview and job offer.

If you intuitively know that it’s time to move on from your current employer and or career, have the courage to do so. You can find new employment as long you don’t have any ‘fear’ around it. It will behoove you to only speak about your bold move with people who love and support you. Naysayers will fill your head with their fears and talk you out of pursuing your dream career. If you want to work for yourself, start part-time while you work your day job. You can quit after you’ve built a strong client base and savings account.

Good luck!


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