You are off to your initial employment interview with a recruiter or manager for an exciting position with a new prospective organization. Personally, you feel very confident, upbeat and positive about your resumé, your professional qualifications for the job, your ability to perform, and making a new transition. However, you wonder of the various competition for the same opportunity and you definitely want to make a positive and unforgettable first impression. You deeply desire to emphatically distinguish yourself from all the other qualified candidates and internally, you seek an edge that will help you land the job with this particular employer. You eagerly want to connect with the recruiter in an significant and intangible way that will make a profound statement that you are the 'best person' for the job.
As a business owner, I have a great deal of experience with the process of advertising, locating and identifying highly coveted new talent, interviewing prospective candidates and ultimately making key business decisions for securing people who have served on my rank and file staff, as well as in senior management positions with my firm. Like all decisions, some have been great, while others still leave me scratching my head and wondering "what was I thinking?" As I can personally attest, as well as the collective opinions of many of my colleagues in similar situations for themselves, or those at other firms - it is never an exact science. Generally speaking, it is extremely difficult to provide any guarantees towards any specific formulas that will always translate into success with hiring people.
In some cases, individuals that have provided stellar resumés, have sometimes lacked the personal motivation and necessary drive to succeed once hired. Many of these folks would often feel particularly entitled and deserving of substantial titles, benefits, perks and salaries, while simply viewing expected performance as more of my organization's risk. In contrast, some prospective candidates that may have lacked the ideal professional experience and/or specific qualifications, easily made up for the lacking in their credentials with spirited enthusiasm, professionalism, consistent punctuality, an astonishing ability to learn on the fly and a strong, unyielding dedication to achieve. As mentioned, these decision are proven to never be an exact science.
The corporate recruiter
The corporate recruiter is widely regarded as one of the most important persons at most firms. They typically perform a critical role as they consistently provide the talent, or life blood of an organization. They are usually the first face of the organization a prospective employee sees when considering a career decision and are primarily responsible for locating, identifying and securing the talent that will help the organization grow and maintain its competitive edge while moving forward.
The corporate recruiter is certainly no stranger to receiving tons of resumes from numerous interested job candidates and is very accustomed to meeting people from all backgrounds, of all demographics and various personality types. When asked, most will tell you that beyond the typical resume, it is the intangible things that often make the most impactful impression when interviewing with a job candidate.
I spoke with four corporate recruiters that individually represented four distinctive industries. One represented a reputable firm in the financial industry, another worked for a large hospital organization. One recruited for a governing municipal administration and the last recruited for a well known IT firm. The following is a consensus of their suggestions, of what would make an indelible and positive impression on them that goes well beyond the typical resumé or application.
Five ways to make a strong and impactful impression on a corporate recruiter
Lastly, always thank the interviewer for their time - and don't be too shy to ask for the job. Don't make excuses of any kind and be assertive. Good luck!
Ed Crenshaw is a US Navy veteran, diversity practitioner, disability subject matter expert and creator of the innovative “Preparing Employers to Reintegrate Combat Exposed Veterans with Disabilities” (P.E.R.C.E.V.D.) diversity training program. He is also the author of the books, “The P.E.R.C.E.V.D. Principles” and “The Employers Guide to Understanding Hidden Conditions Related to Suicide.” As a well-renown professional speaker, Ed is a passionate champion and respected advocate for people with disabilities.