4 ways to stay competitive in today's job market

Posted at 8:04 AM, Aug 01, 2017

With the globalized job market, it has become increasingly difficult to stay competitive as a worker in today’s landscape.

Without consistently creating additional skill sets that differentiate you from someone who has either graduated more recently, has a higher degree or has more experience in the field you’re looking to work in, people are finding themselves unemployed and uncertain about their futures.

Here are four ways to differentiate yourself, so you stay competitive in the job market today.

Demonstrate your value

While some companies have trended toward hiring overseas or relying on freelancers to lower costs, others realize the value in staying local and loyal. 

Knowing and demonstrating the value you bring to the company could be the difference between its choice to move offshore or stay with you. Giving examples of the money and time it will save by using someone close not only shows you know your value but also shows you have the company's best interest in mind.

Expand your network to increase your net worth

Think outside the box when it comes to networking. Just because people you meet aren't in your industry doesn’t mean they don’t know someone who is. You never know who could facilitate an introduction. You also may switch industries in the future, so keeping relationships close and not burning bridges is important.

To be valuable to your connections, try the “give, give, get” method — be more interested in giving in your relationships than receiving. When it comes time to make an ask, your contacts will likely be happy to help.

Building social skills will not only help you land introductions but will also help you in the workplace. Emotional intelligence offers a competitive edge that can support you in keeping your position or getting an eventual raise.



Widen your scope

On average, people go through 10-15 jobs in their careers, even within the same company. Whether you’re looking to elevate your position within your organization or are considering transitioning, broadening your skill sets will benefit you in the long-term. For instance, consider taking on various challenges you may have previously declined.

Even if your field is niche, stay current on the direction the industry is going and expand your skills based on where the movement is headed.

Earn a credential

This idea could feel daunting if you’re working full time, but a place like the University of Denver's University College knows how challenging it can be to juggle work and school, so they created programs specifically for working adults offered online and evenings.

For example, people who work in communications and want to work their way up in business or marketing could benefit from a master’s degree in Communication Management. They could also build a more tailored skill set with a graduate certificate in PR or Marketing Communication earned in half the time.

Earning a credential can benefit a working adult who wants to climb the corporate ladder, take their career to the next level, or switch industries entirely. In fact, some companies offer tuition reimbursement, so look into your company's policy, and don't delay moving forward.

Whether you want to move up in your field or change careers, consider the many options available to you by visiting University College's website.