Job-hunting for senior executives: When the network isn’t enough

by Cameron Edmond22 Jul 2013

Senior executives searching for a new position will need to up the ante by adopting modern recruitment processes, an experienced recruiter has warned.

“Many of the senior executives looking for work are over 50 years old and may have been in their previous role for many years, potentially without having gone for a job interview in decades,” Ben Fuller, sales director at Bullhorn Australia, said.

The “hiring lull”, caused by a lack in business confidence due to the looming federal election, has resulted in the six-figure executive roles evaporating from the job market, with many executives having to bite the bullet and take lower positions.

However, it isn’t all bad news. The break is viewed by Fuller and Bullhorn as a perfect time for executives to focus on brushing-up on their job-hunting skills, and ensuring they are aligned with the current trends and methods of recruitment for when the job market revs up again.

“They have a wealth of professional experience but are out of step with modern recruitment processes which can hinder their chances,” Fuller said.

Although experience is important, Bullhorn recommends executives turn their attention towards social networks, and communicating how their experience relates to the changing industry, instead of their previous accomplishments.


Key HR take-aways

Looking for another position? If you haven’t searched for work in a while, nor have you been recruiting, the game may have changed. Fuller suggests executives invest in the following activities:

  • Consult with an expert careers advisor to develop a plan for landing the job you want.

  • Learn how recruiters, employers and candidates are communicating with each other via social media platforms.

  • Make sure your LinkedIn profile is complete and compelling.

  • Be current and accessible – get a Gmail account, a smart phone and a tablet.

  • Talk in current terms and focus on the past 5-7 years; let go of terms like “back in the day” and “we used to”.

  • Keep your CV work history concise, tailored to each potential role and highlight relevant instances where you’ve made an impact.

  • Match your knowledge and leadership skills with sectors and companies that are growing, innovating or re-inventing themselves.


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