11 Apr 2023

Jobseekers urged to prepare for tougher job market

2:48 pm on 11 April 2023
A Hamilton woman says her ten year search for work has uncovered employers bad attitudes to disabled job hunters.

Jobseekers should identify what skills and attributes make them unique and demonstrate those in their application, one expert said. Photo: 123rf

There are concerns jobseekers are unprepared for a toughening job market, despite unemployment levels remaining near record lows.

Kathryn Sandford, head of recruitment company Move to More, said jobseekers need to quit thinking they're in a 'candidates market' and do away with assumptions that landing a new job will be easy.

"As a result, candidates use the same CV and the same cover letter to apply for multiple jobs," she said.

"However, the cover letter should be specific to each role to stand out. Use the cover letter to position yourself better, because the cover letter is the first thing a recruiter reads."

Sandford said despite the tight labour market, with unemployment sitting near a near-record low 3.4 percent, employers were still particular about prospective employees.

"They're looking for attributes and agility and the ability to learn, not so much the technical aspect of the role," she said.

"When we talk to employers they're looking at attributes, personality, how will they add value?"

She said jobseekers should identify what skills and attributes make them unique and demonstrate those in their application.

"People, particularly older people who have been in a safe job for years, believe they will find work quickly because of their experience," Sandford said.

"They don't prepare, they don't get the role, and so they struggle to figure out a way forward.

"They may feel at a crossroads, but the truth is that their CVs probably do not reflect their talent and value very well, and they may have no idea how to position themselves to stand out in the market."

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