online job applications http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/13407/all en-US Want to Get Hired? Be Memorable. http://www.wisebread.com/want-to-get-hired-be-memorable <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/want-to-get-hired-be-memorable" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/memorable_0.jpg" alt="People with facepaint" title="People with facepaint" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="155" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There is a lot of great, useful advice out there about how to get hired. Spending time on your resume, researching the company, dressing sharp...they're all important.&nbsp;But there's one piece of advice that I feel like has personally helped me the most in my hiring experiences that I don't see often enough in articles about getting a job &mdash; be memorable. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stupid-things-to-put-in-your-cover-letter">Stupid Things to Put in Your Cover Letter</a>)</p> <p>When I say be memorable, don't take this as an excuse to be ridiculous (&quot;Yes, this is a bright purple suit with a red shirt; thank you for noticing!&quot;), brash (&quot;You will hire me &mdash; I am more talented than the entire cast of <em>Glee</em>&quot;), or other kinds of stupid (&quot;Thanks for interviewing me; I brought you roses&quot;). Those examples might be a little over the top, but I think (or, at least, very strongly hope) that you get the gist.</p> <p>What I mean by memorable is providing information that sticks out in people's minds without overshadowing your qualifications or making you seem, uh, crazy. Let me give you an example from my own experience. When I was in high school, my summer job was working at a small amusement park. I performed in shows, ran rides, and did my share of cleaning bathrooms, but I also regularly performed as Cinderella (yes, I know I'm a brunette &mdash; trust me, the thing kids care about the most is a pretty dress). Before I garnered enough professional experience to bump it off my resume, I always included my work at the amusement park. And at the first few &quot;adult&quot; job interviews I ever had, every single person I spoke with brought up Cinderella &mdash; often in the context of &quot;when we saw that, we knew we had to bring you in.&quot;</p> <p>While the amusement park hasn't been park of my resume for several years, there are other ways I've made an effort to be memorable. On most resumes I've sent out &mdash; I'm a firm believer in editing your resume for each job you're applying for &mdash; I've included a &quot;special skills&quot; section. I typically use this section to highlight a mix of skills that could be useful for the job, such as &quot;conversational Italian,&quot; and skills that are interesting or unique, such as &quot;puppet construction and manipulation&quot; or &quot;cake decorating.&quot; Don't overload the section with a laundry list of hobbies, just pick a couple of interesting skills that could stick out in a hiring manager's mind.</p> <p>Another technique that I had a lot of success with when I was <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-freelance-clients-part-one">freelancing</a> full-time was playing with the subject line of emails. When I wrote ones like &quot;Writer Available for Web Copy Job,&quot; my hear-back rate was pretty low. But after I changed my line to &quot;Professional and Spunky Writer Available for Web Copy Job,&quot; responses shot up &mdash; and they'd often cite how unusual it was to see &quot;spunky&quot; as part of the response.</p> <p>Tricks like this aren't magic bullets, and they definitely aren't a replacement for hard work, preparation, and a good attitude. But they can be what separates you from the rest of the job hunters.</p> <p><em>What do you think? Do you have something you use to make yourself memorable when applying for jobs? If so, what?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/meg-favreau">Meg Favreau</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/want-to-get-hired-be-memorable">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-body-language-mistakes-that-sabotage-most-interviews">10 Body Language Mistakes That Sabotage Most Interviews</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/weird-job-interview-questions-and-how-to-answer-them">Weird Job Interview Questions (and How to Answer Them)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-ace-your-next-coffee-interview">How to Ace Your Next Coffee Interview</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-unique-ways-to-score-a-job-interview">12 Unique Ways to Score a Job Interview</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/job-search-tips-that-will-get-you-a-job-in-2012">Job Search Tips That Will Get You a Job in 2012</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Job Hunting job interviews online job applications resume writing Tue, 20 Sep 2011 10:24:16 +0000 Meg Favreau 712287 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Avoid Getting Hired http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-getting-hired <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-avoid-getting-hired" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/no.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Jobs aren't exactly pouring out of every corner of the market right now. Whether you need a full-time job, a part-time bill payer, new clients for your business, or a second job, the market is tight even for the most qualified candidates. This means that in order to be considered for a job now, more than ever, you have to stand out from the crowd as a stellar candidate.</p> <p>My company is in the process of hiring two new employees. I promote these jobs through my own social networks, and receive lots of inquiries and job applications in the process. I have to admit, even I have been astounded at just how little effort people are willing to make to get hired. I'm assuming that people actually want to earn money and have a career, so why be so half-assed about it?</p> <p>It's good to have a nice resume that is free from spelling errors, but there's so much more that you have to do right now to show how psyched you are about the job. Here are some examples of shoddy application tactics that I have come across in the past week alone. If you want to ensure that you don't get hired, please use these tactics.</p> <h3>Pass Up an &quot;In&quot;</h3> <p>My company recently decided to hire a new salesperson and a new customer support representative. I was in charge of writing up a job posting and helping to publicize it. I received a LinkedIn message from someone I have done business with, asking about the customer support position. He spoke passionately about his desire to help customers and his experience running a business. He seemed enthusiastic and ready to get started. Unfortunately, he lacked the technical skills required for the position.</p> <p>That said, I know he's a smart guy who can sell stuff, so I mentioned the sales job in lieu of the highly technical job, and asked if he was interested. Silence. Not having heard back 7 days later, I followed up over LinkedIn. After 2 more days of silence, I figured that the LinkedIn messaging system was wonky, and sent him an email asking if he had received my messages. A few minutes later, I got a reply.</p> <p>&quot;Thanks for your messages. I've been really busy with my job and stuff. I'll guess think about the sales job and maybe get back to you.&quot;</p> <p>Oh, yes, please go ahead and do so. No, really, take your time. In the meantime, my company is going to hire people to fill both roles. Had you responded with a resume outlining why you would be good for the job, there might have been a chance that, even if you weren't hired for the job, you'd be kept on file, <strong>with me as a reference from within the company</strong>. But now, there's no way I will ever recommend you for a job here, or anywhere.</p> <h3>Be Slow to Respond</h3> <p>Because the job market still sucks, when companies hire these days, they do so because they really need to fill a position quickly. Some companies (especially larger companies or governments with big HR bureaucracies to contend with) move slower than others, but all companies expect you to respond quickly to them. It's an unfair imbalance that you just have to face if you want to get hired.</p> <p>So, if you don't want to get hired, take at least 72 hours to respond to any email or phone call from a potential employer. That gives the employer a good idea about how likely you are to get projects done on time. I have experience with this mistake firsthand, as I lost a number of job opportunities by being too casual in replying to hiring managers.</p> <h3>Apply Online and Let It Go</h3> <p>The internet is fun and entertaining. It is also a black hole for job applications. If you apply for a job through an email address, you have at least a slight chance of slipping through to the final pile with a stellar resume and cover letter. But if you apply through a website for a large company, you're that much more of an anonymous entity. All your resume formatting might be stripped away, and you're just another poor schlub looking for work at JCPenney*.</p> <p>By all means, do this. Whatever you do, DO NOT attempt to make any personal contact at the company you want to work at. Do not go to the jewelry counter at Fred Meyer and chat up the manager about working there. Do not admire the way they do business or compliment them on how professional the staff is. Never send a hand-signed letter personally asking the manager to keep an eye out for your online application.</p> <p>Just keep plugging your name into the website application. Don't make yourself memorable.</p> <h3>Do Not Provide a Good Cover Letter</h3> <p>Cover letters prove that you read the job posting and are not just blindly sending job applications out. So you should definitely avoid crafting one that calls out the job requirements and how you meet or exceed them.</p> <h3>Show Your Inability to Do Research</h3> <p>It's actually not that unreasonable for an employer to expect hires to know what a company does, or sells. Now, it's not always your fault that you can't immediately determine what a company does, because some firms are notoriously bad at explaining their business on their web sites. For this reason, there's no shame in asking a company to send you more info &mdash; white papers, brochures, case studies, so that you can get a better grasp on what they do and how they do it.</p> <p>So don't do this. Should you get a job interview, show up utterly unaware of what your potential employer does. Also, it helps if you don't remember what the job title was or what your responsibilities might be.</p> <h3>Follow Up Incessantly</h3> <p>A few weeks ago, I was looking around my home, which resembles a tract house in Arizona that has been taken over by homeless squatters. Sighing, I searched for and located a few small businesses in my area that help with home organization. I emailed a few of them, and heard back within a few days for each. I then found myself struggling to find time to meet with them, between work, some vacation time that I had haphazardly planned, and a bit of recovery time after surgery.</p> <p>One business in particular seemed genuinely interested in earning my business, so interested that the owner emailed me every three days for nearly a month, asking if I was ready to meet.</p> <p>There's persistence, and then there's stalking. If you want to alienate a potential client or employer, by all means, badger them until they take out a restraining order. Do not stick to a single thank-you-for-your-time note. Go all out and show up at their house for Thanksgiving with the bits of their fingernail clippings that you've been collecting from their garbage bin. They'll be touched that you care so much.</p> <h3>Demand More than the Market Pays</h3> <p>The job market sucks right now. I don't want anyone to be paid less than they are worth, because people (<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-women-dont-negotiate">I'm looking at you, ladies</a>), really need to be careful about ensuring that they are asking for what the market should be paying.</p> <p>But there's also a reasonable limit to what you can expect to make, and that's probably about 10K more than the posted job pay scale, and only then if you are a super star. When a job is posted as paying 40K, the best way to make sure that you aren't hired is to send a compensation expectation estimate of around 90K.</p> <h3>Do Not Form a Respectable Online Presence</h3> <p>One of the first things that potential employers do upon receiving a qualified application is check out the applicant online. The last thing you want is have a presentable resume, some solid recommendations, and a good, sober-looking picture of yourself up on LinkedIn. If you have such an online presence, people might see it, and think that you are (1) sober and (2) worth hiring.</p> <p>Also, try to think of LinkedIn as something that only white collar professionals use. That will limit your ability to pitch yourself adequately in the retail industry.</p> <p>Make sure your Facebook profile is visible to everyone and prominently features the photo of you from the Pimps 'n Hos Valentine's Day party where you passed out in your cousin's driveway with a Brass Monkey in your hand.</p> <p>On a related note:</p> <h3>Do Not Google Yourself</h3> <p>There are a few other Andrea Dicksons out there in this world. Not a lot, but enough that I still get weekly emails about how my little Bobby is doing in his Toronto-based Little League team. Nevermind that I've never even been to Toronto, I'm sure my little Bobby (or was it Timmy?) is doing just fine. Little Sammy Slugger, that's what we call my kid, the one I've never met, <strong>because his mother is another Andrea Dickson</strong>. (Despite repeated emails to Kanata Little League to find out what Billy's mother's email address is, I still get the occasional payment request from Canada).</p> <p>Fortunately, as far as I know, there haven't been any Andrea Dicksons that have been arrested for anything particularly gruesome, so I've been pretty lucky (pity the other Andrea Dickson who tries to get a writing job somewhere only to find that people think she's a sub-par writer for a personal finance web site, amiright?). But not everyone is so lucky &mdash; my mother happens to share a name with someone who gets arrested for meth production every few months...in the same town. And she works on the civic guild, so they all get a laugh out of the arrest notices in the local paper.</p> <p>Anyway, the point is never to Google your name and make sure that there aren't other people out there giving YOU a bad name. If you, heaven forbid, actually Google your name and find out that there is another, let's say, Mike Hunt out there whose name is less than respectable, whatever you do, DO NOT <strong>point potential employers to your LinkedIn profile</strong>.</p> <p>What LinkedIn profile, right? You don't use that silly web site! MySpace forever, man!</p> <p><em>Have you seen people making egregious job application mistakes recently? Have you made any of these mistakes yourself? </em></p> <p>--------------------------------</p> <p>*This is not a knock of JCPenney &mdash; I adore JCPenney.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-karim">Andrea Karim</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-getting-hired">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-answer-23-of-the-most-common-interview-questions">How to Answer 23 of the Most Common Interview Questions</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-dream-jobs-youre-never-too-old-to-pursue">9 Dream Jobs You&#039;re Never Too Old to Pursue</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-words-to-never-use-in-a-job-interview">10 Words to Never Use in a Job Interview</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-signs-your-company-is-going-under">10 Signs Your Company Is Going Under</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-retail-gigs-that-pay-well-and-offer-benefits">11 Retail Gigs That Pay Well and Offer Benefits</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Job Hunting common job search mistakes how to NOT get hired job hunting mistakes online job applications resume problems stand out from the crowd Mon, 14 Mar 2011 12:36:06 +0000 Andrea Karim 503709 at http://www.wisebread.com