As the glow of summer holidays starts to fade, many workers will find themselves looking to beat the back-to-work blues with a brand new job.
Data released by LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network, reveals that September marks a spike in the number of people searching and applying for jobs.
Figures from 2016 show how some 300,000 LinkedIn members started a new role in the month of September alone.
But while canny employers respond to this demand by listing vacancies in September, the increased competition makes it that much more difficult for a CV to stand out from the crowd.
Speaking exclusively to FEMAIL, LinkedIn career expert Darain Faraz shared his five top tips for updating your online profile or hard copy CV…
Picture perfect: A headshot can help a CV stand out from the others employers will receive
Practise your pose
Employers like to put a face to a name and having a good quality professional photo on your CV will guarantee it stands out.
Three tips for how to make your picture pop
Opt for natural light
Dress to impress
Make sure no one else is in the photo
LinkedIn profiles with a photo receive nine times more connection requests and 21 times more profile views than those without, data reveals.
But you don’t need to hire a professional photographer to get a great photo, according to Mr Faraz.
And even a smart phone selfie can work wonders.
‘The advent of quality cameras built into our smartphones has made creating that perfect professional shot almost fool-proof,’ he said.
Avoid buzzwords (and get others to talk for you)
Networking: Former bosses and colleagues can help you advance your career
‘Team player’ and ‘track record’ are just a couple of the buzzwords and phrases that can turn off potential employers so avoid using them, Mr Faraz warned.
Instead set yourself apart by having colleagues, clients or former bosses sing your praises.
Mr Faraz said: ‘Whether it’s a recommendation from a previous employer, colleague or mutual connection, credible endorsements from others speak volumes and will help your profile stand out.’
Bring it to life
Take advantage of the space of an online CV and upload examples of your work alongside your basic information, such as presentations or design work.
Videos can also be a fun way to show personality, although these might not be appropriate for all industries.
Always keep your CV updated
Many workers make the mistake of only updating their online profile or CV when they are looking for a new job but you should treat it as a ‘living document so you’re ready to jump on opportunities and make new connections as they arise’, Mr Faraz said.
Also bear in mind the timing of your application.
Monday and Tuesday are the busiest days of the week for people viewing and applying for jobs on LinkedIn, and at this time of year the number of jobs posted will be at an all-time high as businesses look to attract those on the post-holiday job hunt.
Work your network
Mr Faraz said: ‘Don’t underestimate the power of who you know. You might not think it, but you’ll already have a wealth of contacts that could help you advance your career.
‘Grow your professional network by connecting with friends, acquaintances and old colleagues to open doors to new opportunities.’