10 Tricks to Gain an Advantage Applying for a Job

Sander Nõmmik
Author Sander Nõmmik

A list of 10 tricks and tips that, according to HR specialists at Estonia’s most successful companies, can be used to gain an advantage over competitors when applying for a job was compiled for CV Online’s blog.

  1. Read the job ad. An applicant should read the job ad at least twice before making the decision to apply, an HR manager of a big Estonian company recommends. Unfortunately, there are still people who send resumes to random employers, not making sure what skills are required at the position they are applying for. Also, a resume should contain enough information, so the employer can easily verify that the applicant has the needed skills.
  2. All your experience is useful. Write down in the resume what kind of experience you have had and how it has influenced you, even if it is not work-related. For example – how you spend your free time and what interesting hobbies you have.
  3. Have a friend or family member read your resume. To avoid spelling and logic mistakes, especially if you are writing your resume in a foreign language, have somebody check the resume for you. It does not take a lot of time but may help a lot.
  4. Add a cheerful but professional photo. We never hire anybody based on their looks, an HR Manager says. Yet, a photo helps her see if, for example, a person can look confident and presentable.
  5. Add a cover letter. A cover letter helps an employer see if the goals set by the applicant and employer are similar. An HR manager from the Estonian startup scene recommends applicants to show what kind of value they can offer as people, colleagues, and professionals.
  6. Get to know the employer. According to many HR workers questioned for the blog, applicants should get to know the organisation they wish to work for a bit more thoroughly than they usually do. One of the easiest ways is to visit their home page and see what information is available there.
  7. Be prepared for an interview. Be prepared for an interview right from the beginning. If you have sent an employer a resume, it is probable that somebody will contact you to arrange a meeting or an interview via phone. You should start thinking what to say right after sending your resume to be well prepared when the day for the interview arrives.
  8. Look clean and presentable when going to a job interview.
  9. Compile a list of references. This helps the employer see that you haven’t burnt bridges in life and are also able to work with your previous employers.
  10. Be friendly and open even if you’re not chosen. Positions change, companies develop and HR people remember the nice and friendly candidates that might be successful at other positions than the one they first applied for.