Matt Sedgwick, founder of London recruitment company, Key Focus Consulting

Jobseekers should view the Covid-19 pandemic as a catalyst for positive change, rather than a brake on their search for work.

However, they need to make the most of a seven-second opportunity to shine… and deal with their ‘digital footprint’.

That’s the view of Matt Sedgwick, founder of London recruitment company, Key Focus Consulting.

Surveying a jobs market badly damaged by the health crisis, he said an already bad situation for jobseekers had been made worse by employers tightening their purse strings and by recruiters expecting people to jump through endless hoops to get the posts they wanted.

“Reports are coming in of jobseekers taking huge pay cuts to take a job and even being rejected after seven or eight stages of interviews,” he said. “And they are being asked more than ever to prepare presentations on case studies for their interview – also known as free consulting.”

He added that employers were adding to people’s stress levels by failing to communicate with them.

“Employers are sitting comfortable on their thrones and not understanding that talent in the jobs market is trying to communicate with them,” he said. “Feedback today is more important than ever. With mental health being hit hard by this crisis, being ghosted in the Covid world leaves a bitter taste in the mouth.”

Matt said it was now for jobseekers to be in control of their destiny. They should take a long look at themselves in the mirror, accept who they are, and stop comparing themselves with other jobseekers, peers, friends and the “all-seeing oracle that is the employer”.

People had become more attached to their own consciousness during the pandemic, and it was time to harness this and work out exactly what they had to offer companies.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re a school leaver, a general manager or a chief executive, you have something different to offer than anyone else, something that is not replicable, and that is you,” he added.

The key to landing the job was an individual’s achievements, and their “unique combination” of skills and personality. For this, the CV was a jobseeker’s best friend… but also the most ignored document they possessed.

Matt said a hiring manager or recruiter would spend just seven seconds looking at it, and 84 per cent of CVs ended up in the recycling bin, so it was crucial to make those seven seconds count.

“Load up your editing software and ask yourself, ‘If I had seven seconds to read this, what would I be looking for?’” he added. “The answer is, ‘My achievements’.

“There is plenty of literature and books on producing a bulletproof CV; now is the time to act and bring yours up to scratch.”

But jobseekers also had to remember that in an era dominated by online interviews, hiring managers were finding it hard to identify ‘the one’ and were donning the private investigator hat, getting out the magnifying glass and looking for an individual’s murky backstory.

Matt said it was vital that an individual’s LinkedIn account told the story they wanted it to, since 98 per cent of recruiters used the platform to assess people’s suitability for a role.

And it was important to go through Facebook accounts: “Old comments you made, the comments made about you, the pictures you uploaded, that hangover post, all affect your personal brand.”

But any post to a social media site, or comments on blogs, also formed part of a person’s digital footprint and needed addressing.

“Auditing, managing and curating will always keep you in the running for that job,” said Matt, and he suggested these steps to boost a person’s chances:

  1. master your cover letter
  2. learn about leveraging video to accompany your CV
  3. learn to master the techniques of interviews.

Addressing jobseekers, he added: “Taking these steps and focusing on yourself while Covid restricts your movements and changes the way employers will interact with you will be the best investment in yourself that you can make.”

Matt said after a person had mastered this approach it would be time to apply again for that dream job, and he predicted: “I guarantee there will be a seismic shift back in your favour.”

You may also be interested in these articles:

Advertisers

Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In May 2020, FE News had over 120,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.

Podcasts

We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.

Events

FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page