Web 2.0 adds a twist to job search strategies

Tips to outshine your competitors in today's job market

With unemployment at a 14-year high and 240,000 workers laid off in October alone, many Americans are scrambling to update their resumes and turning to job boards and networking sites. Some are panicking as they try to devise new ways to get in front of employers. But even in trying times like these, prospective employees shouldn't completely reinvent their job-seeking styles.

Indeed, much of the tried-and-true career advice we've all heard is relevant in your next job search. To outshine your competitors and win the gig in today's economy, here's a secret to success: Don't abandon the steadfast career tips passed down from generations, but rather, refine them -- with a keen eye for the value in Web 2.0 tools like social networking.

Whether you're one of many IT professionals out of work or among the few making career leaps despite rocky economic times, consider these five ways to express your candidacy with flair.

Self-assess to stand out. Assess your core strengths, as well as qualities that will set you apart from the competition. Then strategize ways to emphasize these qualities in your resume, cover letter and the interviewing process.

For example, tailor the experience, skills and education sections of your resume to the position you're applying for. Use keywords from the job posting, employer's Web site and any related articles on the company.

Also, be specific with numbers. List how many employees you've managed, systems you've administered or applications you've developed.

Letters of reference can also set you apart, if they are particularly compelling and give an accurate description and concrete examples of your talent, work ethic or past successes. Try reaching out to references who have expertise that relates to the field or company you're applying for. Your prospective employer might take confidence in knowing you were trained or mentored by others with similar goals, interests and objectives.

Keep your skills a step ahead. To stand out and stay on the cutting edge, demonstrate fluency in state-of-the-art technical and functional skills as well as the standard competencies a specific role demands.

If you're a Visual Basic programmer, for example, don't settle for expertise in ASP.Net, VB.Net and SQL. Enhance that with experience in data warehouses, OLAP analysis tools and Business Objects reporting. For a Java application developer, Fatwire CMS experience is a plus.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Web 2.0

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Dan Cobb

Computerworld
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?