Experts state to create a story within a job ad. Online job boards and social media have made it simpler to apply with one click for every position advertised, but should you?

Statistics indicate that men will apply if they fit 60% of the qualifications while women are more discerning at 90%. As such, some organizations fill their funnel with applicants that apply quickly to what they see online. This causes organizations to rely on artificial intelligence (AI) to weed applicants out. They are forced to automate the process by excluding those without specific keywords or post-secondary education just to get through the influx of information.

While some job applications are a direct result of financial necessity, those gainfully employed should be more selective.  Knowing what they want in a new job helps to be selective rather than impulsive when reviewing opportunities. See: https://grasslandsgroup.com/grsblog/2020/05/21/career-path-strategy/

Position Specific Factors to Consider Before You Apply:

1. Job Duties and Responsibilities

Is this position a lateral or career-enhancing opportunity?  Do the daily tasks, for the most part, appear to be stimulating?  If you don’t enjoy the work, then applying elsewhere is high, despite your salary or job title.

Will the tasks listed utilize the skills you have garnered over the years, but, most of all, will they use the skills you most enjoy?  Before applying for any position, make a list of your most important skills and highlight those that you most enjoy.  As you read a job posting/ad, compare the listed tasks to the skills you highlighted – how many duties do you despise on that list? Then, consider if you have the mandatory education they seek.

2. Remuneration

The compensation offering of a position is much more than the posted salary.  Often the perks are not advertised.  Make sure you understand exactly what you get currently – make note of your salary, what you pay for benefits (and what that policy includes/excludes), any other financial perks like RRSP/pension (matching?), etc. Is the cost of living less or more than you pay currently? Is the commute more or less than current?  Would you pay for parking? Etc.  Make sure you are comparing apples to apples when evaluating when to apply. https://grasslandsgroup.com/grsblog/2021/04/08/does-salary-matter-in-a-job-offer/

Company-Specific Factors to Consider Before You Apply:

1. Location

Whether the position is within a reasonable commute or involves relocation, this is of great importance to work-life integration.  A one-hour commute adds two hours to a workday, 10 to a workweek, and 40 to a month – that’s another full work-week away from home!  Balancing that discussion with the cost (financial and emotional) to relocating is important.  Your time away from work, and proximity to extra-curricular activities, family, and good schools, is not something to brush aside for a new title and salary.

See: https://grasslandsgroup.com/grsblog/2020/06/26/a-career-in-a-smaller-centre-isnt-all-that-bad/

2. Organization Mission

Just as you documented your preferred skills, it is important to document the primary values for which you will not compromise.  Make effort to research the prospective employer to ensure their goals, business conduct, and products do not go against your primary values.

3. Organization Culture

How does the company, and its employees, interact with their customers and each other?  Check out reviews online and read those that provide a non-biased review.  

4. Job Security

Some industries are more volatile than others.  Is the employer in an industry that is declining as that could indicate a decline in market share is probable.  Have there been reports online about the executive leadership that cause you concern?

Analysis

Now that you have reviewed the criteria above, your decision-making style will determine whether you should apply:

  • Intuitive – Review what you know about the position and compare it to the criteria, going with your gut on how well it meets your needs.  Is it causing you concern or ulcers – run away!
  • Analytical – Review the criteria and assign each a weight (scale of 1-10) based on how important you feel that specific element is to your job fit.  Then, add up the scores for each factor and see what it totals.  If it is a percentage you are comfortable with – it is probably a good fit.

Deal Breaker

If there are unknowns, and you still are intrigued, then apply – you can withdraw from consideration at any time in the hiring process.  Make sure to ask the necessary questions to determine if you proceed.  If the positives do not outweigh the negatives by a large margin, then think twice before applying (or continuing the hiring process).

Other articles on this topic:

https://grasslandsgroup.com/grsblog/2020/10/06/compatibility-with-your-employer/

https://www.glassdoor.com/blog/how-selective-should-i-be-when-applying-for-jobs/