Standing in a financial district touting your wares on a billboard is no longer a particularly original method of job hunting, but it is one that has yielded results for those brave enough to do it.
The latest person to undertake this technique is Marko Stojanovik, who has been holding a sign in London’s Liverpool Street station and Canary Wharf attempting to secure a role in professional services. Here he is:
Marko is already trending on Twitter, demonstrating that people appreciate the tenacity of those willing to put themselves up for public scrutiny. However, he may have shot himself in the foot – the website he directs potential employers to has a spelling mistake, quite a fundamental spelling mistake considering his vocation. He describes himself as working in ‘mangement and strategy consulting’.
This may seem a small thing, but in today’s market, mistakes like this can sink your chances. Marko was born in Macedonia, but was raised and educated in Australia and New Zealand.
Recruiters suggest that any sort of error is a big black mark.
“Your written application is our first look at your communication style and is an indication as to whether you are someone who is conscientious and detail orientated,” said a spokesperson for Citigroup’s London graduate recruitment team. “It may be that we let the odd error on an application pass, but generally it’s not acceptable. If English is not your first language, then as a minimum we expect you to be competent at both verbal and written business English.”
“The billboard advertising approach is still quite novel and courageous, recruiters like it because a clever marketing tool, but you need the CV to back it up,” added Logan Naidu, CEO of recruiters Dartmouth Partners. “Any sort of mistake will put your CV straight in the bin.”
Marko told us that he wasn’t aware of the error, but says that he’s still had a positive response so far. “I had some luck - received quite a few business cards and gave out a number of CVs, so hopefully something will come out of that,” he said.
This approach has mixed results. Last year, Leicester University students Faraaz Kaskar and Zeeshan Uppal received job offers after three days canvassing potential employers in Canary Wharf last year; Joshua Persky, a US investment banker who wore a billboard after being laid off in 2008 was still unemployed in 2011 and Giles Metcalfe, a Leeds University graduate, secured a role at Legal & General after a Liverpool Street billboard campaign in June 2012.
The suggestion is, therefore, that it works better at a graduate recruitment level.