New year, new job? For many in the Philippine workforce, this is exactly what they want to happen in 2018, preferably within this quarter. #NewYearNewMe
While newspaper ads and referrals will always be reliable sources for job vacancies, today we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to digital job markets. From still-strong long-timers JobStreet Philippines and LinkedIn, we can now also count on Kalibrr, Upwork, and other markets for either full-time, part-time, or freelance/contractual work leads. Companies are also putting up hiring notices on their own websites, cutting out the “middle man” and expediting the entire process.
Before you apply to any job online, ask yourself this question: Is your profile ready for showtime? We’ve already delved into what your resume should look like, but this time, we’re taking other digital job platforms into consideration, too.
By this, we mean three things. Use a profile picture specifically taken for job applications—one wherein you’re wearing a polo or collared shirt, a tie and/or a suit jacket, and with the standard grooming routine done. Never ever use that weird and wacky photo of yourself on your social media accounts!
The same goes for your resume details. If you’re sending your resume as a PDF file, stick to the usual fonts like Times New Roman, Calibri, or Arial. Keep the jokes and nonsense out of it, too. Use a separate e-mail address for your applications; [firstname.surname]@gmail.com or even Yahoo! or Hotmail should be good. And you obviously don’t work at "Edi Sa Puso Mo" or "The Krusty Krab," so cut that shit out. Be professional from start to finish, and you will be treated as such by the companies you’re applying to.
Lastly, the days of the long resume are long gone. One to two pages is the norm now, with three pages signifying vanity and an inability to edit yourself. Take out your college internship, high school recognitions and clubs, and other unneccesary information, especially if you’ve been working for more than five years to a decade. The same goes for references; if all you’ll write is “available by request,” scrap that section altogether and save precious paper and ink.
At this point, we’re pretty sure every HR employee in this country is sick of the usual boring resume format (or, bio-data, LOL). Step up your game and use resume templates. Google Docs has several nice resume templates that you can use for free. Microsoft also offers free templates that still do the job. There’s no need for flamboyant and designed resumes unless you’re going after design jobs.
Overall, keep your resume simple and uncluttered, but still aesthetically pleasing. It’s the first—and often, only—way to get HR’s attention, so make sure your one shot counts.
Explore every online job market and see where their strengths are. For example, JobStreet PH has a wide coverage for both local companies/industries and types of job vacancies. LinkedIn’s great for job-hunting at multinational companies or overseas firms. On Kalibrr, you’ll see listings for both big firms and startups, and even Kalibrr’s own vacancies. Upwork’s good mostly for short-term IT, virtual-assistant, online marketing, and customer-service tasks.
Decide on which marketplace(s) you’ll use, then edit your resume accordingly. Include only skills and work experience that are connected to your desired jobs, or the company/industry you’re gunning for. Put in relevant previous-job accomplishments that can be verified by both confirmed numbers/statistics and character references.
Lastly, different countries use different resume formats, so prepare several versions of your resume just in case and do your research. For example, Philippines-based companies consider the inclusion of a profile picture and your complete home address a requirement; not putting these in would make you look odd. Meanwhile, US-based companies typically don’t ask for your profile picture and home address due to discrimination concerns; and the required details will vary per European country.
Out of all the online job platforms available right now, LinkedIn has the most options for engagement and promotion. It enables you not only to add people and work contacts to your network, but also to highlight specific skills for HR pros and recruiters to see, follow companies and public personalities based on your interests and target jobs/industries, and join professional groups.
You can also write informative and well-researched articles to share with your LinkedIn network, a feature you should maximize if you’re looking to get into marketing or content creation. Another option is go all-in and build your brand via LinkedIn, as one successful Filipina freelancer has done.
Give and receive
Another LinkedIn feature that we like—and you can display on your profile—is skill endorsements. Basically, your LinkedIn contacts vouch for your talent and effectiveness on specific work-related skills and skill sets. Think of it as a great form of unsolicited validation from people you know and have worked with; it’s like they’re telling future employers that you’re the real deal, and they should hire you ASAP.
A good rule to follow is to endorse the people in your network who you think are good at what they do, and don’t demand endorsements in return. In return, you’ll get honest endorsements from your network.
We have Kalibrr and Upwork in mind for this part, because both online job platforms offer tests that you can display on your profile. It’s another example of showing to prospective employers that your awesomeness is an established fact, not a self-assessment. Take the exams that fit your industry or desired categories, and show off your best results on your profile.
Once you’re done sprucing up your profile, let the world know you’re on the job hunt! Post your updated resume(s) on your social media accounts, make them searchable online, ready your supporting materials (portfolio, etc.), and start applying!