Have you applied to 1000’s of jobs and are wondering, “Why you didn’t get the interview?” Job hunting can be brutal. You’ve spent hours upon hours entering the exact same details on each employers website, and you’re starting to think that you are missing some secret to scoring that interview. Or, is there a glaring mistake on your resume or cover letter that is turning the hiring company’s away?
Sometimes you’ll get lucky and you will get an email from the company. You get excited! You open the email, and you see:
Dear Job Seeker,
Thank you for your interest in Crappy Company, and applying for the position of Working Hard and Making Bank.
After careful consideration of your qualifications, we regret to inform you that we will not be moving forward with your application for this position.
If you are interested in applying for future positions please take advantage of our job agent functionality, which enables you to be rejected automatically when future positions are posted.
Thank you for your interest in Crappy Company and we wish you all of the best in your job search and future endeavors.
Human Resources Dept.
Yeah, that sucks.
So what is it? Why are companies passing you up?
Reasons Why You Didn’t Get the Job
If your applying to a bunch of jobs and none of them are getting back with you, you may be making one of these mistakes:
- Are you even qualified for the job? – Okay, you’re a volunteer tambourine player for the local old folks home, and you just applied for a position as the lead record scratcher for Skrillex. Yeah, the employers not going to “drop the beat!” They’re going to drop your resume in the trash. When applying for jobs, make sure you’re applying for something you are qualified to do.
Is everything spelled correctly?
– We all know Spell Check is awesome, but it doesn’t catch everything. You could “right this” instead of “write this,” and that would suck because now you look like a moron. You’re not, but simple mistakes like this get you thrown in the trash. Always have a friend check your work when possible. If no one is around, take a break, then come back and proofread it.
- Did you fill out all of the application fields? – Filling out multiple applications for multiple companies can get extremely tiresome. Did you miss any fields? Make sure you’ve filled everything out (Except for the salary requirements. That’s debatable, but if you’re desperate, it’s probably a good idea to enter this as well).
- Does Your Resume Suck? – You’ve put a lot of work into updating your resume, but honestly, is it really any good? Personally, I’ve revised my resume multiple times, and after three years I realized that my resume sucked. It listed my jobs and job descriptions, but it didn’t give concrete examples of why I was a rock star employee. I lacked a centralized theme or story. This is a whole blog topic in itself, but it may be worth working with a professional resume writer.
- Are You Targeting Your Resume? – This one is important if you want the employers search engine to pick up your resume out of the 100’s of applications they are receiving. You need to update your resume for each job you plan to apply. Yes, this is a pain in the ass. Yes, it will help you get seen. Yes, you need to do this if you are relying submitting your resume to get a job (As opposed to utilizing your network.) Employers career management systems match the job description to the candidates resume. The higher your score, the higher your chances of being seen!
- Are You Using Your Network? – When searching for a job, you’re network is your number one ally.
Use your network to find your next job. Tell your family and friends you are looking. Don’t beg. Just let them know that you are looking to make a move into a certain industry.
- Do You Have the Right References? – Choose your references wisely. Make sure you’ve picked people that will speak highly of you. Use LinkedIn or Facebook to see if any of your connections are friends of the hiring manager.
- Did You Write a Cover Letter? – The cover letter is a great way to catch the recruiters attention. Be interesting and show recruiters why you would be a perfect fit for the job. This is your time to shine. Make use of it!
If All Else Fails
Lastly, remember it’s not you! Probably… Why you didn’t get the interview? Because there are thousands of people applying for the same jobs.
I’ve talked to hiring managers that had over 60 qualified applicants apply to one job. He got creative and found ways to sort through the pile. One mistake, and he moved on to the next one.