02 Sep Applying for Jobs and Getting Nowhere? 3 Tips That Make a Difference
If you are applying to jobs over and over and getting no responses, then its time to change your game. Reboot. Take responsibility, stop applying the same way, and change your approach. There is so much you can be doing differently.
Yes, it’s true that most jobs are NOT secured by simply applying online through job boards or company websites. However, for all job applications, at a minimum, you need to submit an application for the position to get into “the system.”
Common Job Application Bloopers
- Submitting a “standard” résumé that is not tailored to the job description.
- Submitting a résumé full of typos, grammatical errors, and mis-spelling.
- Using boring descriptions rather than keywords and “power verbs.”
- Applying to the wrong job; committing Random Acts of Application (RAA). An RAA is applying for a job even though you have no relevant skills or experience.
Fact: Hiring managers want to find the best candidate. They truly are looking for a good fit and the best hire for their position. In almost all cases, there is a job description. Read it! The hiring manager is listing the “specifications” for the job. Your opportunity is to use your application to show exactly how you fit their specs.
Put yourself in the hiring manager’s shoes: They could receive hundreds of résumés for just one position. They know what they are looking for yet they have to pour through stacks of documents that simply provide the chronological output of total strangers.
What if your submission hit them between the eyes – figuratively – with all the reasons why YOU are the BEST candidate for the job? Hint: job descriptions are written describing the perfect candidate – a person who doesn’t exist! So don’t be discouraged if you don’t meet every one of the requirements.
Sell yourself with every application. Position your background and qualifications to show them that it is a wise investment to interview you. The application process is NOT ABOUT YOU; it is about the reader.
Do not use it as a venue to ramble on about how brilliant you are, how you were awarded top recognition in things the reader doesn’t care about or, worse, how you are the “perfect” person for their job. Nobody is. Everybody has gaps in some areas and it would be wise to point them out as “opportunities to learn” both in the application and in the interview.
Three Tips That Make a Difference with Your Job Application
- Research Before Applying: You may find amazing insights about the company, this particular division, that department, and more by researching on the web. Use these insights in your cover letter and application.
- Revamp Your Cover Letter: Make your cover letter page one of your résumé. Yes, add a cover letter in the same word or PDF file rather than attaching two separate document files. Your new cover letter should look like a formal one-page cover letter and your résumé will start on page 2. The new cover letter will only talk about the main skills and experiences you have that correlate to the specifications of the job description. Do NOT simply regurgitate your résumé. That’s boring and irrelevant.
- Highlight Relevant Matches: In your cover letter, highlight the skills and experiences they are looking for, based on the job description. You may even find that you left some important things off of your résumé (skills, tasks, experiences) that this position needs. Add them in. I don’t need to remind you – always be 100% truthful, of course.
In summary, change your application approach, stand out, and aim to be called for an interview.
What are your application challenges or questions? We want to hear from you in the comments section below.