Technology is having a significant impact on the journey a candidate will face when searching for a new role. From the initial engagement to final interviews, processes are becoming increasingly reliant on technology. This can come as a shock to candidates who have not been active in the market for several years.
Louise Franklin, Associate Partner within the Board Practice, highlights some of these changes and how they can be used to your advantage when searching for your next leadership position.
Be found – make your CV & LinkedIn profile searchable
The growth of artificial intelligence means that even in senior executive search processes, it is important to ensure that both your CV and LinkedIn profile contain key words to help you be found for the right opportunities.
Online searching is often a key aspect of a senior hire process. If you are a CFO looking for roles in private equity, your chances of being approached for the right opportunities will increase greatly by having ‘private equity’ ‘PE’ and ‘Exit’ in your on and offline profiles whether that be through a ‘word search’ on a CRM system, or your LinkedIn profile.
This does not take away from traditional networking channels. Face to face meetings with your senior contacts and executive search firms are vital; however, this should be balanced by ensuring you are as visible as possible across all online platforms to give you the best chance of success in your search.
Increasingly we are being asked by our clients to include an element of online testing at shortlist stage in the hiring process. Testing is traditionally associated with graduate entry level roles, however, the advancement of these tests and the importance that clients place on these, means that candidates should be prepared for these to be included in the process even at the most senior level. We have seen senior candidates fall at this stage in the process due to lack of preparation, and the assumption that the tests will be basic and irrelevant based on their experience and seniority.
These assessments will usually be a mixture of numerical, logical and psychological questions and will vary depending on the client’s brief. Candidates should not underestimate the importance of these; it is vital to make sure you allocate plenty of time to complete them without distractions. We would advise taking advantage of the practice questions available.
Technology is driving the speed and ease of our communication channels. Eton Bridge Partners have seen an increase in the number of international searches with video interviews becoming increasingly common at the initial stages in a search – both for UK and international positions – due to key stakeholder’s diary and travel restrictions.
Candidates should prepare for a video interview in exactly the same way as they would a face to face meeting. Ensure that you are dressed smartly, have a quiet private space and test your connection ahead of the call. As with arriving late for a meeting in person, spending the first 5 – 10 minutes of a video interview sorting out technology issues will not leave your interviewer with the best first impression.
Carry out your own social media audit
The rise of social media since the early 2000’s has had significant impact on the way that we connect with each other and create our on-line brands. Even the most ‘un-tech’ savvy amongst us are likely to have some form of social media account. It’s important to think about this and how your online brand can impact on your job search.
Clients will often look at a candidate’s social media accounts to get a sense of their on-line presence during a search process. We would recommend doing your own social media audit to ensure that you are happy with how you are representing yourself online. Check Google, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn to make sure you are fully aware of the public information that is available to potential employers and search firms. Your online brand needs to be aligned with your professional goals and aspirations during a job search.
In summary, it is undeniable that technology is changing the way that candidates, headhunters and clients interact with each other. It can increase your chance of being visible and found for the right opportunities, alongside speeding up processes with advanced communication channels. However, it can create obstacles too. Information is much more readily available, and processes will often include new elements which candidates should be prepared for.
For further information or help with any of the above elements please feel free to get in touch.
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