Recruiters are constantly searching for amazing candidates to fill the millions of open jobs in the U.S. And the search can be hard! After all, reading thousands of resumes and talking to potential candidates about a particular role can be time-consuming. So why not make it easier for recruiters to find and hire you?
How do you do that, you ask? By being the most informed candidate possible.
Sure, skills and experience matter, but according to HR insiders, a candidate who is knowledgeable about the company and is highly engaged is a must-hire. Your goal as a job seeker should be to stand out from the crowd for all of the right reasons, and at all of the pivotal moments, from application to negotiation and, ultimately, on the job.
One employer said, “An informed candidate is someone that knows about the company — that’s done research and that has read the job description, [who] understands the opening so that when you’re contacting them, they’re essentially meeting you half way. It also shows me that that person is motivated because they are doing the work they need to do.”
With a depth of information that job seekers can’t find anywhere else, Glassdoor is the only place where employers can source truly informed candidates. Job seekers who use Glassdoor fully — from job listings and company reviews to salary reports, interview questions, and even photos — are more engaged, knowledgeable and have the right expectations of an employer. Recruiters know this, and we’re here to reveal the steps you need to take to become the informed and irresistible candidate of their dreams.
1. Learn The Ins & Outs of the Company
Here at Glassdoor, we believe that shotgunning an application to a company that you sorta know about through friends or reputation is no way to job search. Do your homework by reading recent news articles about the company, check out their Twitter page to get a sense of what they stand for, click around on Google to read about executives who work there, and be sure to look for any red flags like recent lay-offs, public scandals, or public uncertainty. Do this to get a holistic view of the companies you’re interested in. Don’t cross any company off your list just yet, because one red flag or corporate mistake does not necessarily point to poor company culture.
2. Do Your Research
Once you have looked at the companies you’re interested in from a “100-foot level,” dig in for a closer look. Head to the company’s Glassdoor profile to investigate things like their company rating (3.3 is the average on Glassdoor), reviews about the CEO, insights and feedback from current and former employees, and be sure to scroll through the photos, videos and mission statements. Click on the ‘salaries’ tab to dive deeper into the compensation specifics. After all, money matters. Glassdoor has salaries, wages, tips, bonuses, and hourly pay based upon employee reports and estimates.
Next to the ‘Salaries’ tab, you’ll spot all of the available jobs at that company. Dive in, not just to the jobs you’re interested in, but also to see what else and where else the company is hiring. In some cases, you’ll notice estimated salary ranges in job listings to help people instantly know what they could be paid before applying to a job. This way, if a company is majorly misaligned with your expectations, you can rethink whether or not they’re worth applying to after all.
3. Make Your Resume Stand Out
Now that you have done your homework, you’ve likely narrowed down the list of companies that interest you. Go a level further by diving into the company mission and culture — once you get a sense of these, you’ll be able to strategically narrow down your list in order to apply more thoughtfully. From here, you’ll be able to dig into what you should highlight from your work history in order to show that you’re a perfect fit for this company — customizing your resume to the job and the company is key.
Make your resume shine by:
- Crystalizing your brand to show the value that you’re bringing to the table.
- Front-loading accomplishments, then describing how each was achieved with numbers and facts.
- Showcasing transferable skills (such as leadership and managing change) as well as soft skills (such as problem-solving) and hard skills (like knowledge of a particular software program).
- Showing culture fit based on your research and mutual interests, revealing that you’re just as interested in the company and what it stands for as you are for the job itself.
4. Prepare for the Interview Before You Get It
Search interview questions and get insights into the exact questions recruiters and hiring managers at your ideal company will ask. You can often browse dozens of interview questions that are asked of candidates applying to the specific role that you are. Preparing in advance and over time will prevent last-minute cramming and get your mind churning about the specific anecdotes and examples of excellence you want to share. Plus, learning about the interview experiences of others offers additional insight into what the company is really like.
Here’s an easy cheat sheet:
- 50 Most Common Interview Questions
- Behavioral Interview Questions
- Brain Teaser Interview Questions
- 45 Questions You Should Ask In Every Job Interview
5. Continue to Learn Throughout the Recruiting Process
As you progress through the interview and recruiting process, continue to fact check the information you’re being told by hiring managers and recruiters with the reviews of employees on Glassdoor. This will inform the questions you ask and allows you to dig even deeper into the company culture as well as to the dynamics of the specific team you will join.
Be sure to:
- Click ‘Follow’ on the company’s Glassdoor profile to get regular updates, job alerts and notifications.
- Read employees’ real feedback on certain perks and benefits like free lunch, PTO, health insurance and professional development.
- Follow up with the interviewers you’ve spoken to and the current employees you have met.
6. Negotiate Like a Pro
It’s important to understand that negotiating your salary is a perfectly normal part of the employment process, and recruiters expect it! According to studies by Glassdoor, men are more likely to negotiate salary than women. But studies show this “negotiation gap” disappears when information about other job applicants’ negotiation experience is public information. Therefore, knowledge is power.
Before heading to the negotiation table, make sure you:
- Know Your Worth. Get a free, personalized salary estimate based on today’s job market to understand your current value and explore ways to increase your pay.
- Think base pay, and beyond! Everything from support for education and training, parental leave to vacation time, and moving expenses are up for negotiation.
- Be confident and equipped with information.
7. Ask As Many Questions As Necessary
93% of job seekers today want to be informed about all aspects of a company prior to accepting a job offer, according to a Glassdoor site survey, so don’t think you’re nagging the recruiter. It’s their job to answer your questions and help you make the best decision. After all, they want to hire the candidate best suited for the job to improve retention and the company ranks.
Can’t think of any more questions? Read these first:
- 7 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Accepting A Job Offer
- 12 Sneaky Questions You Can Ask To Uncover Company Culture
8. Say “Yes” If the Job & Company Are Right For You
Feeling 100-percent sure? Go for it! Say yes and start living the life you’ve always wanted with a job that you love. And remember, just like you benefitted from all of the reviews, insights, and feedback from millions of people on Glassdoor, be sure to return the favor. Leave a review on Glassdoor about your experience.
Now that you’ve got the tools to become a candidate that recruiters cannot resist, get out there and find a job that fits your life! Don’t forget, we’re here to help every step of the way.