Are you applying for jobs and not receiving a response from the recruiters?
Knowing what is going on is the first step to fixing what’s wrong and turning things in your favor. Job hunting is hard and tedious, but by using this simple troubleshooting guide, you can diagnose the reason for the silence that follows your applications and get right back on track.
With the New Year approaching, it might be just what you need to gain control and take advantage of the increased recruiting activity that usually happens in the first quarter of every year.
Here are 4 reasons why your job applications are not generating the reaction you expect:
#1) You application is not focused to a role or a company- skill set mismatch
#2) Your resume is not passing the 10-second scrutiny
#3) Failure to do as told
#4) Reasons beyond your control
Let’s look at this list to learn how to fix your job application problems and get more interview calls.
What You Will Learn:
If I ask you “What role are you aiming for?”
Is your answer:
None of these are good answers; this is like googling food when you want a lasagna recipe.
Not knowing what role you want to go into and without a list of prospective employers that you want to work for, you are on a wild goose chase.
When your job application is not targeted and focused, you are applying for any or all the jobs that remotely match your skills and end up getting nothing in return.
Take some time in creating that self-awareness by asking the following questions:
Knowing the answers to these questions will narrow your choices and improve clarity, so you are not simply driving around but have a specific route to your destination.
Resume writing is an important survival skill for a successful professional life.
Follow these simple rules:
1) Write a resume that is targeted to the role you are applying.
2) Remove things that do not relate to the current role or job you are applying for. For example: If you gave music lessons in the past, that information need not be on the resume.
3) It is not an autobiography, so do not write everything.
4) At the same time, do not feel the need to hide your gaps, age, education, GPA or anything else that you suspect are not your strong points. You don’t want to be working for people who have such narrow perspectives anyways. But the choice is yours.
If you strongly don’t want to talk about some aspect of your professional life, you don’t have to put it on the resume.
5) Remember that the more experience you gain, your resume has to be become proportionally shorter, highlighting your achievements. Come off as a leader and not a doer.
Check out Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer’s resume here.
6) Do not feel tempted to exaggerate or outright lie about your skills and extent of expertise.
7) Create a clean, error-free and easy to read the resume. If you find your writing skills lacking, read: “The Elements of Style”- by William Strunk Jr (Author).
8) Technical skills do not compensate for grammatical shortcomings. Read this: I Won’t Hire People Who Use Poor Grammar
9) Maximize the use of keywords related to your field in your resume.
10) Don’t take a cookie-cutter format and fill in your details. Format your data in a way that your content gets highlighted. Remember, content sells, not the format.
11) Avoid using flamboyant fonts, backgrounds, margins, headers, etc.
12) Get your resume reviewed by at least two other people in the related field. It is better if these reviewers are not those offering free resume critiques on popular job sites. They are surely good, but they do it for a living and will always find something they could fix for you.
So a friend, a family member, a colleague or a mentor might be a better choice.
13) Include a cover letter with your resume even when it is optional. Especially, if you there are things you want to explain to the recruiter that are not part of the resume
For more tips and how-to guides on resume creation and refinement, check out:
People are quirky, companies are quirky too. So, if a job application comes with a set of do’s and don’t, it is important to follow those.
To do so, first read the job ad thoroughly. And,
Respect the rules irrespective of how compelled you feel about your suitability for the role.
You might do everything right, but things still might not work out. Sometimes, it is not your fault.
In any of these cases contributing to reason 4, there is nothing for us to do, but simply move on.
If the answers to these questions are a YES, then you are in a good place.
Wait for the phone to ring and the email to land in your inbox. Great things are ahead.
All the best!
About the author: These tips are provided by STH team member Swati.
Thank you for reading and I hope this article was useful to you. Please share your job hunt secrets and tips with us. Let us know your comments and questions below. All the best!