Whether they've been traversing the job market for some time or are preparing for life after graduation, Millennial job applicants could always use additional help in their job searching efforts. One key way they can get ahead of the competition is to see what their potential employers are looking for in their search efforts.
According to Fox Business, one of the biggest improvements that Millennial workers can stress in their resumes, cover letters and interviews is their soft skills. Citing a recent study from American Express and research firm Millennial Branding, the news source found that managers' common sticking points for Millennial workers include their lack of soft skills in communication and interpersonal interactions, their time management skills and teamwork capabilities. Good ways for workers to improve their abilities in these fields is to gain experience, whether they find internships, volunteer work or part-time jobs.
Specific areas of improvement that Millennials should make sure they always follow include keeping a professional manner in the workplace and in their correspondence. Many workers may be overly concerned that new employees will use slang and text language when speaking and writing to others, so avoiding these faults by all means is strongly advised by experts. However, Millennial tendencies to send short and direct messages can be effective in some areas, such as in social media skills. Being able to harness Twitter and Facebook effectively may help separate a worker from the larger field.
At the same time, that social media prowess can be detrimental as well. Many Millennials can misrepresent themselves online, whether they post content that isn't effectively work-safe or their online persona doesn't match their real-life demeanor. Keeping your online personality in line with your real-life representations is a strong way to build your skill set and impress potential bosses, many of whom may not expect to be impressed.
The online revolution also has managers concerned about workers' manners. Being able to make eye contact and speak clearly and confidently will be major boosts to any applicant's reputation, especially in fields that weigh customer service heavily like sales or hospitality. Professionalism and the right attitude go hand-in-hand with basic manners, and having such soft skills will help any job seeker turn their efforts into reality.
For those Millennials concerned about their workplace skills, contacting a staffing services company may be the way to go. Not only can the professionals they employ be able to advise and guide clients toward better methods of conduct in the office, but they can often even help workers find contract positions, improving their skills for the near future.
The Fiscal Times found that another survey of leaders in business found that they want their workers to ensure they're well-versed in basic skills, including critical thinking, problem solving and writing ability. Practicing these methods can take many forms for workers, but being able to have a flawless cover letter and present examples of how they overcame challenges in their previous experiences can only pay off for those willing to try.
Technical and computer-related skills are also strongly considered on the list of expected skills, though they're lower on the top 10 for many business leaders. However, this is a strong area of expertise for younger workers to gain ground on more experienced competitors. While they shouldn't overlook getting more experience in many important aspects of their applications, being able to code, develop or work with a wide variety of programs can do wonders for the average hopeful candidate. The best approach, however, is to work on all of these elements concurrently.