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Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 12:31 am
by 16blue
I'm a fairly recent college grad. I'm not 100-percent a n00b at interviewing for jobs, but here's a dilemma (at the risk of sounding like a zombie).

When you apply for a job that you really want, and really think you're qualified for (yeah, yeah, I know that everybody thinks that), how do you go about getting your resume noticed/read and possibly getting an interview without being a totally annoying cuntwad? (Right now, I'm talking about an in-house staff position, but this also applies for freelance queries and the like.)

Is it OK to send an e-mail or make a phone call? Is there a time limit involved?

I know that in this economy, every job opening gets a million qualified applicants. I don't want my resume to get lost in some computer database out on the worldwide web, if possible. In this economy, it seems like every job opening (even shitty ones) gets 100,000 replies, so even if my resume is awesome ( 8-) ) it's no guarantee.

Thanks in advance, if anyone cares to help little Chunk here. I have freelance writing and editing clients (not content mills), but I am greedy and want more.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 12:48 am
by pinkelephant
I actively market myself each client. When I send a resume out it automatically goes with a letter written that proves I've done my research. This might not apply to your situation, but it might help. I write a lot of copy for businesses in my area. Before I send a resume or approach the client I've already looked at who they are. I know if they've had bad reviews, how often they update their blog, what's their business about and do they stand by their word. I've already looked at their keyword saturation and what their competitors are doing. I know if they are ranked, how much traffic they get.... in short I approach them as a stalker and play hardball. I'm creating a job for myself so what I do may not apply, but its effective. As a writer,I tell them its my business to know their business and if they've been slammed on Yelp or somewhere else I know about it.

I kind of look at it this way, I've done all that work BEFORE I'm hired.. the client has two options at that point, hire me, or risk me taking that information to their competitors. I hope this helps.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 1:30 am
by 16blue
Thanks, Pink. Good feedback. Much appreciated.

I'm definitely a big fan of doing my research. And I always send out a fully customized cover letter or cover e-mail detailing my work experience and showing that I know about the job when I send in my resume.

It was weird -- I went to one interview and they were surprised by something I said. They were impressed that I actually knew about their company. I guess there must be a lot of people who apply/query/even show up to an interview without any knowledge of what they're applying to.

But let's say I submit an online application to [City Newspaper] and attach my resume and cover letter. Or to [Random Freelance Client] and attach my resume/cover letter.

Do I wait until I hear something? Do I send a follow-up e-mail in the next couple of days to set myself apart from the pack of resumes the job inevitably gets?

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 2:02 am
by EnigmaticJack
Depends on what you're applying for. If it's something where they have a specific date that they're taking applications until or that you can expect a bit of a wait from, hold off on the follow-up for now. If it's something that's actively taking applications/submissions because they want to fill a position, go for the follow-up after a 'reasonable' amount of time has passed. That time period varies depending on the job, etc., and it can be kind of tricky. You don't want to come across as a n00b who can't wait for them to review your shit, but you also don't want them to give the job to the other guy who did follow up.

Basically yes you should follow up if you think you should have heard something by now, so long as you didn't submit your shit yesterday and plan on calling tomorrow.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 2:54 am
by BurnCEs
On a related note, one way to pimp yourself a bit and make your name stick out when the recruiter is scanning through hundreds of resumes to shortlist for interview is to find out who is the recruiting manager/line manager for the position, and put in a "I'm really interested in this job, but before I apply I just wondered if you could give me a bit more info about the role ..." type call.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 4:33 am
by pinkelephant
Burn and Jack are right on the money. Also with random clients over the internet you could say something like.. "I'm wrapping up a project in the next few days and I wanted to touch base.." <---- working off the It's easier to find a job when you have a job premise.

Sometimes when an online client is vague about what they want I'll ask a question and follow it with an answer of what I'd do. Sometimes they don't care, but they like to see that you're critically thinking. (Warning: I have had this method SLOW the project down, cause I inadvertently lead them in a new direction.)

Also, between times make-up stuff to do, write a clip over something you like, play a bit in PSP or PS maybe design logos or anything your passionate about really. You can never go wrong with increasing your skill set because you'll eventually run into that client that wants you to have experience in 30 areas and be clairvoyant.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 7:40 am
by partygirl
This is a really small thing but in my mind it helps. Years ago I was helping a boss sort through resumes for a position we had. The hard copies that had been folded and mailed in letter envelopes were annoying to deal with and kept trying to close up. For that reason I always send my resume in a large flat envelope so I don't have to fold it, so it lies flat and open on a desk, and my name is more visible than on the folded resumes.

Even today with email, I always snail-mail a nice, clean, unfolded resume and wiring samples in a flat envelope. It's a good excuse to contact them again and follow up, plus I know my resume isn't hiding in an email inbox.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 1:36 pm
by 16blue
Great advice, guys. Thanks, will keep it in mind/follow it/etc.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 10:51 pm
by scribble
Think Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. Talk to everyone you know, use Facebook, linkedIn, etc. to find a name of someone you know in the company. Have them hand-in your resume to the person or department that is hiring.

When someone where I worked handed me a resume and asked me to look at it, if the person was in the ballpark, I'd go to HR and demand that they set up an interview. There are a lot of flakes out there - look at the Demand forums - and if someone personally vouches for the person, I'd give them a look. Even if they only know them through sports, neighbors, etc, interviewing someone that a "real" person says is a good person that plays well with others is a major selling point. Two of my best developers were people that I would never have agreed to interview if I did not have a personal recommendation.

Re: Following Up -- Questions

PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 6:05 pm
by 16blue
Thanks to everyone... had a phone interview this morning, and got an e-mail for an in-person interview on Monday.