Many think that sending out resumes may be sufficient to find a job, but job searching takes time, effort and patience. Here are five common myths about hiring and employment:
Myth: Changing jobs frequently is an indication of instability and lacking job loyalty.
Truth: It used to be the case that having many positions in a short amount of time – or job “hopping” as it’s usually termed – indicated that a candidate could not make up their mind or was unreliable. However, today, with increased mobility among employees, employers understand that many candidates decide to explore different industries and use their transferrable skills to change jobs more frequently to stay challenged. This and other reasons, such as taking time off to travel, dealing with family emergencies or going back to school, are increasingly becoming more acceptable for employers. Just make sure to address any concerns the employer may have during the interview.
Myth: The job search is just about sending out as many resumes as you can.
Truth: While it’s important to be diligent about sending out job applications, it’s more crucial that you do your research and match your qualifications to the companies you’re interested in. Often, being active through networking and speaking to people that work at a company you want to get a job at can be just as valuable as sending a polished cover letter and resume. You also need to be strategic about your job search rather than applying for a job just for the sake of applying and make sure to tailor your materials for each job description. Remember to always send a tailored cover letter addressed to the hiring manager with your resume.
Myth: Employers will continue interviewing until they find the perfect candidate for the job.
Truth: Though employers may be looking for the best fit for a position, they are often aware that there are few, if any, candidates that will fit the exact profile they are looking for. Thus, although they will strive for the perfect candidate, employers will also hire individuals who have desirable professional traits, relevant experience and reliability. Often, employers will end up looking for candidates that will contribute effectively to the company and work hard.
Myth: Posted jobs are the only way to get hired.
Truth: Only about 20% - 50% of positions are filled through job applications submitted to publicly posted jobs, while 50% - 80% are filled through networking and referrals. That does not mean that your only chances to get hired will come from knowing someone within the company; however, it means that there are a lot more “hidden” and informal opportunities than the ones that may be made public. To find these hidden and unposted opportunities, it’s important to network and be active. Networking through building relationships with people in your field of interest can help you discover more openings.
Myth: You will not be hired if your work experience is unrelated to the job.
Truth: Though relevant work experience is among the first things a hiring manager will look for, it’s also true that hiring managers are cognizant of the way skills transfer across sectors and industries. If you are interested in a position that does not relate to your past work experience, it’s your job to make your skills and expertise marketable to the employer. Be sure to highlight why you are a good fit for the position in your cover letter and during the interview even if you’ve worked in a different industry in the past.