Cracked Job Codes

By: Kalandra Robinson

"I can do that job, but I don't have..." If you've read the classifieds and surfed the web for on-line job sites and said this to yourself, you've felt the same level of discouragement most job-hunters have felt.

Is there any flexibility when it comes to meeting job qualifications? There is, but you must be sure you understand your experiences and that they are actually what the employer is looking for. This isn't always easy, because job listings have a language of their own.

Employers have their own sets of terms and meanings. It's almost as difficult to understand what they are really looking for as it is equally difficult to get the job itself.

Entry-level and Experienced seem pretty simple to differentiate, but not always. Most people think entry-level would mean someone that has either no experience or at least experience that stretch from six months to 1 year. However, entry-level could also refer to someone fresh out of college, or at least 1 year or so.

Experienced could mean having worked 1 year, minimum 3-5 years or no "working experience" but having a graduate degree which sometimes counts for experience.

Skills Preferred and Required Skills definitely have differences, but can be easily be thought of as the same. The word Required is absolute; it says this is a skill you must have. Employers that use the term Required, often only want to entertain prospective employees that have what they are looking for. The term Preferred tells prospective employees what the employer would rather have, but Preferred skills are not necessarily essential to have.

Employers know that the chances of getting the perfect person that has all the Required skills they are looking for is not very realistic. It happens, but not often. Because it has become a challenge to find the ideal candidate, employers often lower their standards and balance it with the best experience they can find. If you have enough proven skills to get you in the door, and the employer feels you are capable of being trained for the rest, your chances increase.

Working knowledge and Expertise in a particular program is not the same. Having working knowledge says you have at least the basics and you are confident in operating the program.

Expertise says you have exceptional experience, are able to explain how it works and are able to use it for advanced projects.

Understanding the concept of what employers look for and knowing how to interpret their terms and language increases your chances for success and getting the job. It will increase your chances for success in getting the job because you will learn to spend your time effectively in applying for the jobs you are more likely to obtain.

Careers and Job Hunting
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