How to Stand Out in A Crowded Field of Applicants


While U.S. employers have been posting more job openings lately, hiring is still highly competitive across a number of industries.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that job openings rose in June to 3.8 million, which is the largest increase since July 2008. However, there are still 12.7 million who are unemployed, or approximately 3.4 people for every job opening, according to Bloomberg Businessweek. In order for you to land work in today’s competitive market, you must be able to stand out in the crowded field of applicants.

Get Noticed

As a job seeker, you need to get noticed, not only when sending in a resume, but every time you meet someone. Understanding how to stand out in every interaction with a potential employer will significantly increase your chances of moving forward.

Leadership expert Erica Dhawan said that each time a job seeker meets a potential professional contact, they should make sure they focus on how they can support that person first. She said that by focusing on how you can give, it can help you build deeper connections with others.

One easy way to build relationships with others, Dhawan said, is to start a conversation with a personal story that will evoke your values and assets.

Build an on and offline presence

In today’s technology-driven society you must make sure you have a strong online presence, which includes posting your resume to professional websites, as well as adding hyperlinks on your resume to any site that reinforces and showcases your skills such as your own personal website or recommendations on your LinkedIn page.

You also need to make sure you create a real presence within your industry by attending conferences, networking events and seminars where you can meet key contacts.

Also, don’t be afraid to email anyone for a face-to-face meeting. This is a good way to meet working professionals who may be able to give you insight into the industry and specific companies.

Know how to apply

As basic as it sounds, applying for a job involves more than sending your resume or filling out an application. You must first make sure that your resume is in line with the job description by highlighting your relevant qualifications. Always send in a cover letter to introduce yourself and convey why you are interested in the position.

You can find an array of cover letter samples online that will help you create a strong letter that will grab the attention of hiring managers and recruiters.