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Job Search Strategies for Under-Qualified Job Seekers


Most hiring managers and employers hire job seekers who have the right qualifications and experience for the job. Those who are perceived as “under-qualified” and “unqualified,” however, are overlooked, no matter how eager they are to apply.

If you think you are already labeled as such by a prospective employer, how are you going to take the challenge?

  • Utilize your transferrable skills to your advantageAdmittedly, there are required qualifications you do not have, but skills such as communication, teamwork, and leadership are typical and universal for all employers and companies, which is why these are transferrable.

    You know you possess the set of skills that comprises the abilities you need to excel in not just one, but many jobs, including the one you are currently aspiring for. Make sure to explain how these skills apply to your target job.

    Examine the job ads and postings you get to read and list down the skills you have demonstrated before, which are needed for these jobs positions.

  • Take an internship or volunteer workConsider getting unpaid work experience in the field or industry you target to enter, armed with some relevant education. Experience helped develop your skills, which cannot be taken away from you, whether you received payment or not.

    If you have considered doing this already, make sure to include it in the experience section of your resume.

  •   Combine a chronological and functional resumeIf you are under-qualified for a target job, it will not be a wise option to place your job history. In fact, it may become more of a liability than an advantage.

    The most suggested resume is one that is a combination of chronological and functional format. This is to highlight and emphasize more on skills and achievements relevant to the target job rather than a chronological list of previous jobs.

  •   Never apply for jobs you are not totally unqualifiedJob ads and postings are like wish lists of hiring managers and employers. Sometimes they become upset when their wishes do not come true.

    Although they cannot expect job seekers to possess all the qualifications listed, their major concern is that they receive so many resumes from remotely unqualified applicants who seek for jobs that do not match them.

    Check how the qualifications are listed in order of importance and take note of them. Who knows, the hiring manager may opt to overlook your weaknesses if you excellently possess the most important qualification of all.

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