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What Do Singapore Recruiters Want To See?

Now, we all know the hiring outlook for 2017 isn’t great. In fact, it’s pretty gloomy. How then, can you stand out amongst the crowd when you’re applying for a job? We asked 3 managers from 3 very different industries for their opinions on some questions we had. One from a creative agency, another from Singapore’s most well known startup, and lastly, from a MNC.

Jeffrey Lim, Carbon Interactive

What is one deal breaker for you in a resume?

There are a couple actually.

If one is applying for a design role, the design/layout or resume will be the first screening for me even before meeting the person.

Photo or the lack of it is a pet peeve for me. I would like to have a preview of how the person look like before an interview. (If not, social media links need to be provided)

Can you give an example of an interviewee who really impressed you/stood out? Or if no one has impressed you, what is one thing you wish interviewees would do.

If the person get shortlisted for interview, it’s no longer about his/her resume during the interview anymore.

Anyone that impressed would carry the belief and values I have as well as what the company stands for. In this case, I would look for someone with Passion, Hunger and Teachability since it ’s era, many things we know yesterday, today change tomorrow.

Jenny Chan, Carousell

What is one deal breaker for you in a resume?

A resume that is longer than 2 pages. I don’t require a candidate to chronicle every detail of their responsibilities. I only want the juicy important bits that will make me want to call you up for an interview. This also means, no copying and pasting of an entire job description obviously copied from the internet onto the resume. We typically screen more than 50 resumes in 1 sitting. Times that by 3 or 4 pages per resume, that’s how frustrating it can be if every single one resembles a thesis.

Can you give an example of an interviewee who really impressed you/stood out? Or if no one has impressed you, what is one thing you wish interviewees would do.

I used to hire sales people for another tech startup before Carousell. One candidate walked in to the room prepared with a presentation trying to sell me my company’s products (very ballsy). He took time to research, found out what sort of subscription models and packages we sold and although some of the details weren’t accurate, he literally pitched, then sold me and the hiring manager the product during the interview. Needless to say, we offered him the role straight away. I wished more candidates came into the interviews better prepared – including reading up about the company and the job scope and making the extra effort to stand out from the rest of candidates who just wants to come in to “look see, test my market value.”

Glory Sim, KPMG

What is one deal breaker for you in a resume?

Referring to another company in the cover letter eg. PwC, EY

Can you give an example of an interviewee who really impressed you/stood out? Or if no one has impressed you, what is one thing you wish interviewees would do.

I once interviewed a fresh graduate who told me that he came from China to Singapore since he was 13 because the family was very poor and he is the only hope to build a brighter future for the family. He started working for a relative in Singapore while he was studying to earn his keep, describing to me how he worked alongside older uncles and aunties in the production line in factory and also in the retail shop. Despite the work and study commitment, he is also a competitive basketball player. He demonstrated his resilience, determination, optimism and maturity through this little life story of his.

Did you find these insights useful?

If you’re currently on the hunt for a job, we hope this helps you in prepping yourself as a better candidate!

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