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 Show the Company That You Care!

By Joe Stein

It seems like a pretty obvious concept, the idea that you should really try to show a prospective employer that you want the job.  For some reason, however, many Job Seekers fail in what seems like a simple task due to their actual actions, or (in some cases) what they failed to do.

It is almost like some Job Seekers are playing “hard to get” in an odd attempt to get the company to want them more.  I think this strategy rarely works in romance and is even less successful in a job search.

There are a considerable number of simple tasks throughout the job search interaction that may seem routine or even inconsequential, but are important to a Hiring Manager when evaluating you.  If you fail to complete them, then the Hiring Manager may determine that you do not want the job that badly, that you lack attention to detail, or (even worse) that you are just plain lazy.  Certainly none of these conclusions will assist your attempt to land the position.

So, what are some of the items that occur in the job search process that you need to make sure to fully complete?  Below is a list of some of these tasks.

 -  Include a Cover Letter – Always attach a Cover Letter when sending a resume. When applying online, don’t forget to attach it as a document.  If you are just giving a text box (when online) for a Cover Letter, then “cut and paste” your Cover Letter into the provided area.  Don’t forget that a Cover Letter should always be customized for the position and company.

 -  Complete the Application Entirely – Not sure how this happened, however, more Job Seekers than ever are submitting incomplete Application documents.  A Resume is NOT a substitute for an Application.  The documents serve two distinctly different purposes, as one is an official signed company document and, of course, the Resume is just a summary you submitted.  Do not just complete the top and sign the bottom, and please don’t take the application and write “Please See Resume”.  Filling out an application completely does not take that long to do and should be an easy time investment if you are truly interested in the position.

 -  Customize – Take your Cover Letter and Resume template and always customize it for the position and company you are seeking.  Read the Job Description and pull out specific requirements that you possess and make sure to highlight those areas in your Cover Letter.  If you don’t do this, it just provides the impression that you are not willing to make the effort necessary

 -  Sell Yourself – Don’t just list what you have done, but rather take the time and highlight your accomplishments, whether it is important projects, awards won, or budget savings found.  This will allow you to differentiate yourself from those who have either not accomplished much or do not want to make the effort to do this in their job search.

 -  Be Available and Ready – If you provided your phone number, you should expect it to be used to contact you.  Try as much as you can to always answer your phone but if you can’t, the return the voice mail promptly.  Hiring Managers may start calling you as early as 8am in the morning, so make sure you are up and ready no later than that time.  It is a head scratcher when a person calls about a job during regular business hours and it appears they have woken the person up.  If you work nights, then note this on your Cover Letter and provide a best range of times to call.

 -  Arrive On Time – There are very few excuses for tardiness.  Plan accordingly to provide yourself enough time to make it to your destination with room to spare.  If you happen to arrive too early, then park in the lot (or nearby) until it is time.

 -  Give Thanks – The final touch is as important as any other.  When you are done with a step in the process, give thanks.  This might as simple as an oral “thanks” for someone who accepted your hand submitted application, to a note of appreciation after an interview.  They are all important and will be noted and appreciated when received.

Conducting a job search requires a person to complete a number of simple, yet important tasks.  Failure to correctly and completely finish these items gives the Hiring Manager a negative impression of either your interest level, your attention to detail, or probably the worst…that you are lazy.  Don’t be that person and instead get done all that is required.

As always, best of luck in your job search!