You created the resume. You composed the cover letter. You applied for the job opening and now you wait. Waiting...it's a hard place to be when you desire action in your job search.
Want to increase your chances for getting an interview? Make sure you have not overlooked the 10 Reasons You Are Not Getting Interviews.
- Spelling or grammatical errors in a resume or cover letter - Be sure to use spell check, proofread, read aloud, and have someone else review your documents. Your first impression will generally impact your chances for an interview.
- Not using an appropriate resume format - Use the most appropriate resume format to reflect your experience and skills. Decide if the chronological, functional, or combination format is best for you.
- Too embellished - Your resume and cover letter should flow and be understandable. Don't get too technical, use flowery language, or stretch the truth with your experience and skills. If you were interviewed, could you substantiate the facts you presented? The employer will be thinking "if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."
- Wrong name or company in the cover letter - It might be convenient to apply for multiple positions and use a similar cover letter. Did you remember to change the inside address and name? The employer will not be impressed if you slip up on this detail.
- Unqualified - Yes, there is the "hope" factor or "give me a break" factor, but most employers are looking for applicants who have the skills. An employer may not be interested in spending time, resource, and money to train you. Find a way to obtain the training and reapply down the road.
- Overqualified - The question a potential employer is asking is, how long will he stay? Employers cannot afford to hire and rehire in the short term. Would you be satisfied with the position? It's probably best for both parties to avoid a lose-lose situation.
- Wrong job targeted - Can you really do the job? Be realistic. If you are really out of your league, do not expect a reply.
- No openings today - No means "no," but consider a follow-up call down the road. If you send an unsolicited resume to a company, they have no obligation to respond. Openings could occur in the future. Instead, focus on companies that are actively seeking new employees.
- Not being available - Since you included your phone number and email, make sure you can be contacted. If you leave for a week of fishing in Canada, can you return a call or email? Will you sound focused and professional?
- Lack of follow up - Want the interview? Make a call to human resources after the application deadline or after a week of applying. What is the status is with the interviewing schedule? Is the employer extending the application deadline? Are they currently reviewing the applications? What is the projected timeline for interviewing? Obtaining additional information that can help you move on with your job search and indicate your interest in position. Remember to say thank you.