The dangers of being ubiquitous and four other job-hunting essentials for experienced bankers

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Senior bankers, SVPs and above haven’t been exempt from layoffs at the various banks over the last few months. If you’re a seasoned professional on the prowl for work, here are some quick pointers.

1) Be discerning

The banking circle is a small one where everyone knows everybody, especially if you’re higher up the food chain. Senior candidates could come across as being excessively eager if they send out their resumes en masse – never a good look.

2) Recruit a good recruiter

If you enlist the help of a recruiter, be sure it’s someone you can really trust. Some search firms send out candidate resumes without first informing the job seeker about the particular role. Cindy Tan, director, Captiv8 Talent, says: “I always tell candidates they should always know where their resume is going to.”

3) Please read the job description – don’t just click "apply"

Tan regularly receives resumes from bankers who don’t have the required skills, which have been clearly spelled out in the job advertisement. “Technology has made it so easy for people to just click ‘apply’ without looking at the details.”

4) A little humility is a good thing

Some senior-level professionals appear arrogant if they hail from a good brand and have had a lot of previous success. Seasoned bankers may also lack interview know-how since many stay with the same firm for years. So we say: stay open to advice and coaching from your recruiter, who can identify the main areas of experience and skills which are prized by the potential employer.

5) Accept that sometimes it’s beyond your control and move on

Alas, getting hired can be highly subjective. A candidate could fit the role to a tee and go through all the various interview rounds, only to be dropped at the last minute because an ex-colleague says something that isn’t flattering, says Tan.

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