To say the job market will be competitive through the rest of 2020 would be like saying a marathon is merely a walk in the park – a significant understatement. If you are having trouble getting that first interview, chances are that your job applications aren’t standing out enough.

So what can you do about it?

Here’s one of the secret tips we offer as part of our popular Premium Job Search Support Service here at Optimum Consulting.

Secret tip:  Learn how to identify and communicate ‘outcomes’.

In a competitive job market, there is one thing that almost every employer wants to know when they are considering who to hire – who will give us the best opportunity to achieve our goals? Sure, they will want to know about your job responsibilities and how well you carried them out, but everyone is going to give this information on their resume and in an interview. You want to set yourself apart and put yourself in the best position to impress, and one way to do this is to show that you understand the importance of outcomes.

To explain, let’s look at the difference between features, benefits, and outcomes.

Imagine for a moment that you want to invite guests over and need a way to hold water so that they don’t have to use their hands, and so that you don’t have to keep mopping the floor all the time. You decide that you need to buy a few glasses for this purpose:

  • Feature = it holds water
  • Benefit = guests don’t have to use their hands
  • Outcome = both you and your guests can have an enjoyable time.

In other words, features and benefits create an opportunity for an outcome. This is how companies get you to choose their products over others. They highlight the outcome that is meaningful for you rather than just the feature or benefit. Every glass can hold water and can be carried around, but the one who points out why these things matter is likely to get your attention.

Let’s now look at this in terms of job applications. Let’s say you are a financial analyst. Your feature might be that you can analyse complex financial information. The benefit of this is that you can help your employer make better financial decisions, but all financial analysts are likely to offer this! You need to go further by explaining why this is important. In this example, it might be that your new employer will make better investment decisions that will support a continuously increasing company share price.

The same applies when you are explaining your achievements. Instead of saying that you were part of a project that analysed a complex investment decision, you can explain that you were part of a team that generated $20 million in additional value for the company which led to further customer acquisition and growth.

Most people focus on features and benefits – you can set yourself apart by focusing on outcomes.

Would you like to learn how to Identify and Communicate Outcomes?

You can spend hours and hours trying to figure this out for yourself, or you can join our Premium Job Search Support service and get expert help. We’ll teach you how to set yourself apart when applying for new roles so that you are more likely to get that job interview. We go beyond just giving you resume advice.

Get in touch with me or visit our website for more information.

Jason Buchanan
General Manager – Insights and Innovation

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