Let’s say you’ve had your eye on working for a certain NYC company for a long time. You’ve decided to apply for a position there. How can you become a standout candidate?

Or, you’ve seen a position listed for an opportunity you think would be perfect for you. How can you help your candidacy?

The answer to both questions is the same: research the company! Why? Because when you write a cover letter or even edit your resume for the particular position (and you should always tweak your resume so that it showcases how you fit any single position), having done some research on the company will help you create an even more powerful resume/cover letter because you’ll see how your particular skills, background and education can help solve the problems and challenges faced by this company.

Research also will help you during an interview because not only will you know how you can help an employer (as mentioned above), you’ll be able to discuss these issues more thoroughly with the hiring manager. Most people don’t do much research on a potential employer and so the fact that you have and that you can speak to some of its challenges will impress the hiring manager greatly. Trust us on this!

Read below for some tips on how to research an employer so that you’ll be able to knock a hiring manager’s socks off.

  • Your first step is to do some easy Internet research. Go to the company’s website and take a look at as many of its pages as you can. Read about its history. Read the bios of its leaders. Read its news releases. Read its sales/services pages. Read it all. And take notes.
  • Google the company’s name and see what comes up. Is the company being mentioned in the media? What are people saying? Has the company announced a new offering, a merger, or something else? Take note.
  • Take a look at the company’s social media feeds. What is it mentioning in its updates? What does it appear to be focused on? Are customers complaining and praising the company? What else are they saying?
  • If the company’s stock is publicly traded, if its SEC documents aren’t published on its website (they probably are, FYI), call the company and ask for a prospectus and the company’s annual report. These documents are a treasure trove of the company’s challenges, goals and successes, written in an objective manner. You’ll see the “real” challenges, goals, etc. the company faces, not the everything-is-great missives from its PR department.

Then take what you’ve learned about the company and see where your skills, background and experience can be of benefit to the company within the position in which you’re interested as well as within the bigger picture. If you’ve noticed, for example, that followers are complaining about customer service on the company’s social media feeds but no one seems to be answering them there, mention how your social media management skills can help them manage these complaints.

In other words, study the company so that you can see what problems you can solve for it. Remember that companies hire individuals to solve problems. What problems and challenges can you help solve?

When looking for problems to solve and challenges to meet at a new Manhattan-area company, send your resume to the recruiters at Winston Resources. We look forward to hearing how we can  help you take your career to the next level.

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