As recruiters, our job is about more than just finding you your next role and then putting our feet up. It’s just as important to provide you with the best possible career advice so that every role is a rung on the ladder to the job of your dreams. And when we talk about career advice, we don’t just mean ‘make sure there are no spelling or grammatical errors on your CV’ either.
So we asked our managers to come up with their top 10 tips for developing your career. With all that wisdom in the room, narrowing it all down to 10 points was pretty challenging…but we hope the results will be worth it.
When you’re researching a company in preparation for an interview, your understanding needs to go beyond the front page of their website. Make sure you go in with a genuine knowledge of their business, sector and challenges, and an understanding of how your skills and experiences correlate with the company’s wider business objectives.
Be a specialist
Look at market tends and develop those skills that are particularly in demand at the moment.
Jump in while the water’s fine
The UK market is improving and looks set to continue doing so. If you’re looking to move, now is the time to take a risk.
You need to understand your skills and what you can bring to a company before you can expect anyone to give you a try. Truly identify your value proposition or USPs and then target companies who you believe require that proposition. Marketing is targeted – you need to be too.
Put yourself out there
Network within the industry so you know how your skill-set compares in the market and share ideas and initiatives with other professionals in your sector. Develop solid relationships with recruitment partners of your choice so they can work with you throughout your career. If possible, find yourself a mentor who can help your development.
Keep it commercial
It’s hard to differentiate yourself in this market, so key achievements and demonstrable ROI are key points for your marketing CV and interview responses. It’s no longer enough to say ‘I’m really good at…’ without being able to back it up with the numbers.
Digital is no longer optional
Include links to websites, your Twitter feed, your LinkedIn profile and if relevant, examples of your work on your CV. Take every opportunity to improve your social media and digital presence and make sure you have some involvement in digital communications in your current role.
Stay ahead of your game
Marketing is all around you: it’s in your social platforms, it’s in the media, it’s on your way to work. Make sure you take it in. Keep up to date with innovations in your market and develop your skills by attending networking events and courses. Digital is constantly evolving – you need to evolve with it.
Don’t be afraid to look at a range of different businesses. Sometimes the best opportunities are with an SME rather than a blue-chip and vice versa. Wherever you go, every role will bring something to your career.
Don’t hop around
It can be tempting to change jobs frequently for short-term salary increases, but this can be detrimental in the long run as you could price yourself out of the market. Employers appreciate longevity. When you do move, however, you’re likely to benefit more from staying within the sector and moving on up into more senior positions rather than hopping around from one similar job to another.