Do you have what employers are really looking for?

Paper is dead


Most would agree that what employers are ultimately looking for in their staff will vary from vacancy to vacancy. When applying for any role, the first move is often to read the job description. Hopefully, the second move would be to ensure your CV is tailored correctly before applying. While the particulars may differ, there are essential qualities which will almost always apply. These attributes are applicable across most industries. It is in the added detail which will highlight strengths for sector specific jobs. In the IT sector, these skills will help when applying for a range of roles, from developer jobs to SQL jobs to project management jobs.

The below list includes some of the top buzzwords on a prospective employer’s list, as found by research by search company Adzuna. Many of these words may be self-explanatory, yet are worth considering how they can be interpreted on a CV:

1.   Organised

This is an essential ability to work hard and to deliver. This often will mean being able to prioritise a heavy work load.

2.   Communication

Communication skills should naturally come across in a well-written CV or during an interview. Depending on the role applied for, enhanced skill may be required for presentations, working in a team or managing others.

3.   Motivation

Money is rarely a good answer when questioned over motivation. Motivation can additionally be used to highlight being able to work without being prompted.

4.   Qualified

Actual relevant qualifications, achieved externally or internally during a previous role, should always be listed. Many companies provide their own training which may be applicable to future roles. Qualified can also be considered a high level of experience in a certain type of career, not just a certificate.

5.   Degree

These days it may be widely expected for most applicants to have obtained a degree. This is still a plus in the eyes of many employers, even if only used as a tool to sort out numerous CVs. Skills learnt during university can be highlighted alongside the actual grade. For example; the ability to work to deadlines, possibly organising own time to study and work, and able to work within a team.

6.   Flexible

Being flexible might not only be in terms of hours available to work. Companies often require someone to be willing to work outside of an exact job description, assisting others or allowing the role to evolve naturally.

7.   Commitment

For some industries; commitment can be shown on a basic level by length of employment at previous firms. Or whether work history and hobbies tend to jump around all over the place. These are not necessarily problems if worded correctly to underline the benefits for a chosen career move.

8.   Track Record

Proving a track record is essentially what a CV is for. All organisations may not require an extensive track record while for others this may be one of the only reasons for hiring.

9.   Passionate

This can be hard to show on a CV and be relied upon more in the interview. The personal statement is a useful tool to get across interests in the industry. Emphasizing any volunteer work or network events attended in your own time can be used to underscore genuine passion.

10. Innovative

Businesses crucially want people to do the job they have been asked to do. Being innovative is unlikely to be about completely changing a role. This is often to show being able to overcome challenges and work to solve difficult situations. Taking responsibility to solve problems referenced in a CV can be a good starting area for conversation in an interview.

Clearly just listing these words on a CV is less than likely to win a new job, although it may make you stand out from the crowd for the wrong reasons. There are other factors to also take into account including; adjusting the detail within an application to address relevant requirements, a precise cover letter, researching the company, and cleaning up your own online presence.

If you can get the basics right, this is the first step to achieving your job.

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