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5 Ways to Stand Out to Recruiters

Recruiters see a lot of candidates in any one day. And we mean a lot. If you want to stand out – which, you do – then you need to find ways to stand out from the crowd.

If you’re in a sea of other candidates, what can you do to push your head above the waves and get yourself noticed? Don’t worry because that’s exactly what we’ll explore in today’s blog post!

1. Fit the Job Specification as Closely as You’re Able

Recruiters are looking to match the perfect candidate with the candidate with the ideal role. If you’re applying to a specific role, then tailor your application accordingly to the job description in question.  

Being hyper-relevant and focused with your application shows recruiters that you’ve done your research and are serious about your application. Think of it this way: if a recruiter asks you for an apple, you can present them with the most beautiful, juicy-looking orange ever, but it’s not what they asked for.  

Meanwhile, another candidate has taken the time to see what fruit the recruiter is really after and has cultivated the sweetest apple to present them with. That candidate gets their foot in the door with the recruiter. Meanwhile, you’re left wondering why your nice-looking CV has yet to cut through.

What Does the Job Description Ask for?

Go through the job specification with a fine-tooth comb and extract what it’s looking for. Is timekeeping particularly important? If so, make that one of the foremost aspects of either your CV or cover letter, depending on what’s asked for.  

Are organisational skills a dealbreaker? Then, yep, you guessed it, highlight examples where you’ve shown strong organisation. It’s all about meeting the job’s criteria, and if there are ten key areas it wants you to hit, you’re more likely to stand out to a recruiter if you meet nine of those criteria than you are if you only meet one or two.  

Does tweaking your CV for every job you apply to take a little longer than it would otherwise? Yes. Is it worth it? Absolutely.

2. Be Proactive and Prompt

Generally speaking, recruiters are incredibly busy people. You’ve got to remember that whilst you’ve probably only applied for one role through a particular recruiter, that same recruiter is looking to balance and place many candidates (in various roles) at any given time.  

Because of this, recruiters tend to prefer proactive and prompt candidates rather than someone who takes weeks or months to reply. It shows that you’re keen and invested as a candidate and really want the role you’ve applied for.  

By contrast, if you’re overly slow with your responses, it can (not always, of course, but sometimes) show a level of apathy – that you’re not overly bothered whether you do or don’t get the role.  

Suppose you’re similarly matched with another candidate regarding skills and experience, but the other person is quicker and more attentive with their communication than you are. In that case, the chances are they’ll be the candidate who gets the job.

3. Show an Interest in the Company

Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it can elevate a candidate in a recruiter’s mind. Whether you’ve been approached directly by the recruiter or applied for a role through their website, once you learn about the business advertising the role, get curious about that business.  

Preparing some questions based on the company or job role has arguably one main benefit – it shows you’re interested! Recruiters don’t just want to place candidates; they want to place the right candidates.  

It’s a big green flag for recruiters when they come across candidates who explicitly take an interest in the company and role being offered. You’re more likely to impress them and more likely to stick in their minds.

4. Ensure Your CV is Formatted Nicely

Place yourself in the shoes of a recruiter for a minute. You’re seeing a large number of CVs every single day. At the very least, ensure everything is laid out cleanly and free of spelling and grammatical errors.  

If you need help with writing, don’t worry because there are helpful tools like Grammarly that can help spell-check your resume for you and ensure that it isn’t strewn with errors. If there are any ways you can make the CV look visually appealing (by using a template, for instance) and add a little bit of style, then this can help, too.

Don’t Go Overboard

An important note on this last point, however. Don’t go so overboard with formatting your CV that it becomes a question of style over substance. Get the content right first, and make sure it’s error-free and well-formatted. Then, as a finishing touch, you can worry about jazzing it up to look nicer.  

Your CV is your opening gambit, so don’t let basic errors like spelling mistakes count you out of the picture before your skills and experience even have a chance to land with the recruiter.  

It might not be the end of the world, particularly if writing skills aren’t a feature of the job you’re applying for. However, when there are those tools out there that can review your writing for you, it can (again, only sometimes) leave a poor first impression.

5. Be Nice!

You’d be amazed at what a difference it makes to a recruiter’s day if you’re kind and personable with them. Speaking to many potential candidates per day, unfortunately there are those people who treat recruiters poorly.  

If you show common decency, good manners and a good attitude when communicating with them directly, it instantly gives the recruiter a sign of your personality and shows that you’ll be easier to work with than someone rude or brusque over the phone.

Browse Our Roles, Today!

So, are you ready to stand out to our team of recruiters? If so, why not check out our extensive range of social carehealthcareeducation, and recovery and criminal justice roles? We can’t wait to hear from you! 

Carry on reading