Tom Sweeney

It's a coming of age tale….

Keep your eyes on the prize…

Posted by sweens on June 10, 2009


And in this case, the prize is your newest job opportunity.  But in order to get that opportunity, you need to have a specific method of applying for opportunities.  This blog serves more as a reminder that when you (the candidate) are dealing with a recruiter or a staffing agency – you need to put yourself in their mindset.

 We look for ‘the’ candidate and not ‘a’ candidate.

 What does this mean?  It means you should avoid sending in your resume to a recruiter saying that you are interested in any positions they have open which may meet your skill set.  This translates’ into – you are open to any opportunity rather then the right opportunity.  This has the same effect as applying to multiple jobs with the same company or recruiter.

 I have said it before, but your resume should be tailored to a specific job.  Sending in the same resume for numerous jobs makes a recruiter wonder how you can be the right fit for one job, when you think you can do multiple jobs.

 Remember a company wants something specific!  Whether they go through a staffing firm or they do their own hiring – they have a specific list of requirements which you should try to meet with every application.  Aim to be ‘the’ candidate when applying for a job, rather then ‘a’ candidate…

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2 Responses to “Keep your eyes on the prize…”

  1. Matt said

    I would echo this wholeheartedly, and go one stage further. If you have a very real interest in a specific role, there is a distinct possibility that numerous others have the same feelings (especially in this current economic climate). Follow up sending your CV with a phone call; the intention is not to “pester” the recruiter but as the writer has so aptly put it, to put yourself “in the recruiter’s mindset”.

    Often you will have skills and experience that aren’t communicated to their fullest extent on your CV, and it is in your best interest to spell out to the recruiter just what attributes you have that make you so right for the role. Don’t rely on them to just make the connection. For every good specialist recruiter, there is a not so good one; the caveat to this being that sometimes even the bad ones will have good opportunities.

    It comes back to the original question I suppose- How much do you want the job?

  2. Matt’s completely right. Follow up is really important. You’ve got to show that you want the job, and that you’re motivated. Sitting back and hoping something good happens won’t cut it.

    Also, I would add that if you are applying by email, make sure to personalize the message. If you have someone’s name, use it. Write something in the body of the message, and make sure it’s something that demonstrates that you’ve actually read the job description. Generic “please accept my resume” messages are next to worthless. If you put that little effort into applying for the job, how much effort can I expect you to put in to doing the job?

    Another good post, Tom. You’re quite a capable voice for the recruiting industry.

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