I often hear from job seekers that they have applied for dozens if not hundreds of jobs and very rarely get a reply or even an interview. Over time, as the feeling of rejection sets in confidence takes a hit and anxiety and depression can creep in. Many people feel as if they are just not wanted. But, what if I told you, as someone who has been in the employment business for a very long time that often it comes down to the simple turn of phrase “if it’s got to be, its up to me…”.
What do I mean by that? There are two secrets to an effective job search that all job seekers need to know and here they are:
#1 Don’t scatter gun the job search
Using the same resume to apply for a hundred different jobs is what I call the scatter gun approach – in other words all you’re really doing is embarking on a hit and miss strategy. The reality is that not every employer or job is the same so even though there might seemingly be a hundred barista jobs out there it doesn’t make them the same. Employers will be different, types of beans used, menu’s, workplace culture and more. The same for call centre jobs right through to executive management. It is important to tailor each job application to the role and employer you are applying to – take a few minutes to research them on Google, look at the organisations most recent Facebook posts and get a sense of who you are dealing with -then translate some of that knowledge into either the cover letter or cover submission. For each additional ten or fifteen minutes invested in this approach the likelihood of a much better result is heightened. This leads to the second secret, that lets face it should just be normal practice;
#2 The art of the follow-up
In a group session of job seekers, the other day, when told they very rarely hear back from employers when applying for jobs online, I asked the question “did you follow it up?” – the response was always “no”. The art of the follow-up is very simple – every time you apply for a job ring the employer or recruiter and ask them if they have received your application and then say how excited you are by the prospect of potentially being successful and working with them. Chances are you will be one (if not the only) of only a handful that will take the time to do it and most of the time the employer or recruiter will remember who you are – something that is so immensely valuable when it comes to the shortlisting process. Why? Because as they go through the immense number of applications received when they get to yours the memory will be jogged, and they will take more time to review it. Never lose the opportunity to follow something up and to follow it through.