“What am I doing wrong? I’m getting no responses to my resume, and not getting any interviews!”
Here at the Job Search Bible we’re lucky enough to work with 3 job search and career experts who can help with your problem.
The latest question put to our experts is:
“I’m not getting any responses when I submit my resume / CV for job applications – what am I doing wrong?”
And here are their expert answers…
Firstly are you applying for the right roles? Often we think we’re the right person for a role, when in fact we don’t quite have the right skills or experience.
To have the best chance of standing out have a great and covering letter tailor your resume / CV.
A covering letter is your first impression.
Start by matching the key characteristics of the role to you and detailing where you have relevant and/or appropriate experience.
Put yourself in the shoes of the interviewer and think about the benefit you bring to their organisation and the role. It’s likely to be two or three graphs listing the benefits of hiring you.
Moving onto you resume / CV. Here are 3 steps to help you:
- The Look – make sure it’s clear and concise.
- Be Creative – most resumes / CVs look the same. Why not consider a different layout? Search for creative CVs on Google for great examples of different formats.
- Be Relevant – tailor it to each and every role. Highlight your skills, competencies, knowledge and experience for the role.
Follow these tips and you’ll find you’ll get a better response from the applications you make.
- The one resume / CV mistake that gets noticed immediately by employers
- Top tips to get your resume noticed by recruiters
- Job search tips that really work
The corporate marketplace is becoming more and more competitive. A candidate nowadays needs to know how to stand out among many other jobseekers.
The reasons for not getting any responses can vary.
You should ask yourself the following questions before applying to a job:
- Did I write a customised cover letter (providing 5-10 good reasons why they should hire me!) and a CV that is customised to the company / industry and the specific job position? (or does it just sound like a normal standard letter / CV?).
- Did I meet all the job requirements and person specification details that the company asked for?
- Did I proofread both documents with regard to spelling and grammar?
- How is my online presence on various social media websites? Are there any inappropriate comments, pictures or videos that might prevent me from getting an interview? (Bear in mind that many companies nowadays check out candidates’ online presence!).
If you can answer all these questions with YES your chances are pretty good of getting an interview invitation. No more wondering “what am i doing wrong?”
- 10 tips on how to write a resume / CV
- 8 tips for writing a winning cover letter
- How to abbreviate on your resume / CV
You’re not necessarily doing anything wrong, but you should be following up – this can help a lot.
Sometimes the follow up doesn’t work if:
- It’s an online application and the resume is being screened out electronically for some reason.
- The company had to advertise the position even if they already had a referral or internal candidate.
To combat problem # 1 make sure your resume / CV contains all the skills and the job title listed in the online job posting. You may think it is obvious that if you say you are proficient in MS Office you know Word, Excel and PowerPoint.
But if the recruiter’s screening system has been told to look specifically for those software names, it won’t recognise Office as a valid search parameter.
You can’t combat problem # 2 directly, but you can find a way to network with people that work for your target companies so that you have a chance of being referred before the job posting is advertised next time.