Here is another skills focussed Resumé style kindly provided by a Careers colleague of mine, Martin Darke, from his book “The 30-Second Impact Resumé – How to get that job”. The book can be purchased via http://www.a-new-career-direction.com/resume-book.html This book is great value and a wise investment for anyone job searching in Australia.
First impressions are one of THE MOST IMPORTANT aspects of your job search and networking activities.
Sadly, many forget this and wonder why no one will hire them or network with them (even if they do have great skills for more why use a digital marketing company and a competitive job application!
First impressions are made when someone comes in contact with you for the first time. This can be face-to-face, via phone, online, or in writing.
Here are some key tips for each of these communication methods that will ensure you are seen as a professional
- ALWAYS answer the phone with your name. Just saying ‘hello’ is very unprofessional.
- Smile while speaking on the phone and sit or stand upright. When you smile and have good posture, your voice will sound friendly and confident.
- When sending job applications, ALWAYS provide a brief summary of why you are applying within your email. Give the reader a reason to open your attachments. Treat this as a shortened version of your cover letter stating the key strengths you offer that directly relate to the job and how this may benefit the company.
- Emails should be formal with “Good morning” or “Good afternoon” or “Dear”. “Hi” is inappropriate for job applications. When in doubt, use formal salutations and language rather than casual.
- When inviting someone to connect with you on LinkedIn ALWAYSpersonalise the message. Tell them why you would like to connect. For example, have they shared information on a discussion group? Have you noticed their expertise in a particular industry and seek their wisdom? Perhaps you share an interest and would like to offer help or information to them? Consider quality of networks rather than just quantity.
- A brief and firm handshake is preferred in Australia when meeting other professionals, especially if meeting for the first time. This is done by both genders.
- Smile. The people you meet may not remember your name, however they will often remember a genuine and friendly smile.
- Have a simple business card. This is a quick and professional way to provide someone with your details. Include your LinkedIn profile address so they can connect and find out more about you.
- Study Australian English spelling, grammar and sentence structure. There is plenty of free information online for this. Australian libraries may also have high school English grammar text books that you can borrow.
- Be concise. Be considerate of the reader’s time and try to use fewer words to convey the same message.
- Use a Dictionary and Thesaurus. Learn and use new words regularly.
- When you write an email or document, read it out loud. This helps you find errors and identify areas where you need to be more concise.
- Have your documents proof-read by a professional.
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What is the biggest mistake migrants and international students make when looking for jobs in Australia?
Each country hires people differently. A Resumé that works for say, India or China, is not likely to work in Australia.
For example, a Masters degree is only of value in Australia if you can provide evidence of what you have learned and how you have used this learning. (What skills you have and how you have used these skills.) This shows the skills you have to offer and has more meaning to the employer.
Instead of just listing units completed, consider including projects you were involved in during your studies and how you contributed to the success of the project and how this would be of benefit to the employer.
If you have overseas experience note the achievements in your Resumé.
Never under estimate the value of a part time job or volunteering. Employers do not think it’s unprofessional if you work part time at a fast food shop or a supermarket while you are seeking a professional position. Australian employers view ALL local experience as valuable as it provides local referees and proves that you want to work.
The more you understand the Australian work culture, the more you will be able to adapt your job search techniques to be successful. After a one to one session, many of my clients say “I wish I had known how the Australia job market really worked when I first arrived here”. Investing in correct knowledge early in your migration or study plans will result in you obtaining relevant and higher paying work faster.
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Most people spend a lot of time looking at online recruitment sites and newspapers looking for jobs, but if around 70% of jobs are not advertised, shouldn’t we spend more time on the hidden job market to access more opportunities?
How the advertised job market works:-
- Reactive – You wait for an advertisement before sending your response
- Employer uses specific job criteria to filter out a high volume of applications (employers can receive 50 to 5000 job applications for one position)
- Everyone knows about the job, so now you have competition.
- Human Resources needs to quickly filter and delete applications that do not meet all criteria for more go right here. (in some cases a computer will search for key words to eliminate applicants that do not meet criteria)
- Your Resumé needs to be tailored and your skills need to clearly match the criteria in the advertisement, otherwise you will be filtered out and deleted.
- Local experience is a common filter used in Australia. In some cases ‘local’ may mean the state you are living in such as Perth or Melbourne for example.
- Very labour intensive for applicants and Human Resources departments.
- Limited ‘real’ knowledge about job. (If you don’t already work there or know someone who does, how do you know what the reality of that job will be? Online research can only give you the basics)
Just think how much time you have to read all the emails you get. Human Resources are in the same position, if you don’t show exactly how you match the job in your email content, cover letter, and Resumé they won’t read it!
How the hidden job market works:-
- Via word of mouth (Who do you know…..and who knows you?)
- Reputation. (What’s your brand? What skills and attributes are you known for?)
- Get to know, and be known by, employers before you have competition.
- Proactive – it’s all about how you can help others, especially in your industry.
- Interact with people in your target industry or field (not just the Human Resources department)
- Best way to get the ‘real’ facts about a job or company via discussion and information interviews of those in your target industry or company.
- Find out about future opportunities before they are advertised.
- Best option to create opportunities for work – discover problems that you can solve.
- Be helpful, be useful, be seen.
Success in the Hidden Job Market is all about Networking.In Australia, networking has a social and helping focus, compared to other countries.Good networkers are known for thinking of others, offering instead of taking, finding solutions for others, and creating links between people. For example, a good networker may hear about an issue that an industry professional has in their business and introduce them to a colleague who has the skills to help with this problem.It’s not just about finding opportunities for yourself, but building a positive reputation that will benefit for investment check out www.technopaydayloans.co.uk. Ultimately, this will be a bigger benefit to you and your future career options.
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Most professions in Australia have Associations or Institutes that guide or govern a particular occupation area.
For example, in Australia;
- Accountants have the Institute of Public Accountants, Institute of Chartered Accountants and CPA Australia (Certified Practising Accountant)
- Computer programmers have Australian Computer Society, Technology Industry Association, and Engineers Australia if they are linked with System Engineering.
These are easily found via Google by including key words like ‘Australia’ ‘Associations’ or ‘Institutes’ and industry titles. (urban planning, engineering, building, accounting, nursing, etc.)
You can also find them via www.myfuture.edu.au and use The Facts section to do an Occupation search.
Professional associations are your most vital link to facts about industry demand and skills needed, plus a great way to build your ‘local’ industry networks. Try to meet people at events and ask them about their experience of the industry. This may give you a chance to tell them what you offer in case it’s useful to them.
Remember, when you speak to your profession, you’re speaking the same language for more website. They will understand your skills better than a human resources department (unless your profession is HR). If you are a member of an association overseas, ask them if they have connections or affiliations with Australian associations. This can fast track building a professional network in Australia.
Employers will often advertise jobs on Professional Association websites.
Also consider utilising LinkedIn to connect and contribute to industry and association discussion groups.
In our one to one sessions we identify associations and organisations relating to your industry and then help you develop the skills to connect, communicate and get the most out of these professional networks.
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There are many articles and books on interview techniques, types of questions and interview styles, that can easily be found via Google search, book stores, and job and career websites.
However, the aim of this article is to give you an Australian perspective on interviews. It will also provide information on what is important to Australian employers, human resources departments and recruitment agencies.
If you are invited for a job interview it usually means that your job application documents already impress the employer.
The purpose of a job interview is for the employer to verify:-
- How well you fit with values and culture of the organisation
- The accuracy of skills and experience listed on your job application documents
- How well you match the requirements of the position compared to other candidates being interviewed
- Your motivation for wanting to work for the company
Important: Australian employers want to know HOW you have applied the skills you offer to the position. Don’t just say that you have the skills to do the job, explain how you have used the skills to achieve a positive result.
Main types of interview
- Panel—this is the most common type and will involve a group of people interviewing one candidate at a time. The panel will usually include the line manager of the position being filled and a Human Resources department representative. Additional people may include a senior manager, member of the team, or an impartial observer from another department to ensure that the interview is conducted in a transparent and fair way. Questions will be asked by several members of the panel, if not all of them, during the interview session.
- Informal—this can happen in Australia for a number of reasons such as, when being interviewed by a manager of a small business, when the nature of the industry is less formal (e.g. trades, cleaning, aged care), or if the position has not yet been formally advertised. An informal interview can involve a casual discussion about what the company needs and your skills. It can be in an office or over a coffee in a cafe. This style can be more challenging as the rules are less obvious. It is best to always behave professionally, regardless of how informal an interview may seem.
- Group—this is when several candidates are interviewed at the same time, usually by a panel of people. The questions asked of each candidate may be the same or each is asked a different question during the interview process. Successful interview candidates are either offered the position privately after the group interview is completed or asked to attend an individual interview at another time.
- Assessment centre—this often involves a combination of group interview, group problem solving activities and individual activities. Observations are made of participants as they progress through activities. The aim is to identify skills such as, team work, leadership, problem solving, communication, and collaboration. Though assessment centres can be daunting, they can provide you with great insight into your strengths and areas you may need to improve when you reflect on the experience.
Things that are important in Australia during the job interview
- Respect everyone—your behaviour may be observed from the moment you arrive for your interview. Be courteous to everyone regardless of their perceived status. This includes the receptionist, cleaners, or security. Status is viewed differently in Australia. It is best to be polite and respect everyone, equally.
- Names—people’s names are very important within Australian culture. You will make a good impression if you remember the names of the people conducting the interview and use their names at the beginning and end of the interview. If you need to clarify a question during the interview, it is good practice to respond to the person who asked the question by name. When speaking to people use the name by which they were introduced.
- Eye contact—Australians view a medium level of eye contact as a sign of being honest and friendly. Observe how Australians interact with each other and be conscious of how much eye contact you normally use.
- Personal space—this can vary from person to person depending on their own cultural upbringing. It is important to observe the reactions and movements of others when you stand next to them. To begin with, stand one arms length away and then let the other person adjust to suit themselves.
- Handshake—most Australian professionals use a hand shake when greeting others, regardless of gender. Handshakes need to be firm but not crushing with a duration of around one to two seconds. A weak handshake is seen as a lack of interest in meeting the person. Eye contact is made at the same time as the handshake and remember to smile.