I recently had the unpleasant task of sorting through over 250 applicants who had applied to a job posting. Grant you, the position was entry-level, so I knew that I'd get a lot of 'kids' who haven't had much experience job hunting. But I was still surprised at how poorly most of these candidates handled sending an email and their resume. So this blog is dedicated to the helping both the young and old to be better job seekers.
There are still a lot of people without jobs today… good people, experienced and hard-working people. And many of them are genuinely confused about why they don’t get a return call or interview after they apply to a job posting that seems to be perfect for them. If this is you, read this and do a self-check to see if you are making the mistakes listed below.
Today, more than ever, your first impression is critical. HR staff or hiring managers have to sort through so many more resumes than usual due to the economy, so they are being pickier. You will only get one chance to make a good first impression on them, and that is via your cover letter and resume.
Here’s a fact of hiring that no one wants to admit but nonetheless it’s true, and you should know about it: In order to deal with the high volume of job applicants, the first priority of a recruiter or HR staffer is to reject as many people as quickly as possible. That way they can then focus on the applicants who have potential and require further screening. If you change your way of thinking and accept that they are looking for a reason to reject you, then you’re way ahead of the game!
If you get nothing else out of this article, at least repeat this mantra in your head while you’re looking for work, sending resumes, and all through the screening and interviewing process, “You never get a second chance to make a good first impression.”
A generic cover letter or email – or none at all – tells them you are just applying to job after job and don’t care which job you get. No one wants to hire that type of person, and they don’t have to, since there are many other people who take the time to research and write custom letters.
This article was originally published in RECRUITING BLOGS.
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