Job searching is a time-consuming and daunting task. If you are hunting for a new job, it´s not just the time you need to invest in this process but also a lot of patience. And let´s face it, it can be very frustrating. Because sending out applications, which obviously costs a lot of time, is only the beginning and is usually the start of a lot of waiting. And waiting. And waiting. Waiting to see if you make the cut for that first interview. Waiting to see if you hear back at all. If you got the interview, waiting to hear the feedback. And in some cases, you might never hear back from your application, which can make it extra frustrating and more difficult to get motivated to apply for the next job.
With so much waiting involved, it might be tempting to send out a lot of applications to spread your chances. The more resumes out there, the higher chances of one of them getting back to you right? Never put your eggs in one basket. However, does this also apply to job applications? Does sending out a lot of applications really increase your chances of success?
The answer is simple, no it doesn’t. When it comes to job searching, quality is much more important than quantity. Therefore, you need to make sure that all your applications are targeted to that specific job and that specific company.
So instead of focusing on quantity, focus on the quality of your applications. Here are 4 tips to get you started to send more targeted and focused applications, thereby increasing the chances of hearing back.
- Be realistic
The one thing you can start doing right now to improve your chances is to be realistic with yourself and your suitability for this job. Study each job carefully to evaluate whether you are a good fit or not, be honest in whether you have the right qualifications and how badly you actually want this job. Recruiters tend to receive hundreds of applications where the applicant has just send out the same application to various jobs, whether they are qualified or not, whether they really want the job or not. And recruiters recognize this! Hence, prepare yourself well and only apply to job you are truly interested in and have the right qualifications for.
- Treat each job application as a separate one
Again, quality is more important than quantity. Therefore, instead of sending out the same resume and cover letter to different vacancies, focus on creating high-quality, one-of-a-kind applications by understanding the job description very well and demonstrating why you are the perfect candidate for that job. Why you have the skills and background to fill that vacancy. Why you want THAT specific job. Also, this may be common sense, but make sure you answer all questions for the application, you have mentioned something about all critical requirements and you double-check (or actually triple-check) your entire application before submitting it.
- Create a base resume that you alter for each application
Make sure you have a clean, base resume ready, that you can adapt to fit each vacancy you are applying to. Emphasizing specific experience and skills for that job or adding relevant details for that company. When you start each application with a resume you created for another job, it will be much harder to do so.
- Set-up a system
Set-up a system to organize your job search and keep track of the status of all applications that you sent out or are planning to send out. Block enough time to prepare the different steps of the application process and hold yourself accountable for actually dedicating that time.
How do you make sure your applications are targeted enough for each vacancy?