12 On Your Side: Tips of the trade: Online job applications

12 On Your Side
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News 12 at 11 o'clock / Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- It's a new year and you may be looking for a new job. News 12 is On Your Side with the secrets to help you stand out on an online application.

Georgia and South Carolina's unemployment rates are still above the national average. The job competition is tougher than ever, especially online.

"Oh, its just too much," said Brittany Smith, who has been looking for work for over a year. "It just makes you wonder. Do you really get it or is it really what it is?"

The majority of the jobs Smith applies for require an online application. It makes her wonder if hers get lost in the mix with the hundreds of others.

"It's certainly changed a lot. I will say that," said Randy Hatcher, president of MAU Staffing.

Hatcher says more than 80 percent of applicants apply online for some of his positions.

"I think you will see a lot more companies doing that because it's saving them time, saving them labor, and it's automating the process," Hatcher said.

News 12 asked Hatcher his secrets to applying online. How does one stand out over a computer screen?

"Well, if you are one the first ones to respond to a job, you're increasing the likelihood that they are going to see your resume," he said.

Beat them to the punch! Check job postings at different times of the day and apply right away. Don't just submit applications during the standard 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

"Another thing is the keywords on your resume; a lot of the search engines are looking for keywords," he said.

For example, if you're looking for a maintenance mechanic position, use words in your resume that match with words in the ad. Use words like "maintenance technician," "injection mold machines" or "industrial machines."

Another tip to getting your application to stand out online is to take the extra step to make a good impression.

"If it's a local company you're replying, try dropping by and writing a note and leaving it with the receptionist. You never know, you might be the only person that dropped by and left a handwritten note for somebody," Hatcher said.

The top mistakes that will get you disqualified are typos!

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