If you keep getting ghosted when you apply for jobs, there may be several reasons the hiring manager at the other end of your email correspondence isn’t getting back to you.
For starters, consider the sheer volume of people who might be applying for the same job. Depending on your industry, HR might be overwhelmed with candidates, the position might have been filled internally or, even, eliminated for cost-cutting reasons.
“In certain markets, like engineering, there’s a high demand for your talents right now,” says Dave Fano, CEO of Teal, an online job search platform based in Miami. “A few months ago, the same was true for nurses and, right now, hospitality workers are in demand. These market dynamics are ever-shifting.”
Second, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies have experienced a significant reset and may have made major changes within their hiring team.
“Talent acquisition teams have been reduced at a lot of organizations,” says Annie Glassman, talent director at Atrium, a woman-owned staffing and workforce solutions firm based in New York City. “What this means is that there may not be a specialist available to take on the burden of hiring.”
So what’s the best way to cut through the noise and make sure your candidacy gets acknowledged by a potential employer? Read on for six expert-driven tweaks you can make—now—to help ensure a callback:
1) Tap into your inner salesperson
When you’re looking for a job, you’re selling a product—and that product is you—so make it a goal to adhere to this mindset throughout the job search, even when you’re being ignored.
“It’s important to remember that an employer isn’t doing you a favor by employing you,” Fano says. “So, like a salesperson, you can’t let anything stop you—even when you get no reply. Every great salesperson knows that you have to keep going no matter what.”
2) Customize your cover letter
If you keep sending out the same generic cover letters over and over again, you may have tapped into the reason why you’re not getting any replies. Instead, make your case as high up in the letter as possible so no hiring manager can miss what you bring to the table.
“To do this, formulate a response to the issue at hand for each company you’re replying to,” Fano says. “Just because a company posts an opening for a product manager doesn’t mean that the challenges for the person who is hired for that position will be the same across the board.”
Ultimately, you want to present the one thing you think the company should do to solve a current issue. “Package that action plan in a well-written letter and you’ll hopefully get more traction,” Fano says.
4) Cast a wide net and be relentless
Job hunting is a numbers game and the more you apply, the better your chances of hearing from a potential hiring manager, Glassman says.“We like to talk about job searches as a top of a funnel,” she says. “The goal is to keep applying, keep getting your name out there, and filling the top of that funnel with the hope that a reply comes out the other side.”