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Competing with candidates with more experience and skills

By Optimus Ping ·
During an interview, what can give you equal footing with other candidates that have more experience and/or skills? Can demonstrating good customer service, communication, teamwork, life long learning, patience, enthusiasm, and good attitude and other skills and traits help you compete against better qualified candidates. I realize the best advice is to get the skills you need for the job, but in the current market there are lots of over qualified candidates going for lesser jobs...meaning that you may be competing with system admins for tier I help desk jobs. Any advice?

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by JamesRL In reply to Competing with candidates ...

Hiring from a manager's perspective isn't about picking the candidate with the most experience. Its about picking the right candidate for the role.

Point one: Let them know you want the job. Do your homework, research the company, the industry they are in, know about their business before you go in.

Point two: Go for the career, not the job. Pick companies that you would feel comfortable with over the long term and over several roles. Let that perspective show during the interview. Help desk can be a stepping stone to other roles. But be careful not to come across as anxious to leave the role you are applying for as soon as you get another opportunity in the same company.

Point three: Prepare for a Behavioural interview experience. This technique involves telling the interviewer about real life experiences you have had on the job that demonstrate the skill sets they are looking for. You can anticipate many of the things they will ask. Rehearse or make notes about which stories you can tell that will show them what they want to hear. One example: "Tell me about a time when you had a very demanding customer who wasn't easy to satisfy, how did you handle it?"

You may not be aware that you may have advantages over applicants with more experience. More experience usually means they want more money. More experience may mean they are set in their ways.More experience may mean that the employer worries that they may leave as soon as the job market recovers. So don't underestimate your chances.

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