5 reasons you should apply for the job you don't think you're qualified for

Have you ever looked at a job posting and thought they are asking for too much, I don't think I am qualified? Here are 5 reasons why you should apply anyways!

Job postings can be so intimidating. Whether they are asking for 5-7 years of experience or a litany of qualifications, it can be quite intimidating to apply. Regardless of the job posting, I am here to encourage you to apply anyway. If you are a woman, this advice is especially for you!

Here are some stats about applying for jobs: A gender study by LinkedIn found that women and men research positions to the same extent however women were 20% less likely than men to apply. When they do apply, they are 18% more likely than men to get the job. Women are therefore more selective than men BUT when they do apply, they are just as likely or even a little more likely than men to get the job.

Here are 5 compelling reasons:

1. It's an Employee Market

You've probably heard or read that it is currently an employee market. What does this mean? Many employers are facing shortages right now as there is more demand than there is supply. This means that even without the perfect profile, an employer may be willing to give you a shot at proving yourself in a way that may not have previously been possible pre-pandemic.This is the time to really leverage your soft skills: adaptability, flexibility, willingness to learn, collaboration and emotional intelligence.

2. It's good practice

Beyond it being an employee market, applying forces you to update your CV and be attune to your current skills in a way that you may not be if you were complacent in your current job. Applying without the pressure to get the job gives you the latitude to test the waters and see what's out there.

3. It can expose your gaps - and that's a good thing!

Building on getting good practice when applying for jobs, the process of applying can open your eyes to the areas that you need to strengthen in your resume or your experience. You can learn from this from the applying process as well as the rejection process. If you do get to interview for positions and not get them, you can use those as learning opportunities on what aspects of your profile you need to update whether that is competencies, skills, experience or training and you can work that into your learning and development plan at your current job so that you are better prepared.

4. You just might be ready when the employers get to you

Most hiring process are slow. This is especially true in government: the time between when you apply for a position to when the hiring process is done can be as long as a year or even 18 months. In that time, you continue to build your experience so by the time they get to you you will have grown as a candidate. For example, a position calls for 2-3 years experience. You have 18 months experience and you put in your application. By the time they screen applicants in and move to the next stage of the evaluation, it could be 6 months in which case you will be at the 2 years experience mark. If you never applied you would have eliminated yourself prematurely.

5. It can help you bargain

Applying for jobs may pleasantly surprise you particularly if another employer is interested in your profile. It is always great to be wanted; if you are enjoying your current position, you can bargain for a promotional opportunity particularly in the current market where employers know how long it takes to attract and retain talent.

Moral of the story: APPLY FOR THE JOB! Stop talking yourself out of it and stop eliminating yourself even before you start!

My challenge to you this week is to apply to ONE JOB that you've looked at but have since talked yourself out of applying. Let me know in the comments or send me an email and let me know you did it!