Amidst a climate of economic uncertainty, the World Economic Forum reveals that there is a global decline in hiring, leading to the balance of power shifting towards employers.

The MENA region's rapid economic and technological growth has intensified competition in the job market. To stay ahead of the curve amidst emerging trends, widening skills gaps, and candidate demands, recruiters in the MENA region have acted by streamlining their hiring processes, as highlighted in the insightful 'Recruitment Practices in the MENA Poll 2022'. By adopting cutting-edge technologies such as AI-powered SaaS recruiting platforms, organisations can better streamline their talent acquisition process. This enables them to efficiently identify, engage, and hire top-notch candidates, eliminating the risk of missing out on exceptional talent and making it even more essential that your application stands out.

Similarly, in the APAC region, the competition is fierce. Although countries in this region have seen unemployment drop to below pre-pandemic levels and vacancies increase, including in Singapore (127%), the employment landscape is still extremely volatile. Not to mention, in the APAC region, 85% of organisations are now promoting hybrid working, and 7 in 10 organisations are proactively seeking out global talent and embracing remote working arrangements. As employers look to access overseas talent pools, candidates now face intense competition.

When you consider that one in five employees in the APAC region intend to switch to a new employer in the next 12 months and how unpredictable the market is, candidates need to prepare and adopt strategies that help them stand out against the rising competition.


Tailor your CV and profile for the job you want

To truly shine among other job applicants, it's essential to customise your CV for every job you apply for. This involves delving into the company and job description, identifying the specific skills and experiences they're looking for, and highlighting them prominently. Simply submitting a generic CV will not suffice.

For example, if you're applying for a marketing role, name the specific campaigns you were involved in and the marketing software you have expertise in, whether that’s Adobe Creative Suite or marketing automation tools such as MailChimp or HubSpot. 
With a staggering 92% of recruiting firms in Dubai using sites including LinkedIn and Facebook to recruit candidates, it’s essential that you also tailor your social media to the role if it’s used as a professional profile. 


Be specific

Employers are impressed by specifics in your CV and profile. Quantify your accomplishments using numbers and percentages to showcase your impact in previous roles. For example, instead of stating "increased sales," use "increased sales by 20% within the first year." Specifics create a stronger picture of your achievements and provide evidence that support your claims, allowing employers to grasp what you can offer their organisation.


Consider the company's culture and values

Research a company's culture and values before applying for a job. Ensure your professional profile reflects your alignment with them if they align with your own short and long-term goals. Employers seek candidates who share their values and fit with their company culture as it indicates more longevity in the employer-employee relationship.

To research a company's culture, start by reviewing their website, social media accounts, and employee reviews on sites like Glassdoor. Look for indications of the company's mission, values, and work culture, such as how they treat their employees or how they approach customer service. For example, if a company highlights some of their perks to be free therapy session, mental health days, and wellness allowances, it’s a great indication that the company prioritises their employee's well-being and happiness.


Consider the tone of voice and image you present online

In today's digital age, it's crucial to be mindful of the tone of voice and image you project online. Your social media, personal websites, and blogs are an extension of your professional persona, and potential employers are likely to review them before making a hiring decision. It's therefore essential to ensure that your online content accurately represents your expertise in your field and is appropriate for the public domain.


Do your research

It's essential to conduct thorough research on the company, the position, and the industry before applying for a job. This will give you a comprehensive understanding of the employer's expectations, which will enable you to tailor your CV and profile to meet their specific needs. Moreover, it will help you prepare for the interview and demonstrate your knowledge and enthusiasm for the company and the industry. For instance, if you are applying for a marketing role in a tech company, understanding the latest digital marketing trends and the company's target audience will give you a competitive edge during the hiring process.


Show off creativity

From creating a unique CV design and a portfolio of your best work, to a video that introduces yourself, showcasing your creativity through innovative ways can help differentiate you from other candidates. However, be mindful not to overdo it and ensure that any creative elements you include are appropriate for the job you're applying for. For example, a graphic designer may create an eye-catching and visually appealing CV to showcase their design skills, while a social media manager may use their social media profiles as their portfolio to demonstrate their content creation abilities. By incorporating creative elements, you not only grab the employer's attention but also demonstrate your skills and suitability for the role.


Time for a change? We’ve got your next role waiting 

Having placed candidates in 14 countries across the globe, we know our stuff! By getting to know you, our experts will help you excel in your career, whether it’s entry level, mid-senior, or c-suite roles you’re looking for.

We’ve done the work, so you don’t have to, developing long-standing relationships and cultivated bases in the Middle East and Asia – it's what gives us an edge that others struggle to match. With careers in digital, marketing, and technology, from big name brands to “new kids on the block” start-ups, it is an exciting time to explore opportunities. Contact MCG Talent and benefit from a unique service, tailored to suit you. Let us help you find your next role.


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