More than 60% of hiring managers claim that the number-one most impressive feature a candidate might have is a personal website. – Workfolio
1: Personal Websites Help – Here’s Why:
“More than 60% of hiring managers claim that the number-one most impressive feature a candidate might have is a personal website.”
The rise in personal websites has been dramatic – with extremely good reason. According to Workfolio, a tech company that builds apps for professional visibility, more than 60% of hiring managers claim that the number-one most impressive feature a candidate might have is a personal website – and that a candidate with a personal website stands an immediate advantage in regards to favorable visibility. While 60% is a high number in itself, the number jumps closer to 80% in smaller, entrepreneurial, or start-up-style companies. Why should you know about this?
A recent study by Upwork confirmed that the average job posting in the U.S. receives approx. 250 resumes per job “ad” published – and only 4-6 get called in for an interview. While hiring managers and recruiters (should be) doing their best to find the “best” candidate for the role, many hiring managers and recruiters have admitted that timing and visibility largely affect their recruitment process above all: candidates who “stand out” at the right moment may get the opportunity to proceed despite not necessarily being the “best” in regards to technical skillset.
Let’s reframe that fact one more time, just to knock it home: when you’re looking for a job, you automatically stand somewhere around a 0.4% chance at getting the job. However, the more “visible” and “noticeable” you become (in the right way, of course), that number almost instantly jumps closer to 75%. That’s a hell of a shot you got.
Personal branded websites are just one way at becoming more “visible” during your job search – but they are an extremely important one. Creating your own website establishes a few key points almost instantly to your potential future employer:
- You are digitally-literate: you know your way around some tech, which is wildly important to companies of all industries, shapes, and sizes in 2017.
- You are creative, interesting, and unique: whether you are in sales, marketing, or a more operational or technical role, a personal website reminds hiring managers that you are so much more than a black-on-white CV – and you can prove it easily.
- You care: you really, really do. When it comes to your career, your job search, your life, you invest the time it takes to make it clear that you are a heavy-hitter (an “A-Player”) who really cares about his/her future. You are not just another body in a chair. Companies want – need – people who care – period.
“A personal website helps showcase your brand, your values, and your mission for your career.”
At the very least, a personal website is your chance to stand out in the sea of applicants with similar credentials, educational experience, and background. At best, a personal website might even help you land a job. Don’t believe it? According to a recent WorkplaceTrends.com survey, 61% of respondents with personal websites have admitted to being “found” and offered a job at least once in their careers via their personal websites. Impressive stuff.
2: Now that you Believe it, Build It.
A personal website sounds like it can be a massive undertaking, but existing tools through WordPress and its infinite number of themes and plugins make it so that building your personal website has become easier than ever.
In regards to content, a personal website doesn’t need to be incredibly complex, and hardly needs regular maintenance. A personal website works best when it functions in a simple, clean, and fun way.
Start off with a bio: keep it short, succinct, and easily-read – but take the opportunity to really show off your personal brand in a classy, interesting way. Reminder: a “bio” section is one of the only parts of a digital CV that you can really get creative with in regards to content. Double reminder: have fun wit it, but keep it professional of course.
Display your academic credentials, your work experience, some projects you’ve worked on, and an overview of the skills you bring to the table; the details do not need to be extensive. A blog section may take more regular work, but a personal blog shows that you are up to date in regards to your industry’s trends and developments – and you respond actively to them in a smart, articulate way.
Testimonials would also be perfectly-situated on your personal website – and they carry significant weight when job-hunting or otherwise. Active on social media? Make sure your website features all links to your social media channels so people can connect with you directly on other platforms which they may be active on (LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.).
Remember: content is king, but context is God. The content of your personal website needs to be well-written, concise, and creative – but where your content is situated and how it is displayed (the visual elements of your personal website) are just as important. Choose your color theme, your font, your images and your layout carefully – they will all reflect the personal brand that you are trying to convey. Whatever that brand might be, it’s probably something great – so be sure to take the time it requires to invest in all the various elements of a website. It can pay real dividends if you do – and your future career will thank you for it, bigtime.