A vast majority of people who want to be in employment long for the day they will land their ideal jobs. An even bigger percentage of people long for the day they will land their first jobs. Statistics show that about 50,000 Kenyans graduate from tertiary institutions every year but one in every five Kenyans aged between 15 and 34 is unemployed. On the other end, the Kenyan job market is now experiencing what is known as under-employment in which people hold jobs that do not match their skills. Professional recruiting firms are increasingly seeing more and more people applying for jobs, with BrighterMonday receiving a job application every 17 seconds.
A look at these statistics indicates that the job market in Kenya is highly competitive and you need to do your best to get ahead. It has become a common occurrence for job seekers to make numerous applications with no call for interviews or to attend numerous interviews without clinching the jobs. Well, there is hope because below we will share tips that can help you get a job despite the competitive nature of the job market.
You Apply for Jobs Without the Necessary Qualifications
Every job advertisement has a qualifications part. The qualifications typically describe the skills and competencies that the ideal candidate should have to enable them to perform their tasks effectively. Granted, you cannot have all the required qualifications so do not be discouraged by the fact that your qualifications do not match those of the job. However, always ensure that you have at least 80% of the minimum requirements to increase your chances of being called for an interview
Make your CV stand out by customising it to the requirements of the job that you are applying for. Additionally, you should always ensure that your CV has only the necessary information to capture the attention of recruiters quickly. Apparently, even recruiters like your CVs short and sweet. If you are not sure how to structure your CV properly, you can get help from BrighterMonday’s professional CV services.
2. You Don’t Sell Yourself
A CV and an interview are opportunities for you to showcase the value you would bring to an organisation if you are hired. Think of it like selling a product to a customer. Your main pitch is based on the pain points that the product addresses, which is also known as your core value proposition. It is your job to showcase your suitability for the job by matching your skills and experiences to the job and by showing interest in the advertised position.
Always remember that your skills and competencies are the commodity you are selling so make sure you package them attractively.
3. You are Overqualified
Many times, employers in Kenya complain that job seekers do not have the right skills for the available jobs. This has been blamed for the high rates of unemployment and underemployment in Kenya. However, on the extreme end of the spectrum is that you could be applying for jobs that are below your qualifications. This means that once you get the job, the company may not be able to afford your services, or you might get bored and lose the desire to work, which will eventually have you leaving the company. This will mean that the company has to start recruitment all over again, which is costly and makes the business lose valuable time. This is why candidates complain that they apply for jobs that they are more than suitable for but which they never get. As a result, always ensure that you apply for jobs that match your skill set so that employers can give you a chance.
4. You Show No Interest in Interviews
Once you submit your CV and you are found qualified for the job, employers will want to invite you over for an interview to get to know more about you. The fact that you passed the recruitment stage indicates that you have been found fit for the position and it is up to you to put up a strong case for yourself.
An interview is a chance for the company to get to know more about you and for you to get to know more about the company. Therefore, when you get that chance to go sell yourself, make it count. Demonstrate that you are interested in helping the company solve its pain points. As a rule of thumb, always ask questions regarding the company and the position. Here are a few tips on the kind of questions that you should ask during interviews.
Getting a job can be a tough job. The running joke is that there are people whose job is to look for a job. However, while the job market is very competitive, you can always cut through the competition to clinch that position you have been working hard to get. With the right qualifications and an ability to sell yourself, you might land that job you have been earnestly looking for sooner than you think.
Join BrighterMonday Kenya’s Marketing Manager on a Facebook Live session on Tuesday, 4th June, 2019 as she unpacks this topic.