by Kevin Donlin,
I just spent the morning reviewing several hundred emails from job seekers across the country, looking for common frustrations among people looking for work.
As you might imagine, many things are bugging many job seekers in this economy.
But I boiled them down to four prominent job-search frustrations.
Here they are, with suggested solutions.
Which ones apply to you?
Frustration #1: “I submit my resume for a posted job and never hear back from employers. Did they even read my resume?”
Solution: Here are three ways to make sure your resume is received and read.
1) Call the employer after applying.
Obviously, you can’t do this if you’re blasting resumes out by the dozens each week, so pick and choose carefully which employers you apply to. The smaller the employer, the more likely you are to connect with a hiring authority by phone.
2) Hand-deliver your resume.
This method really works, as I’ve written about before. People who get interviewed and hired after hand-delivering their resumes do the following:
- they dress professionally;
- ask the receptionist if they can personally give their resume to the hiring manager;
- if refused, they politely request a meeting at a later date;
- leave a copy of their resume with the receptionist;
- call or visit again until they get a meeting.
When you visit a company to drop off your resume, be ready to interview on the spot, if you meet the hiring manager in the lobby – it has happened!
3) Mail your resume.
Nowhere is it written that you cannot mail a resume after submitting it online. With a little sleuthing on the employer’s web site and/or Google, you can find the name of your potential boss and their mailing address. Still unsure? Call the employer and ask!
Frustration #2: “I’m over-qualified for most positions I apply for.”
Solution: First, know that employers may fear your getting bored in a role dealing with budgets in the thousands of dollars, if you’ve worked with millions of dollars before, for example.
And employers may fret that you’ll leave as soon as a better job turns up.
To allay those fears, use your cover letter to highlight your record of long-term employment, if you have one. You can also offer to sign an agreement outlining a minimum stay in a new job.
Also, understand that “over-qualified” can mean “too expensive” for some employers, who fear being able to match your salary demands.
So, explain in your resume and cover letter that someone with your experience can save or earn significant amounts of money. Then, prove it with specific dollars and figures. Ideally, you will show employers that hiring you is like buying money at a discount â€” you can earn or save multiples of every dollar you get paid in salary.
Frustration #3: “Recruiters and headhunters don’t call me back.”
Solution: Lower your expectations. Unless you already have a solid relationship with one, now is not the best time to expect callbacks from recruiters.
Their reasons are many in this recession, according to Mark J. Haluska, Founder & Executive Director, Real Time NetWork (www.rtnetwork.net).
“Most recruiters have a glut of candidates and they’re besieged with unsolicited resumes to fill a dwindling number of assignments. So, before a recruiter ever thinks of calling you, they comb through their database of candidates, looking for someone they know is a proven winner,” says Haluska.
Should you follow up with a recruiter, to make sure they got your resume?
“You could make a call every couple weeks, if only to leave a voicemail. That should eventually result in contact with the recruiter.” But, be on your best behavior and avoid letting any frustration show; otherwise, “your resume will end up in the shredder,” says Haluska.
Frustration #4: “I have no time for networking.”
Solution: You have time for eating and sleeping. Why? Because they are necessary for survival.
Without a job, you will have no food to eat or roof to sleep under.
So make time to network. Even if you have to eat or sleep less for a few weeks â€¦ or watch less TV or relax less on weekends. You can always catch up on that later.
About the Author
Kevin Donlin is contributing co-author of “Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters 2.0.” and “Guerilla Resumes” (Which I review here). Â Since 1996, he has provided job search assistance to more than 20,000 people. Author of “51 Ways to Find a Job Fast — Guaranteed,” Kevin has been interviewed by USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, CBS Radio and others.Since 1996, he has provided job-search help to more than 20,000 people. To learn about Guerrilla Resumes and how it could help you, visit his site at www.GuerrillaResumes.com