JOB SEARCH / APR. 27, 2014
version 3, draft 3

How to Find a Job if you are Over Qualified

Over Qualified Applicant

When the HR manager looks at applications and sees that you are over qualified for the position, several questions arise such as whether or not the company can afford to hire you or not and why you would need the job anyway when you could do better in another company.

Offer an Explanation

Even though, you don’t want to sell yourself short, you may have to downgrade your resume just to fit in, after which you need to prepare yourself for an explanation to the hiring manager. Most companies are seeking stable employees and may feel that you are just looking for something temporary until you find the job that you are really seeking. Make the facts clear to your prospective employer by bringing up the subject of your over qualification in your cover letter.  If you don’t, it will still be noticed and brought up in the interview.

Sell Yourself

In the interview, let the employer know how your skills would be relevant to the job. Demonstrate an understanding of the industry by doing your research beforehand. Show how your skills will fulfill the role. For example, if you once worked in corporate sales and you are switching to become a travel agent, you could showcase your communication skills and how you would be able to talk customers into staying with the airline.

Tone Down the Resume

If you are over qualified, you may have things on your resume that don’t apply. Don’t make the mistake of leaving those things on your resume, especially if it is not related to the job. Of course, you should be proud of your accomplishments, but some things should be left unsaid. You can list the place of employment and your job titles, but only include the job description that best suit the position you are currently applying for.

Contact a Job Recruiter

Get in touch with a recruiter who specialises in the industry that you are trying to get into. The recruiter will be the liaison between yourself and the employer; showing that you have the ability to demonstrate your effectiveness and capability in working for the company.

Leverage Your Maturity and Experience

Most people who are over qualified have been working for a while and often are mature individuals. Use your maturity and experience to show your reliability, work ethic, dedication, knowledge and communication skills, especially if you have worked with other companies for long periods of time. You might even offer to use your experience and skills to help in mentoring younger staff members. This will promote the chance for you to land the job.

Place Yourself in the Right Industry

A change of career may mean that you have to apply all that you have learned over the years to the right industry. Try to fit into an industry that could effectively use your skills. For example, if you have always been in finance, a small business owner would benefit from your skills, no matter what the industry, but you could go a step further by targeting an industry that needs a turnaround on profits.

You don’t have to feel intimidated by the job market when you are over qualified. You are at an advantage than someone with basic qualifications. Use your qualifications to your benefit by following the tips suggested.

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