Job seekers need to do more to impress employers – survey

9 Sep 2011

Three out of five employers found candidates had lied on their CVs and almost all of these employers rejected such applications, a survey by recruitment firm Hays has found.

The survey of 1,759 candidates and employers was released in the run up to this weekend’s Career Zoo event in the Mansion House, Dublin, where more than 2,000 jobs will be available.

According to employers, one of the other cardinal sins for job seekers is failing to prepare for interviews. More than half (55pc) say they are usually dissatisfied with candidates’ knowledge of their organisation – a significant rise on candidate performance from the same survey carried out in 2009 (47pc). Some 42pc were also unhappy with how candidates sold their experience and skills – up from 35pc in 2009.

“Our surveys would suggest that there is a clear gap between what employers expect from job seekers and what they are actually delivering,” said Richard Eardley, managing director of Hays Ireland.

“Candidates are still putting as much work into their applications as they did two years ago, with an almost identical number saying they run through potential questions and answers and also carry out research on the organisation they are applying to. However, employers are saying standards are dropping.”

Tailoring CVs to the job

Some 68pc of job seekers say they tailor their CVs according to the job they are applying for, but 28pc of employers say candidates rarely or never tailor their CVs – up from one in four (19pc) in 2009.

“The overall conclusion is that job seekers need to do more to impress employers,” said Eardley. “I appreciate that some job seekers may feel they have to set their sights lower, or widen their scope in the current market, but such a scattergun approach is a waste of time.

“It’s more competitive now than it was two years ago. Employers can tell who really wants their job and who is the most suitable, so job seekers would be better advised to focus on what is the most suitable job for them and put all their energy into getting that job instead of half-hearted mass applications.”

Hays will be hosting a Career Clinic at Career Zoo on 10-11 September, giving advice to job seekers on CVs, interview preparation and career strategy.

Photo: The launch of Career Zoo

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