Let’s face it, when you’re looking for a job, you want it as fast and as easy as you can get it. It can be overwhelming and time-consuming searching for a job. It’s true that you likely won’t land an interview, or job for that matter, without actually applying for job openings (unless they come through Networking and weren’t advertised). However, when it comes to applying to jobs, you’ll actually have a better chance at landing a job interview if you focus on quality over quantity of job applications. You will benefit more by spending increased time on individual job applications—customizing your professional resume and cover letter and doing research on the company before sending in your materials, than on shooting out dozens of generic responses to any job openings you see. Here’s why…
Whether you’re searching for job opportunities while working, going to university or you’re unemployed, you really only have a certain amount of time and energy to focus on job searching and preparing your job seeking materials (Is your LinkedIn Profile updated?). If you spend your entire time finding anything you’re even remotely qualified for and sending generic resumes and cover letters, you’ll end up wasting a lot of time and are more likely to get discouraged faster when you don’t receive any feedback or requests for interviews. It’s more beneficial to you to take your time finding a few job openings that really match your interests and qualifications and put all your effort into customizing your materials to suit the position.
One of the main reasons employers give for not contacting job candidates is because they don’t even meet the minimum requirements they listed on their job posting. If you’re responding to dozens of job postings that require a minimum of 3 years in the field while you only have one, you might be wasting your time. Sometimes employers do call in candidates that don’t quite have the length of experience they’re looking for, but it’s wise not to spend a lot of time sending out your application materials unless it’s a position that strongly appeals to you and that you feel you could qualify for in other ways. Especially for jobs that don’t match your experience level, you’ll have to put all your effort into that job application in order to prove to hiring managers that you can be an asset to the company despite other factors.
Another reason employers don’t call back job candidates is that their resume or cover letter was very general and didn’t convince them that they have the experience they’re looking for in the position. You’ll be more likely to get a call-back if you spend time looking at the company, analyzing what type of candidate they want for the position and then customizing your resume and cover letter to show that you have the skills they’re looking for.
Try it and see what happens!
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