You may think that your job is hard work, but do you ever think back to how hard it was to get one. Finding the right job can be hard work, but proving that you’re the best person for that role can be even tougher.

Here are five of our top tips for job seekers:

  1. Have an updated resume

Remember that job you had when you were 15 that you were so proud of getting? Yeah…We’re sorry to say that it’s probably not relevant and needs to be cut from your resume. Employers are busy and time poor. The last thing you should be doing is wasting their time with a resume that it too long or out of date. Make sure all of the years are correct and have the same formatting throughout. Cut irrelevant achievements and awards you received at high school (to be honest, you can probably cut everything from high school if you graduated ten years ago).

Your resume needs to be about you and why that particular employer should choose you over everyone else. It should be one page long (two maximum) and contain relevant jobs and volunteer projects from the past few years. If you completed a course which is relevant to the job you’re applying to, include that. If you’re a recent graduate, make sure your resume is updated to say that you’ve graduated and that you’re not still studying. Proofreading it is essential.

  1. Brush up on your interview skills

Interviews are extremely tough, and the best way to become good at them (and therefore succeed), is to practice. Now, obviously it won’t be possible to practice with multiple employers in real life situations, but try practicing speaking in the mirror. Use eye contact. Be calm. Remember to smile.

If you have enough time, you could also create a list of questions that you think an employer will ask and pull them out of a hat to answer in front of the mirror as a mini impromptu speech.  You can tape yourself and play it back to see if you can hear the smile in your voice if it’s a phone interview. Really, whatever works for you. But if you practice, you will seem prepared. Know what you want to get across whilst also knowing what your interviewer will be looking for.

  1. Research the company

There is almost nothing worse and more unprofessional than turning up to a job interview unprepared. The fact that you may have had multiple interviews that week or day is no excuse and a potential employer will not let that slide. Try and find out as much about the company as you can. Have you seen one of their recent projects you think you could assist with? What is their motto? Their aims? How do you fit into their equation and how are you their missing puzzle piece? Be ready to sell yourself.

However, it’s not possible to sell yourself if you can’t sell the fact that you know about their company. At the end of the day, if you don’t do any research – you’re selling yourself short. You may have been the best fit for the job, but you need to appear intelligent by doing your preparation.

  1. Make a wish list

The best way to look for a job is to know what you want. Make a list of what kind of jobs you’re looking for. The skills they require. The salary and benefits packages. Do you want jobs that offer more holidays or would you be prepared to go for one with less holidays if it paid more? How about working hours? Do you want 9 till 5 or something else? Weekends or not? There are so many options out there for jobs and you will find your perfect fit if you know what you’re looking for. If you’re not fussy, you could make a list of what you don’t want as it might be easier to rule out some jobs if there are too many options.

  1. Engage a recruitment agency in your desired industry

If all of the above doesn’t work or you still need an extra boost with your job seeking, a recruitment agency who specialises in your desired industry can help. Engaging a recruitment agency can help to take some of the stress out of job searching. Recruitment agencies can match your skills to jobs that are currently available, thus finding the best person for the job.

As we said before, job seeking can be hard, but it doesn’t have to be!