Do you know where hiring managers are looking on your profile? Here’s what they’re looking at — and what they want to see.
If you’ve been hunting for jobs on freelance marketplaces, you’ve probably found it both a land of opportunities and a pain in the neck.
Freelance marketplaces offer hundreds — sometimes thousands — of remote job positions globally, which makes it difficult to sift through the listings.
If you think you’re having a hard time, put yourself in the shoes of a hiring manager. These marketplaces overflow with freelancers looking for both part-time and full-time gigs. Checking out profiles, much less evaluating who’s the best fit for the job, can be overwhelming.
I’ve had the chance to experience both sides. Developing my personal workflow to filter job posts and send out applications, I eventually gained traction. But when I was given the responsibility to seek out freelancers and build a business’s virtual team, I saw the other side of the table.
To make the hiring task easier and faster, I did what other hiring managers do: I checked out five places on an applicant’s profile. If everything in those areas looked good, the candidate was shortlisted for an interview. (Click here to tweet this insight.)
Want to have a better chance of standing out on your freelance job applications? To get noticed even if 50 other applicants are ahead of you? Here’s are the five spots on your profile you should be concentrating on:
This field is your first attention-grabber. It tells hiring managers if you can do the job. Just like the headlines of blog posts and other articles, your title should clearly describe what hiring managers can expect from you.
Let’s say you’re applying for a social media manager position, but your title says you’re a freelance writer. As a hiring manager, I may not give your profile a second look and may go to the next applicant.
To avoid being skipped over, don’t be afraid to include relevant skills in your title.
For example, if you provide both social media marketing and blogging services, mention that. Your title could say “Top-Notch Blogger and Social Media Marketer.” Don’t limit it to words, either. You can use symbols to separate your job titles, like this: “Freelance Writer | Social Media Marketing | Virtual Assistant.”
This is where you can briefly describe what you bring to the table. This field is not limited to 140 characters like a tweet. It allows you more than that.
But don’t just write about yourself. Take advantage of the space to address common problems and concerns your prospective client may have.
Are they having a hard time writing blog posts? Are they overwhelmed with all their marketing tasks? Is their inbox so full they can’t even find the compose button? Tell them how your services can help. Show how aware you are of issues business owners face, and that you’re there to help. This also positions you as a reliable professional.
3. Work history and feedback
This list, for most hiring managers, is the deciding factor.
You can’t control what’s going to be reflected here, but you can control the experience your current clients will get working with you. Provide the best service you can give to your current clients, however big or small their project is.
If you don’t have any feedback yet, make sure to list your previous job experiences in the employment history section. (Don’t forget to include the dates.) Your previous job title and responsibilities will show hiring managers if you have skills or are easily trainable. The dates will reflect your commitment, motivation and level of grit.
This is where you can back up the claims you initially made in the overview section with samples of your work.
Most hiring managers take the time to check your portfolio to see if you’ve done similar jobs (e.g., a published logo, website, video, blog post or social media page). Be sure to link the items to the appropriate sites when applicable.
For writers providing ghostwriting services, it’s best to showcase only samples where you’re credited for the article. An author bio showing your name is a stamp supporting your skills.
5. Certifications and tests
Don’t take these small badges for granted, as they also present your value and strengths to potential clients.
Fill out your credentials and take the relevant aptitude tests, even if it’s just one per week. Your test scores bring to light other competencies like communication and leadership skills — factors you may not have thought were a consideration for the job, but which a hiring manager may still look for.
Freelancers, have you reviewed your profile yet? Does it address the given points? If not, put yourself in the shoes of a hiring manager — would you be interested in your profile?
Jovell Alingod, a.k.a. The Petite Pen, is a freelance blogger and team and content manager helping entrepreneurs build and maintain a lucrative presence online. Get more from her on her website or via Twitter.