If you’re fresh out of college or you’ve lost your job due to the post-recession restructuring, you’re in the same unenviable position: Both of you are competing for the same small pool of jobs, and both of you face the same obstacles. What can you do to make yourself stand out and convince those choosy employers that they should hire you over potentially better-qualified applicants?
Design your resume around your transferable skills
When you’re changing careers, you need to frame your existing skills and experiences in terms of the job you are trying to get. Most people have a bank of skills that are freely transferable between jobs: communication, interpersonal, teamwork and leadership. You may have other skills, such as computer programs you know, that would be valuable, but make sure that you frame them in the context of the new job. If you can’t find a way to make a particular skill fit, then don’t use it.
Demonstrate flexibility and willingness to learn
Most employers value flexibility and trainability as much as they value hard skills according to a CareerBuilder survey. The survey found that 77 percent of employers believe that soft skills (including trainability and flexibility) matter just as much as hard skills. This is great news for people changing careers or new college graduates. To demonstrate this to a prospective employer, be ready to give examples of times when you had to learn a new skill quickly.